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Popular Tararua park sites reopen

Jumbo Hut is back up and in business for the holiday season. PHOTO/FILE.


Trampers and campers have more options for the holidays with two popular sites reopening in the Tararua Forest Park.

Department of Conservation (DOC) staff reopened the popular Jumbo Hut, west of Masterton, after completing strengthening work.

The picturesque Waiohine Gorge Campsite, west of Carterton, is open for campers now the road has been reinstated after a slip earlier this year.

“Jumbo Hut is the second most visited hut in the park, and Waiohine Gorge is a spectacular camping site that attracts a lot of people over summer,” acting DOC Wairarapa Operations Manager Jim Flack said.

“People love visiting these places and it was a priority to get them open again in time for the holiday season.”

Jumbo Hut was closed in July after engineers judged the hut might be unsafe in extreme high winds and heavy snow fall.

The hut was braced inside and out to the latest building standard for extreme alpine weather.

“We closed the hut as a safety precaution until the strengthening work was complete. People’s safety is our highest priority,” Mr Flack said.

The 36-year-old Jumbo hut is above the bush-line at an altitude of 1230m and clearly visible from Masterton.

More than 2000 people visit it each year.

Mr Flack said campers and trampers could drive all the way to the Waiohine Gorge Campsite now the road was open again.

“It’s a secluded spot with great views up into the ranges and fantastic swimming holes – a great place for people to connect with nature.”



  1. Nice to see Jumbo open for Trampers.
    However, article gives the false impression Jumbo is easily accessed through Waiohine Gorge road (which it is, if you PLAN a longer route through Totara Flats and over the hump to meet up with the Powell Hut track)
    Easiest access to Jumbo for those on shorter tramp, is from Mount Holdsworth roadend.
    Anyone unfamiliar with the Tararuas and those who just decide to go for a wander, and not with enough gear, could get into trouble reading this.

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