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Top Valley is a popular recreational area, with short walks, swimming holes and picnic and camping areas.

Track overview

4 - 5 km return via same track

Walking and tramping

1 hr 30 min - 2 hr 30 min Easy: Walking track

Dog access

Dogs with a DOC permit only. Contact the relevant DOC office to obtain a permit.

About this track


The Riverside Walk (Top Valley)

Time: 2 hr 30 min return
Distance: 5 km

This walk follows an old gold miners’ track. You will see old gold tailings and the historic battery site of the Wellington mine.

Forks Walk (Top Valley)

Time: 1 hr 30 min return
Distance: 4 km 

This track leads to Whiteheads Clearing, where there are stacked river stones from the mining era. From here, a marked route climbs to Old Man Hut (4 hours).

Old Man Hut.

Old Man Hut

Category: Standard
Facilities: 5 bunk beds, heating, mattresses
Bookings not required - first come, first served

Getting there

The northbank of Wairau River provides access to Mt Richmond Forest Park.

To get to this part of the forest park, turn off State Highway 6, just north of the Wairau River Bridge, 16 km from Blenheim.

There is no scheduled public transport available.

Know before you go

  • Only light fires in hut fireplaces.
  • Rivers can rise quickly; do not cross when they are swollen.
  • Boil, filter, or treat water for drinking.
  • Always use the intentions books.
  • The access road from the Northbank Road may be closed due to fire danger or forestry operations. Check if the access roads to Mt Richmond Forest Park are open.


Wairau / Renwick Office
Phone:      +64 3 572 9100
Full office details
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