Boars Head Mine
Time: 1 hr 30 min return
Boars Head Mine is as close as Taranaki gets to having its own gold mine. For more than 100 years hopeful prospectors dug shafts into the Kaitake Ranges dreaming of striking it rich.
From the end of Weld Road the track follows marker poles across farmland, climbing uphill to the bush line. A well marked track leads 20 min into the bush where the first mine shaft can be found. Follow the steep track down to the river to view two more shafts. While the 30 m long mine shaft at the top of the hill is safe to enter (a torch is recommended) the ones at river level are dangerous and should not be entered. Return the same way.
Getting there: The track begins at the end of Weld Road, off SH45 south of Oakura.
Time: 2 hr
This short but challenging track can be linked with the Waimoku Track to make a loop that returns to Lucy’s Gully. The Sefton Track begins by the carpark where it crosses an unbridged stream then winds steeply uphill for 2 km before meeting with the Waimoku Track junction. Turn left and head downhill to return to the car park. The stream crossing can become impassable after heavy rain.
Getting there: The Sefton Track begins in Lucy’s Gully. From New Plymouth, follow Devon Street West south, continuing on coastal SH45, 5 km past Oakura. Turn off at the signposted access road.
Time: 4 – 5 hr return
This track leads up through forest to the Patuha Trig (682 m) offering great views along the coast and up to Mt Taranaki. The last 100m section of track to the trig is a scramble up an exposed rocky section which some people may find a challenge. An easier alternative route up to the trig is via the Davies Track.
From the trig take the Waimoku track back down to the car park, or turn left onto the Sefton Track which will return you to Lucy’s Gully just below the Waimoku Track entrance.
Getting there: The Waimoku Track begins in Lucy’s Gully. From New Plymouth, follow Devon Street West south, continuing on coastal State Highway 45, 5 km past Oakura. Turn off at the signposted access road.
Time: 4 – 5 hr return
Leaving the Surrey Hill Road end the route climbs through farmland, following marker poles to the edge of Egmont National Park. From here it climbs steadily through bush to Patuha Trig, offering great views of the coastline and up to Mt Taranaki.
This walk can be combined with the Waimoku Track (total 4 hr trip) to descend into Lucy’s Gully. You will need to organise transport to pick you up.
When crossing farmland please respect private property, leave gates as you find them and stay on the route.
Getting there: The track is accessed from Surrey Hill Road, off Wairau Road, Oakura.