Mr and Mrs Walking with Kids
Ōrongorongo Track to a Private Hut (Overnight Tramp) - Remutaka Forest Park
Updated: Mar 6, 2022
Saturday, 24 February 2018
Location: 1039 Coast Road, Wainuiōmata, Lower Hutt. Follow the Coast Road for 10km until you reach Remutaka Forest Park (there is a big sign on your left), continue down the Catchpool Valley Road until you reach the car park and information area at the end. You will lose cellphone reception before you reach Catchpool valley.
This was our first overnight tramp to a hut! We were a bit nervous that the kids (especially Miss 4) would need to be carried so we brought 2x packs between 3 adults. In hindsight we could have brought 3x packs and lots of extra yummy snackage because neither kids needed any carrying.
When there were whispers of weariness we started telling stories and played the run run jump game with Miss 4 (two adults holding her hand and she runs...1,2,3, ...20,21 and then jumps). There was also lots of chat's about how incredible they both were which kept them moving.
The hut was a huge hit, sleeping in bunks surrounded by adults with a raging fire was super exciting. Master 6 even learnt how to play snap.
The walk back went really quickly, I think we just stopped once for lunch :)
We've also written a few posts (under tips and tricks) on tramping with the kids, what we pack, safety info etc if you're interested.
Age of our Kids: Miss 4yr Master 6yr
Buggy Friendly: Not
Walking Time: Around 2 hours to the river (one way),
Length: 5.2 km to the Orongorongo River, the hut we stayed at was across the river. We walked a little way up alongside the river and then crossed it and climbed up a bit of a ridge. The fit-bit generously thought we'd walked 12km
Difficulty: Easy - Moderate (a few climbs)
Amenities: There is a toilet in the Catchpool Valley carpark and one at the Turere Bridge Picnic area (once you get to the river). There are also a few seats along the walk.
Dogs: Yes, but on a lead only. There is a large kiwi sanctuary so definitely no off lead dogs. Things to be aware of: If you book a hut for the night be aware that most are on the other side of the river. The river can swell quickly after rain, but even when its low it still can move fast - so watch the kids.