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Walking, running and tramping

Walking, running and tramping

Updated 12 February 2021 4:21pm


A backdrop to Eastbourne and Wainuiomata, East Harbour’s sheltered valleys and sweeping bays offer beautiful bush and exhilarating views over Wellington Harbour and headlands.

Caring for your park

  • Dogs are welcome in the northern block. Keep them under control and remove droppings. Dogs must be on a leash on the Pencarrow Coast Road to protect wildlife habitat. Do not take them south of the steep foot track to the historic lighthouse. No dogs are permitted at Baring Head/Ōrua-pouanui as livestock graze the area.
  • Pack in and pack out. Take your rubbish home and recycle it where possible
  • Do not remove, disturb or damage native plants and animals
  • Light no fires. Portable stoves are permitted
  • Mountain biking is permitted on designated tracks in the northern forest (Main Ridge from Wainuiomata to Rata Ridge), in the Parangarahu (Pencarrow) Lakes Area and at Baring Head/Ōrua-pouanui.


The park has moderately steep hills and is exposed in places. There is no shelter in the Parangarahu Lakes Area or Baring Head/Ōrua-pouanui. As weather can be changeable please:

  • Carry warm and waterproof clothing
  • Carry enough food and drink for your trip
  • Plan your route and leave your intentions with someone
  • Wear strong lace-up footwear

The Hawtry Route on the Main Ridge between the McKenzie Track and the top of the Kereru Track is an unformed track and marked with orange discs. It takes approximately 1 hour to walk this section. In the interests of safety, inexperienced people should allow plenty of time to finish their walk in daylight. Note that it takes at least 30 minutes to walk down from the Main Ridge to Days Bay or Eastbourne.

Some sections of the tracks are moderately steep and slippery when wet.  Avoid streams in heavy rain. See NZMS sheet BQ32 for further detail of the terrain.

The geography of the park gives rise to several clusters of tracks, with a wide range of grades for different levels of ability. Most are readily accessible via public transport.