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Take care on conservation tracks in Wellington

10 July, 2006

Take care on conservation tracks in Wellington

People venturing into forest parks and reserves in the Wellington region are warned to be wary of possible flood damage to tracks and structures and allow themselves plenty of time.

Flooding last week washed out the road at Catchpool, the popular entrance to the Rimutaka Forest Park and the Makara Walkway has been closed indefinitely after being damaged by heavy rain. But the Department of Conservation says other tracks are also likely to be affected by slips and windfalls after the prolonged heavy deluge, which caused severe flooding in the southern Wairarapa.

DOC recreation technical support officer Claudia Hill says people planning trips into the Tararua, Rimutaka and Aorangi Forest Parks need to be extra vigilant.

“They should allow themselves plenty of time as they may need to detour around obstacles on tracks. And they should be careful to get back on the track again.”

“People also need to be aware that streams could quickly become impassable after just a shower because of the high river levels at present.”

DOC is urging people to report any storm damage they see by contacting DOC HOTline 0800 362 468 with a description of the size and nature of the problem, including a grid reference if they have the equipment. Alternately they can ring Kapiti Area Office on 04 296 1112, Wairarapa Area Office on 06 377 0700 or Poneke Area Office on 04 472 5821.

“We have staff out assessing tracks, but it could take some time to inspect more than 760 km of track on conservation land,” says Ms Hill.

“So we appreciate hearing from people who encounter damaged facilities.”


ENDS

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