Heaphy Track should open to mountain bikers
17 June 2009 Media release
Heaphy Track should open to mountain bikers next year
The Heaphy Track is a cycleway waiting to happen and should be open to mountain bikers next year, says Labour List MP Damien O Connor.
“Indications are that after a long period of consideration and process the Kahurangi National Park Plan changes should be out for public scrutiny within the next week or two.
“I have always believed that the track needs to be available for mountain bike use as the number of trampers alone does not do justice to the spectacular scenery and experiences the area has to offer,” Mr O’Connor said.
“Opening the track up for mountain biking will overnight double the number of people who get to experience the track and will continue to build as the interest in mountain biking grows.
“This initiative for the cycleway progressed when the late Rod Donald and myself approached the Conservation Authority to seek a change of policy to allow mountain bikes in National Parks.
“The great track, wonderful hut facilities and spectacular scenery will combine to make the Heaphy Track one of the great rides in New Zealand,” said Mr O’Connor.
“Both Golden Bay and Karamea will benefit from the flow of visitors when the track is officially opened, through the same type of employment and business opportunities which have been created by the Otago Rail Trail.
“While a full public consultation process will occur when the proposed changes are made public, I feel confident the wisdom of the changes will be supported by locals and the growing number of mountain bikers across New Zealand,” Mr O’Connor said.