Maungatautari Reserve Hicks Road track reopens

maungatautari-reserve-hicks-road-track-reopens

An accessway to a treasured spot in the heart of Waikato is being reopened today, after being closed for more than three years.

The Hicks Road access for visitors to Maungatautari in the Waipā District has reopened on the first day of 2022.

The Hicks Road access for visitors to Maungatautari in the Waipā District has reopened on the first day of 2022. Photo: Supplied by Waipā District Council / Mark Hamilton

Waipā District Council has opened the newly fenced Hicks Road track to Maungatautari Reserve, once again giving the taonga two access routes.

The road was closed in 2018 after issues between the council and private landowners.

Waipā District Mayor Jim Mylchreest said the track would allow more to people to enjoy the ancient ngahere.

“Maungatautari is home to so many native flora and fauna and is a very special place to visit so I would encourage those who can to do so.”

The kaka has returned to Maungatautari.

Kākā bird at Maungatautari. Photo: RNZ / Andrew McRae

Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari Reserve is the largest pest-free forest on mainland Aotearoa, covering 3400 hectares.

A spokesperson for Ani Waata Whānau Trust, which also helped with the process, said they were pleased to restore access for their whānau and wider community.

“We have maintained our commitment to supporting Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari and their work to eradicate pests on our tūpuna maunga throughout the process,” they said.

The council is also well underway with planning for new public toilets for the track, which will be built in the first half of 2022.

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