Whakarewarewa Forest Access & Closures

Whakarewarewa Forest is a commercial forest and therefore all persons wishing to access this forest must comply with the
Whakarewarewa General Forest Access Rules and Safety Behaviour Regulations. All access by vehicle requires a permit. Refer to RECREATIONAL ACCESS PERMITS or BUSINESS/CONTRACTOR ACCESS PERMITS for more information. People who do not follow these rules and requirements could be trespassed.

'Safety Message' for all Recreational Users

  • Please refer to Safety & Risk section for latest 'Safety Warnings'.
  • When entering a commercial forest  please adhere to all road and track closure signs, tapes and instructions and give way to all trucks and machinery at all times.
  • Beware of LOGGING TRUCKS OPERATING - Please give way to, and move to the side of the road for, all heavy vehicles, especially on hills, for your own safety and the safety of trucks and drivers.
  • MTB Tracks in recently logged areas may be passable but please check with the Redwoods Visitor Information Centre or Ride Rotorua Mountain Bike Club for clarification.

Whakrewarewa Forest Information & Safety Maps

Map to ACCESS & EMERGENCY MEETING POINTS - Map still to come


Whakarewarewa Commercial Forest Operations & Closures

  • Harvest Operations - Hill Road (Updated 5/10/18) - See  map for details.
    TIMBERLANDS Limited will commence harvesting operations on Monday 8 October, on the north eastern side of Hill Road.
    • Harvesting contractors will be operating from 4am to 3:30 pm Monday to Friday.
    • During weekdays logging trucks will enter and exit the forest via the Black House carpark on Tarawera Road.
      During the night (10pm to 9am) Sunday to Thursday logging trucks will enter via the Black House carpark and travel along Windy, Pipeline, Red Tank and Nursery Roads and exit via the Red Stag mill entrance on 8 Mile Gate Road.
    • TIMBERLANDS Limited requests that forest users obey all restrictions and respect the security officers, they are there for your safety.
    • The operations are expected to be completed by late November 2018.
    • Roads Affected:
      - Hill, Windy, Pipeline, Red Tank & Nursery, 8 Mile Gate Roads
    • Trails Affected:
      - Eagle vs Shark, Te Rua MTB tracks will be PERMANENTLY CLOSED for the duration of the harvesting and logging operation.
      - Frontal Lobotomy, Lentil Link Tukonohi & Te Pou Koropu MTB Tracks will likely be CLOSED between 4am and 3:30 pm weekdays.  These trails will reopen (unless deemed unsafe) by security after 3:30 pm on week days and weekends.
    • Walking Tracks Affected:
      - Black walking track will have a diversion in place for the duration of the harvesting and logging operation.
  • Harvest Operations - Tikitapu/Green Lake Road (Updated 5/10/18) - See map for details.
    TIMBERLANDS Limited is due to commence harvesting operations on Monday 15 October, in an area around the Green Lake, Tikitapu, Pondy & String Roads adjacent to 8 Mile Gate Road.
    • Harvesting & Logging operations will be active between 4am and 3.30pm Monday to Friday.   
    • TIMBERLANDS Limited request that forest users obey all restrictions and respect the security officers, they are there for your safety.
      Both operations are expected to be completed by late November 2018.
    • Roads Affected:
      - There will be periodic road closures on Green Lake, Pondy, Tikitapu & String Roads. Please pay attention to diversions/alternative route maps that are posted in the forest.
    • Trails Affected:
      - Taura MTB track will be PERMANENTLY CLOSED for the duration of the harvesting and logging operation.
      - No Brains MTB track will likely be CLOSED between 4am and 3:30 pm weekdays. Closures of this track will be kept to a minimum.   
    • Walking Tracks Affected:
      -
      There will be a diversion in place for the Black walking track.
    • All trails & roads will be re-opened (unless deemed unsafe) by security after 3:30pm on weekdays and be open on weekends (excluding Taura MTB track).

Whakarewarewa Recreational Forest Access & Closures

  • NO HUNTING is permitted at any time.
  • Recreational access by foot, horse or bike does not require an access permit. For further road and track information refer to The Redwoods Visitor Centre or Ride Rotorua.
    WARNING: At times there will be commercial forest activities carried out within the forest and for your safety, access into these areas will be prohibited. This will be indicated by signage and hazard tape. Please ensure all signage and instructions are adhered to. On rare occasions, all access to Whakarewarewa Forest may be closed for safety and asset protection reasons. Please respect the forest closure decision an stay out until the forest is reopened. Please refer to the "Timberlands Notice Board" on this page for up to date information on commercial forest activities.
  • For any other activity or access by motorised vehicle an access permit and key is required. Refer to Business/Contractor Access Permits.
  • Refer to The Redwoods for all recreational track management and events.

Unauthorised Activities

  • It has been brought to the attention of TIMBERLANDS Limited (TL) that several unauthorised mountain bike tracks have recently been constructed in Whakarewarewa Forest. The construction of tracks or any other land or vegetation-disturbing activity within Whakarewarewa Forest requires the approval of both the forest manager (TL) and land owner (Central North Island Iwi Holdings Limited).  Presently this can only be obtained through a formal application submitted by the Rotorua Trails Trust. Anyone found undertaking these activities without authority will be trespassed and may face prosecution for willful damage.  Continued unauthorised track construction may jeopardise future track authorisations and ultimately the future of mountain biking in the forest. Please refrain from this activity.

General Information

  • Timberlands Limited is working to minimise the inconvenience for public use of the Whakarewarewa Forest during harvest operations and wishes to thank the public for their patience and cooperation.
  • All harvested areas will be replanted, if possible, in the next planting season.

Whakarewarea Forest Management Plan

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