Clutha River Trail
You may already know that the Clutha Mata-Au River Parkway Group is developing a river-length trail ~ the Clutha River Trail. We are working with a number of community groups along the Clutha River to develop this trail. These groups are linked together through their membership in the Parkway Group.
Albert Town to Luggate ...
The first new section of the Clutha River Trail from Albert Town to Luggate is well in hand. This work is a co-operative effort between the Upper Clutha Tracks Trust, DoC, the QLDC, the Clutha Fisheries Trust, and the Clutha River Parkway Group. Walkers, mountain-bikers and fishermen can already use part of this trail section. Access is from the end of Stevenson's Rd. near the Wanaka Airport, and the trail begins at the Poplars, following the true right riverbank downriver to a pleasant public picnic area at Fantail Creek, rising onto the terrace where a fenced accessway on the right leads to Shortcut Rd., Luggate.
Luggate to the Maori Gorge ...
The Clutha Mata-Au River Parkway Group is currently focusing on the second contiguous section of the Clutha River Trail from Luggate to Lake Dunstan, with construction initially to the Maori Gorge at Queensberry.
The importance of this next section becomes very apparent when considered in the context of the growing trail network. The Te Araroa NZ Walkway follows the Hawea River on its journey south toward the Motatapu, meeting the Clutha River Trail at Albert Town. The trail downriver along the Clutha River will link the Te Araroa NZ Walkway with Central Otago. The Clutha River Trail will eventually provide ongoing links to the Central Otago Rail Trail, and to the Roxburgh Lawrence Trail. Therefore, the trail along the Clutha River will become a vital arterial route in an impressive network.
Funding applications are currently being processed, and it is hoped that trail construction from Luggate to the Maori Gorge will commence in 2008. DoC will oversee work to ensure that their required standards are met.
It is pleasing to note that tourists from the U.S.A., the U.K. and Australia, have made individual donations to assist our work. They have been so impressed by the Clutha Mata-Au River and the scope of our conservation project, that they have felt compelled to contribute before leaving the area. Such donations are most welcome, as it is especially difficult for us to fund our administration costs. To date, there have been no individual donations from New Zealanders. If you would like to contribute, please contact us here.
Community Participation ...
The Clutha River Trail will become Otago’s longest single trail, providing significant economic and recreational benefits to the river communities and the region. It will also facilitate practical community involvement in river corridor improvement and management, through native restoration projects (including schools), gold-rush heritage site restoration and tourism development.
We are looking for more community groups to participate in this exciting project, especially in the Tarras, Beaumont, Tuapeka Mouth and Balclutha areas. If you are interested in getting together with a few people in your area to improve your section of the Clutha Mata-Au River, please contact us.
Clutha River Trail