A new section of off-road trail, from Wakefield to Kohatu, is due to be fully completed for summer 2018/2019. This section of the Great Taste Trail Rail Route passes through the Spooners Tunnel.
Yellow section: Wakefield to Belgrove: 9.5 km
Orange section: Belgrove to Norris Gully carpark: 8 km
Red section: Norris Gully carpark to Kohatu: 7 km
The route from Wakefield to Belgrove is easy riding and virtually flat. From Belgrove to the tunnel entrance, expect a slow steady climb. The dis-used rail tunnel is 1.4 km long and is TOTALLY DARK so lights are essential. The Norris Gully carpark is located next to the state highway at the southern end of the tunnel. From here is is an easy ride through to Kohatu where the off-road trail ends.
The easiest way to add the Spooners Tunnel to one of our itineraries, is to choose one which includes a night in Wakefield.
The Nelson Tasman Cycle Trail Trust is responsible for the construction of the Great Taste Trail. This group of mostly voluntary members have done an amazing job to date, selecting the route, working with land-owners and council, designing the trail details and managing construction. The next planned section will be an extension of the Rail Route beyond Wakefield. At present, there is a completed section of trail beyond Wakefield (the Spooners Tunnel section) but it is not connected to the main trail at Wakefield. This means that to reach it, you need to cycle on the State Highway for 4.5km.
Sometimes it is the ordinary people doing extraordinary things that create the strongest memories while travelling and this is certainly true on the Great Taste Trail. People with passion, doing unlikely or refreshingly simple things, can lift our spirits in ways that we may not expect.
The tiny village of Upper Moutere and it’s environs are a detour off the Great Taste Trail and this area provides a fabulous day ride from Mapua. The cycling is on quiet roads in a rolling landscape of lush farmland, hop gardens and vineyards with stunning views to the ranges and the sea. Cycling here is great any time, and even better on Labour Weekend Sunday, as this is the Moutere Artisans Weekend.
A new section of off-road Great Taste Trail opened on 17 April 2016, and the feature of this section is a dis-used rail tunnel. Cycling from Nelson, riders can take the Great Taste Trail Rail Route to Wakefield. The next leg is on the state highway for a distance of 4.5 km to the Wai-iti Domain. From here to the tunnel entrance the route is on trail. The trail continues through the tunnel, ending at the Norris Gully Recreation Area.
We are based in a convenient location for wine & food cycling on the Great Taste Trail. The densest area of wineries, breweries and cafes on the trail is in the area between Stoke (where we are) and Wakefield on the Rail Route.
Tourism NZ recently produced a new video of the Great Taste Trail and we had the pleasure of helping out with bikes and support. Here are some pics we took during the shoot. To view the gorgeous video, just go to our home page.
Introducing – the film crew.
Hiking, biking or kayaking in the Nelson Tasman region feature in a new article in Australian magazine The Senior Traveller. The cover image is all a-glow with the autumn colour of Mahana apple trees, illustrating one of the delights of the Great Taste Trail. Foody places feature of course – there are in fact five craft breweries and plenty of wineries easily accessible to cyclists riding the trail.
Read an on-line article by the same author here http://www.lifestyle.com.au/travel/eat-play-stay-best-of-nelson-new-zealand.aspx
Browse the images below to see some candid shots taken by our staff at Gentle Cycling.
The Great Taste Trail Coastal Route is an off-road cycle trail running from Nelson city, to Kaiteriteri, gateway to the Abel Tasman National Park. Below are some photos taken along this section of the trail.