Author(s): Alison Dench & Lee-Anne Parore
The rugged Waitakere Ranges Regional Park sprawls from the western Auckland suburbs to the wild coast around Piha and Whatipu, and its network of bush and coastal trails attracts tens of thousands of visitors each year. With the growing popularity of the Hillary Trail, this number is set to rise.
First published in 2001 and with over 12,000 copies sold, Walking the Waitakere Ranges is now in its fourth edition - it remains the leading guide to the best walks in the region. Information on the popular Hillary Trail multiday walk has been updated and expanded, and new graphics identify walks that are part of the Hillary Trail. The authors have also added a new loop walk that uses the freshly constructed Beveridge Track near the Arataki Visitor Centre, gateway to the park. Essential detail regarding boardwalks, bridges, surface upgrades and viewing platforms is updated, including the information on kauri dieback.
Walking the Waitakere Ranges remains as practical and indispensable as ever. The introduction covers geology, forest, native birds and pre-European history, as well as the history of the park. Safety and security issues are also covered. The balance of the book comprises details of 45 walks, each with a map. All walks are graded, with an approximate completion time. Ranging in length from a 20-minute family ramble to longer, more challenging day hikes, the walks have great appeal to families, tourists, backpackers and experienced walkers.
Alison Dench is a highly skilled researcher, writer, editor, book designer and outdoor enthusiast who lives in Arrowtown. She has written more than 15 books.
Lee-Anne Parore is a freelance outdoor instructor and an experienced tramper. She lives in the Waitakere Ranges.