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Hiker walking on a trail in the Waitakere Ranges

Why is there a rāhui over the Waitākere Ranges and what does it mean for you?

The Waitākere Ranges is an incredibly special place, but also very fragile. High visitor numbers, pest animals, weeds and other factors create a lot of pressure on our taonga (treasured things, such as kauri) and can degrade the forest’s mauri (life force) if not managed appropriately.

Why is there a rāhui in place?

Currently, the mauri (life force) of the forest isn’t well, primarily because of kauri dieback, pest animals, weeds and unmanaged access to the area.

To protect the forest, Te Kawerau ā Maki placed a rāhui (customary practice of protection) over the Waitākere Ranges in December 2017. The rāhui is in place to help heal the forest and give scientists time to develop a solution to kauri dieback disease. We need to limit public access to the Waitākere Ranges until research, planning and remedial work are complete to ensure the risk of people spreading kauri dieback is controlled.

What does the rāhui mean for me?

To see which walking tracks are currently open in the Waitākere Ranges, head to the Auckland Council’s up-to-date list of walks or open the Tiaki Tāmaki Makaurau map and tick the ‘Tracks/Trails/Cycleway’ box.

How can I check which walks are open?

The Waitākere Ranges is currently closed, except for a few designated areas.

While the forest is closed, one of the projects we are working on involves upgrading walking tracks to a very high quality around the edges of the forest. These new walking tracks will allow the community to have better access to the Waitākere Ranges, while still protecting the forest for future generations. We can all do our part.

Your role in protecting the ranges

Living in the Waitākere Ranges is a special privilege, which also comes with some responsibility. We need your help to protect and sustain the forest, rivers and coastline of this precious place.

By working together and respecting the rāhui, we can ensure the Waitākere Ranges can be enjoyed by many generations to come.