Hakatere Seagull Loop

Seagull Lake Loop. For a true multi day ride the Seagull and Emily Lake Loop is a solid and rewarding challenge.

This information is taken straight from the Chill Adventures Magazine  – new out this summer. It contains biking information on lots of tracks around the South Island.

It is a must have for any mountain biking people. For your free copy please call into the Methven i-SITE – 160 Main Street, Methven, or grab one from all good bike shops around New Zealand.

Seagull Loop Track  

Starting from the base Lake Heron Camp Ground, and following the other side of the lake there is a track through to Harrisons Bight. It’s very easy riding, approx 5kms, and passes over a shared walking foot bridge.

Harrisons Bight has multiple rivers/streams flowing into the lake. It’s almost directly opposite Arrowsmith Station and sits under Sugarloaf Peak, a 1238m high peak made of solid rock. Lake access is available via a short walk.

From Harrisons Bight, follow existing DOC tracks up the Swin riverbed through to Double and Seagull Lake. There are markers but generally the track has been disused.

The intention of DOC is to allow non motorised access with little management. Some of the track is not ideal riding, however overall the tracks are reasonable, commanding great views back to the Arrowsmiths.

Crossing over the Swin riverbed, the dual purpose track is marked heading east towards Longman Range. Care must be taken with Matagouri over the track. Farm tracks start just before Double Hut (6 bunks).

There is a steady climb across the Swin River south branch and a small scrabble (approx 1km) until you find the farm track again. The track leads onto Seagull Lake and Manuka Lake. Manuka Hut has 6 bunks and is on the left off the trail.

After Manuka Lake, the track follows Stour River branch, eventually connecting with another farm track with two choices (left or right).

To loop back, head right, past Lake Emily and Castle Ridge Station and onto Hakatere Heron Road. The road back is approx 7.5kms.

The second option is to continue down Stour River following an existing track to Ashburton Gorge Rd.

This track can also be picked up from Castle Ridge Station as a separate ride or alternative to riding from Harrisons Bight through to Seagull Lake, its duration is approx 2hrs.

Starting from the base Lake Heron Camp Ground, and following the other side of the lake there is a track through to Harrisons Bight. It’s very easy riding, approx 5kms, and passes over a shared walking foot bridge.

Harrisons Bight has multiple rivers/streams flowing into the lake. It’s almost directly opposite Arrowsmith Station and sits under Sugarloaf Peak, a 1238m high peak made of solid rock. Lake access is available via a short walk.

From Harrisons Bight, follow existing DOC tracks up the Swin riverbed through to Double and Seagull Lake. There are markers but generally the track has been disused. The intention of DOC is to allow non motorised access with little management.

Some of the track is not ideal riding, however overall the tracks are reasonable, commanding great views back to the Arrowsmiths.

Crossing over the Swin riverbed, the dual purpose track is marked heading east towards Longman Range. Care must be taken with Matagouri over the track. Farm tracks start just before Double Hut (6 bunks).

There is a steady climb across the Swin River south branch and a small scrabble (approx 1km) until you find the farm track again. The track leads onto Seagull Lake and Manuka Lake. Manuka Hut has 6 bunks and is on the left off the trail.

After Manuka Lake, the track follows Stour River branch, eventually connecting with another farm track with two choices (left or right). To loop back, head right, past Lake Emily and Castle Ridge Station and onto Hakatere Heron Road. The road back is approx 7.5kms.

The second option is to continue down Stour River following an existing track to Ashburton Gorge Rd. This track can also be picked up from Castle Ridge Station as a separate ride or alternative to riding from Harrisons Bight through to Seagull Lake, its duration is approx 2hrs.

Description

Loop Track
Distance: approx 35km
Timing: 4-5 hours
Lowest Point: 700m ASL
Highest Point: 820m ASL
Type of Track
55% 4WD Farm Track
20% Single Track
15% Metalled Track
15% Metalled Road
10% River Bed

Setting
Alpine and Farmland

Suitable for adventurous riders with a high level of fitness and good backcountry navigation skills. Carry your own water supplies.
70-80% Rideable
20% Push/Carry.

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