Ara Hīkoi Aotearoa

Stories from the Walking Access Commission

Hearing from people who create, care for and treasure tracks and trails in Aotearoa

Grant Hunter has been organising rogaines on Canterbury farms for for twenty years. It's a different type of public access because rogainers need to roam over the land for a set event, rather than follow a formed path in their own time. He discusses biosecurity, health and safety, respecting farmers and other issues he deals with when organising events. You can read his full article on our website.

Photo credit: Wicked Rogaines

Rogaine New Zealand Walking Access Commission Canterbury Grant Hunter public access farming

Last month Sport NZ's Activity Survey revealed that walking is the most popular sport or recreation for adult New Zealanders. We talked to the Walking Access Commission Chief Executive Ric Cullinane about what the commission can do to support our hundreds of thousands of walkers across the country.

Photo by Thomas Schweighofer on Unsplash

walking tramping

Longstanding Walking Access Commission staff member Ric Cullinane has been appointed as the Commission’s new Chief Executive this month. Following his appointment, he took time to talk about what good public access looks like and the role the Commission plays helping private land owners with access issues.

Island Bay’s Manawa Karioi ecological restoration project has won a $5000 grant to erect signs and put in track markers that will help people walk local bush trails.

The money comes from the Walking Access Commission’s Enhanced Access Fund, which supports local groups to build and preserve outdoor access - especially tracks and trails.

We went to Manawa Karioi to meet Chris Livesey from the restoration project. He says that currently the tracks, none of which are marked, can be a confusing web for people who have not used them before. New map panels at the entrances to Manawa Karioi and colour-coded track markers will help more people to enjoy them.


Music is Black Cat Funky by reusenoise: - available under a creative commons (CC BY-NC 3.0) license.

Wellington Island Bay Walking Access trails

The Walking Access Commission's kaumātua, Korotau Tamiana, describes his early work training men to create trails into the previously inaccessible Te Urewera.

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Licence (external site) (CC BY 4.0) *The dawn chorus of birds in the background of the audio is from the Department of Conservation ( The album photo of Te Urewera National Park is by Aroha Pounamu on Flickr (

Urewera Peho Tamiana Māori