Auckland Baptist Tramping Club

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On a lovely, warm, late winter's morning 13 of us met at the Hunua Falls carpark. The plan was to walk the loop of Massey-Cossey tracks with a side walk along the Wairoa river from the Cossey Access Road. Due to the partial closure of the Cossey track through the Cossey gorge however, we had to adjust our plans and complete the circuit coming down from Cossey Dam via the Cossey Access Road.

The group set out together from the carpark after the obligatory photos of the rather full Hunua falls! Very soon after heading on to the Massey track we climbed steadily over 3km to a height of 380m. It was a steady climbed that split the group into two groups. The nine faster walkers headed on to Cossey’s dam while the more leisurely group of four brought up the rear. The track climbs through regenerating bush made up largely of podocarp that have grown over the last 70 odd years since the dams were built in the Hunua catchment area (1950’s). The track skirts areas where Kokako recovery efforts are under way with a very successful programme that now has over 220 breeding pairs in the Hunua ranges.
Lunch was enjoyed in sunshine at Cosseys dam with swallow and piwakawaka flying round. Bryan shared devotions on the significance of water to the health of the human body and the need to care for our environment. The symbolism of water in scripture in relating to living water and eternal life was particularly relevant in the setting of Auckland’s main water catchment.

Due to the partial closure of the Cossey’s track we returned via the Cossey’s Access road that winds it way back down from the dam. The sun was strong and warm. At the base of the hill nine of the group did a further 4km walking along the McNicol track that sidles along the banks of the Wairoa river. The drop down from the road is steep and slippery but was negotiated successfully by the group who then continued along a very pleasant walk through a mix of regenerating bush, pine forest and abandoned paddocks. Returning via the same route we all met up again at the Hunua Falls carpark.

The circuit route was just over 9km and took us close on 4 hours to complete. The walk along the Wairoa River added another 4kms for the faster group who also competed the total walk in just over 4 hours. A good workout with very pleasant company on a very spring-like day!

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