36km, Grade 2/easy to Grade 3/intermediate (on-road sections are Grade 3/intermediate). 3–6 hours
After some hearty breakkie, grab your bike and head for the Alps. You'll pass remnants of the gold rush before arriving at the Kapitea Reservoir. Pass the lake then head on to the Loopline Reservoir and its 'spillway', for a close up look at the stone face dam that was hand-laid in 1883 by miners during the gold rush.
Carry on to the sweeping boardwalk that connects Loopline Road, then ride the gravel trail out to Old Christchurch Road. From here you'll follow water race, old logging trams and pack track up the Kawaka Valley, passing man-made dams and fresh mountain-water weirs.
Say 'howdy' to the Southern Alps, and when you reach the Waitaiki Reserve you'll begin your descent through ancient Podocarp forest until you reach a sprawling suspension bridge through the trees.
Nearly there! The home run continues through more beautiful native bush, before passing through a replica Wild West town to arrive at Milltown, where you’ll find a car park and shelter.
If you’re not carrying on to Lake Kaniere, where there are holiday-homes for rent and a DOC campground, or to the West Coast hub-town of Hokitika, then this is a good place to get picked up by a local shuttle or tour operator.
They will happily transport you and bikes to your accommodation, and drop you back at the trail the next day. Mobile phone coverage is patchy in this area so it’s important to pre-arrange any transport.
This section's more challenging than Day 1 but the trail's stellar - making for smooth, comfy riding - and the few short steep sections are also the most scenic. So if you don't feel like riding, no sweat! They'll be just as enjoyable to walk.
Fitness New Zealand is one of NZ's leading GARMIN stockists - with the largest range available, and friendly expert advise, dealing with a small locally owned business will guarantee you will get great service. Garmin watches and bike computers to record your adventures.
New Zealand’s premier cycle tour company offering premium quality all-inclusive cycle tours with the best bikes, accommodation and restaurants, full vehicle-support and personal service. We aim to exceed your expectations and provide the best possible experience of the trails.
Pacific Cycle Tours is a family-owned and operated New Zealand tour company, providing outstanding cycling tours for the past 25 years. We specialise in small group, quality, multi-day, multi-trail E bike tours. An unforgettable adventure, designed for you.
For a restful night's sleep after your invigorating ride. Our comfortable Chalets are modern and fully equipped with Garden and Veranda, Cycle storage & Parking, Breakfast on request. Pop into our on-site Store & Café for Great Coffee, Groceries, Fresh Doughnuts, Sandwiches, Packed Lunches, gifts and Cycle accessories. We look forward to giving you a warm welcome.
The only mobile app designed for the NZ Great Rides and a national partner of the NZ Cycle Trail.
Working offline it offers GPS tracking, over 1,500+ pages of maps, photos and trail section descriptions
The app includes the West Coast Wilderness Trail. Download it free today!
Our team know the trail and the West Coast thoroughly. We can provide advice and book your entire trip and experience from accommodation and transportation to bike hire, shuttles and activities.
Kiwi Journeys are your trusted cycle tour operator specialising in self-guided and supported tours on the West Coast Wilderness Trail and Nelson’s Great Taste Trail. We offer everything you need to enjoy these top Great Rides – from bike hire, transport and accommodation, to personal advice and insider tips.
Just south of the Taramakau Bridge take a short diversion and enjoy a delicious breakfast or lunch, fantastic coffee, 12 flavours of real ice cream, smoothies and a great selection of affordable, quality food to eat in or pack to take on the trail, including gluten free options. Watch the live bees at work, purchase local honey products and check out their daily deals. Free self-contained camping.
Discover more of the Coast while on your Wilderness Trail experience. The Hokitika Gorge, Punakaiki, the Glaciers – whatever you want to see and do. We will pick-up and deliver back to your location. Pick-up and drop-off anywhere within the Hokitika or Greymouth area is also available by arrangement. Group discounts available and we hold a DOC concession.
This restored historic villa is available as a whole home or individual double/twin rooms. Full kitchen for self catering. Also available are 4 bed dorms, space for tents and small camper vans. BBQ in outside undercover kitchen, wifi and hot showers all walking distance from the local hotel. Wild gardens with abundant birds.
... our cycling tours are designed for women, guided by women, loved by women Cycling with a twist - our tours are truly special! After three days of cycling, we take you to one of the last little secret spots on the coast for an unforgettable kayaking and walking experience. Our accommodation is all about comfort and charm. Our prices are all-inclusive.
Cycle Journeys provides you with a one stop service when planning your ride on the Wilderness Trail. Choose your bike hire from our fleet of over 200 bikes (including more than 30 E-Bikes), luggage transfer, accommodation bookings, shuttle to the start and finish of the trail. We can even arrange group transport from Christchurch.
At Natural High we believe exploring New Zealand by bicycle is the best way to truly experience this remarkable country.
Whether you're looking for bike rental for a weekend or a grand cycle tour of the whole country, someone in our Auckland or Christchurch branches will talk you through all your options, and give you the best possible advice. Contact us for all your bike hire, accessories, touring and group tour needs nationwide.
Great Coffee, Fresh cut Sandwiches, Quality Pies, Home Made Doughnuts, Packed Lunches.
Right in the heart of Kumara village, cycle spares, gifts, groceries stocked, quality modern motel units available. We look forward to giving you a warm welcome.
Discover fascinating stories of real New Zealanders and experience a recreated gold-rush village. West Coast isolation, extreme weather and rugged terrain produced stories of fortitude and ingenuity. Shantytown tells these pioneering stories through a fascinating mix of experience and displays.
Ride the Steam Train through native rainforest, experience the sights and sounds of a working sawmill, watch the sluice gun blast gold bearing rock and soil from the earth, then follow the races to the gold claim and pan for your own gold.
The village, with 30 shops and buildings to explore shows life the way it used to be. Catch the show in our new holographic theatre. For a memento of Shantytown nothing is better than an old time photo.
Located in Christchurch Tuatara Tours runs 4 day fully guided and catered tours on the West Coast Wilderness Trail. Let us take care of the details, leaving you more time to relax and explore. We can collect you from Christchurch or Greymouth.
Trail Transport is a shuttle and bike hire service allowing you easy, convenient access to the West Coast Wilderness Trail between Greymouth and Ross. We are based in Greymouth at Colls Sports World, where we have the latest bikes, E bikes and accessories for hire or sale with an onsite bike mechanic. Owned and operated by Coasters with a wealth of cycling and local knowledge.
We operate a 6 day tour of the Wilderness Trail and beyond with full vehicle support, quality ensuite accommodation and wholesome meals. Venture beyond the Wilderness Trail to experience more of the West Coast region. Ebikes available. Start/finish from Christchurch.
Explore NZ's favourite cycle trails with the company that has helped pioneer fully supported cycling trips in New Zealand for over 20 years.
Our West Coast Wilderness Cycle includes transport from Christchurch, accommodation, a qualified guide, vehicle support, most meals, entry to the Treetops Walkway and TranzAlpine train journey to Christchurch.
Visit our website for details
Kumara is a former gold mining town where many came to seek their fortune, particularly the Irish. The town was once the home of the most famous West Coaster, Richard John Seddon, Premier of the Liberal Government from 1893 until his death in 1906.
Today, Kumara is a service town for tourists and farmers. The race course at Kumara provides a base for competitors and their support teams heading off on the annual Coast to Coast endurance race and the annual race meeting brings thousands of visitors each year.
Kumara offers lots for the outdoor enthusiast from tramping, hunting and fishing to fossicking for gold. Lake Brunner and the Taramakau River offer magnificent scenery and great brown trout fishing while the lower Taramakau is famous for its whitebait runs.
A professionally run Hokitika based shuttle service that can transport you, your bike or luggage to all points on the trail. We have plenty of local knowledge and are keen to help you with all aspects of your planning. We can arrange bike hire.
The West Coast’s only restored gold-rush miners’ hotel offers a variety of accommodation, welcoming restaurant and bar with hearty meals, cosy fireplace and secure bike storage. Hotel rooms include Victorian decor, antique furnishings and modern amenities. The replica Miners Cottages, McEnaneys ensuite cottage rooms and the Old Bank of New Zealand are perfect for cycling couples and groups.
Lake Kaniere Homestay overlooks the northern shore of the lake, not 50 meters away. The house is set in native bush, on a cul-de-sac, lakeside road with very little traffic and great views of the lake and surrounding mountains.
Get the inside word on NZ’s most loved trail with the official Wilderness Trail guide book.Buy now
Building the West Coast Wilderness Trail and keeping it clean and beautiful takes a lot, every little bit helps. Thank you for your support. See you on the trail!Donate now