Ohakune — Taihape (5-7 hours, 77km)
RIDING THE TRAIL
Warning: This stretch of highway should only be ridden from north to south, as the there is not adequate shoulder width on the west side of the highway to ride from south to north.
From the Ohakune Railway Station, cross the railway line on Ohakune Mountain Road. Then turn right on Railway Row. After 1 km, re-cross the railway line and turn left down Dreadnought Road and cycle to Rangataua village.
Cycle down Marino Road to Highway 49. Turn left and ride along the highway to Karioi Station Road. This highway is narrow in places, so ride with care and choose times with less traffic – early in the morning or during lunch time.
From the intersection with Karioi Station Road, take Highway 49 southeast for 200 metres. Turn right into Whangaehu Valley Road. Just on 25km from Ohakune, turn left up Owhakura Road. Follow Owhakura Road to Rangiwaea Junction.
From Rangiwaea Junction, turn right down Turakina Valley Road. Turn left onto Ruanui Road, and climb away from the Turakina Valley to Mataroa.
Ride through Mataroa village and follow Mataroa Road to Highway 1 almost 4km away.
The next 3km takes you along Highway 1 to the outskirts of Taihape. Approximately 300 metres of this stretch of highway has a narrow shoulder and must be ridden with care, keeping as far left as practicable (ie, left of the white shoulder line).
Train or bus to Ohakune.
Take Kiwimap Wanganui, Marton, Taihape.
There is a 3km section along State Highway 1 to Taihape. It takes about 13 minutes to cycle. Pay attention and cycle with care along this busy 100 kph section.
There are services and accommodation at Ohakune and Taihape only.
Acknowledgment: The information for this write up is from Classic New Zealand Cycle Trails by the Kennett Brothers.