Date: 16 January 2020
The tracks were closed to protect the public and contractors while the upgrade work was underway.
The following tracks have now reopened:
- Kiwiriki Track
- Line W Track
- Maungapiko Lookout Track
- Old Lady Walk
- Old Mill Track
- South Fork Track
- Tramline Track, Whangaparapara
- Warren's Creek Track/Bridle Tracks
- Whangaraparapa Campsite Track
- Withey's Track.
The tracks now join the most popular walks of Aotea – including the Hirakimata Summit, Windy Canyon and Kaitoke Hot Springs tracks – that are already upgraded to help prevent the spread of the disease.
DOC Aotea Great Barrier Island Operations Manager, George Taylor, says the upgrades will help fight the spread of the disease on Aotea.
"Kauri dieback is caused by microscopic spores that thrive in wet and muddy conditions, and can be spread on footwear.
"The upgrade has removed wet and muddy parts of these tracks by installing sections of boardwalk and spreading a bark-gravel mix to provide a walking surface that will stay mud-free.
"Box step stairways have been installed on steep sections of tracks, along with barriers, to protect kauri in forest bordering the tracks.
"As well as protecting kauri, the upgrades have made walking these tracks easier and more enjoyable for people of all ages."
The public has a vital role to play in protecting kauri from kauri dieback.
"It's important for people to stay on the open tracks and thoroughly clean their footwear when they enter and leave a kauri area," George Taylor says.
The tracks are in the Aotea Conservation Park, which covers more than 12,000 hectares (43%) of Aotea.
The park is run by DOC, assisted by the Aotea Conservation Park Advisory Committee. The committee has 10 representatives from iwi and the community on Aotea.
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