A grand short walk– Sunday 31 July 2016goathill

Nine trampers started at the lower entrance of the Goat Hill Track near the corner of Wharf Road and the main road in Okiwi Bay (the first side road in the village), but the signpost is not easy to see from the main road. The track climbs at a good gradient on broad zigzags in luxuriant bush, but the track surface was very greasy and slippery in places. We had a welcome stop after 20 minutes at the first lookout point which overlooked Okiwi Bay. The gradient eased off as we traversed the main ridgeline of Goat Hill with some large windfalls (since cleared). The summit at 395m is not marked but has a very convenient bench seat with a view out of the bush to the sparkling waters of Croisilles Harbour and D’Urville Island in the far distance. This had only taken us 1½ hours but we continued on for 15 minutes to Goat Saddle where the track comes out on the main road again.

We returned to the Goat Hill lookout for lunch and again enjoy the superb sea views on a fine sunny day. We returned back the same way to the cars without anyone slipping over on the greasy sections. This was only about four hours return, so with time to spare we drove down and parked at the Okiwi Bay beachfront for a short walk. We followed a pleasant bush track up beside Ruataniwha Stream for ten minutes then looped back through the streets of Okiwi Bay village to the cars. The Goat Hill Track is a grand short walk, but it’s a pity there aren’t more of these walks in this area. The pack was Robert, Jocelyn, Colin, Uta, Chris and Jo, Julian, David S, and Val.