Whanganui River

This trip is now full, but we are taking registrations for a standby list.  With this trip being several months away, there are usually some cancellations for various reasons.

Whanganui River Trip - 24-30 April

Welcome to the annual Whanganui River Yakity Yak Club trip, please read this information carefully and let us know if you have any questions.   We meet at Ohinepane on Sunday 24 April, where we set up camp and shuttle the cars back to Taumaranui where they will stay for the duration.  Next morning, after Pete's briefing, we hit the water for 6 days of adventure.

This is a wilderness trip with no road access and weather conditions that can be hot to cold, wet to dry, and windy to calm.  Conditions can be extreme, please pack accordingly.

This is a true wilderness experience. Please note that in 6 days we cover approximately 120 km and the daily distances vary between 10-30km, all downstream so not too strenuous.  This is an easy Grade 2 river with about 150 rapids. These are not difficult and are well within the capabilities of confident club members.   Except for PLB and Sat Phone in case of emergency, there is no communication with the outside world and we are totally self-reliant. The campsites consist of a small shelter with a water tank, long drop toilets, some flat(ish) places where you can pitch your tent.

Each day will end with a debriefing and planning for the next day where everyone will be able to voice their ideas and a consensus as to the progression of the next day’s paddle will be agreed.

There are cabins at some of the camping areas, if you want to book these let Peter know. Good tents are essential as most campsites have no accommodation.

Pete is head chef, but everyone is expected to pitch in and help with food preparation, cooking, cleaning up and other group chores.   
You will need to carry approximately two 15 litre dry bags filled with food in your kayak so please leave space. We will need some people to go in open two-man canoes, as this is the way we transport the bulk food and cooking equipment, if you are keen please give Peter a call.

Meeting place - meet at Ohinepane DOC Campsite 18 km down stream from the bridge at Taumarunui. This is a great campsite, and we will all meet here no later than 1pm on Sunday the 24th of April.

Directions to Ohinepane Camp site
From the North
Driving to Taumarunui from Te Kuiti, as you reach Taumarunui, do not turn left over the bridge into the town, instead go straight ahead on Route 43 towards Stratford.
From the South
If you are arriving at Taumarunui from the south, go through the town over the bridge and turn left on Route 43 towards Stratford.

Now continue on Route 43 beside the river for 18 kilometres or so, and just after a right-hand hairpin turn you will see the signpost to Ohinepane on the left.  CAUTION: THE TURN INTO THE DRIVE IS TIGHT WITH A LARGE DROP IF YOU GET IT WRONG.
We will sort all our equipment out here on the 24th and then drivers will drive to Taumarunui where we will have arranged secure storage for cars at Taumarunui. We will then get a ride back to Ohinepane and stay the night.  Dinner is supplied on Sunday night. After breakfast on Monday we will have a briefing and a lesson in river reading and safety.

At the end of the trip we will be picked up a bus and trailer and returned to our cars at the Taumarunui on Saturday at 4pm to 6pm (ish). 

Shared costs
This trip is run on a shared cost basis, no one is paid for their time either organising, planning, purchasing, or packing food etc

The costs for this trip are as follows, 
Shuttles & parking           $80
DOC camp fees $16 per night 5 nights           $80
Posh Pioneers Camping and 3 course dinner and breakfast, and hot showers $125
Or stay in a Posh Pioneers wagon for an extra $70
Food per person         $150

Total costs camping         $435
Total cost including Posh Pioneers wagon $505

Posh Pioneers is located at Maharanui site which will be the second night camping.  It is owned and operated by Heather and Fritz, who some of you will remember from a certain memorable trip.


To book online, please click here... 

If you have any questions please email peter at pete@canoeandkayak.co.nz and please pay your DOC fees of $80 to Pete when you book. This will allow him to secure your camping booking asap.  The remainder is due by the 1st of April to Peter Townend 03-0180-0097478-002

We can only book campsites when we have the names of those intending to go, so bookings will open now and will close at the end of January or as soon as we have 20 people.

Cancellations If you need to cancel, please contact Peter as soon as possible and we will be able to let you know what we can do.

If you need a kayak or canoe, let Peter know and he will sort them out for you and can help with transport if needed. 

There is a limited number of places which will fill fast, but we will have a standby list in case of cancellations.  

A week or two before the trip we will have a trip planning meeting where we will show photos, discuss logistics, car pooling, things we have learned, answer questions etc.

Menu Ideas (food supplied by Peter)
Roast chicken, pasta and veg
BBQ, salads and potatoes
Spaghetti Bolognaise and salads
Corn beef and onion sauce, mashed potatoes, and vegies
Roast beef, potatoes and vegies
Three course meal, at Posh Pioneers

Custard and fruit salad, pancakes, chocolate pudding,

Fruit salad
Bacon & eggs
Posh Pioneers

Tomato, Cheese, Cucumber, Carrot, Salami, Lettuce
Tinned fish

Spreads; Peanut butter, jam, honey, vegemite

Chocolate Bars
Crackers, Cheese, Patè

Take any extra snacks you may need, supply your own beer, wine etc


Paddling Gear
Spray Deck
Split paddle (optional)
Buoyancy Aid (compulsory)
Whistle attached to BA
Sun Hat 
Sunglasses (preferably with UV protection and on a strap)
Sharkskins, or Polypro or Merino top & leggings 
Paddle shorts
Paddle Jacket
Drink bottles
Sun Block & Lip Block
Paddling gloves
Helmet (recommended – hireage $5 per day)
20m throw-rope (compulsory)

Camping Gear
Tarp or fly & ropes for extra shelter
Sleeping bag and liner
Thermo-rest or similar
Small pillow 
Camp chair
Torch or Head Torch & Spare batteries
Towel, soap, toothbrush etc
Toilet paper (compulsory – there is none supplied!)
Insect Repellent
Plate, bowl, mug, cutlery etc
Drinks – wine, beer etc.

Day pack
Pack of cards, Book, Game
Cell phone (won’t work on the river)
Money for ice-creams on the drive back to the cars.

For use in camp and if the weather turns cold.
Set(s) of polypro or merino (top & leggings)
Fleece or woollen mid-layer 
Fleece or woollen top-layer
Woollen Beanie
Thermal gloves
Rain coat & waterproof trousers
Socks and underwear
Walking shoes
Pegs and rope for drying stuff
Ear plugs in case of snoring neighbours
Hot water bottle (optional)
Gumboots (trust me)

First Aid / Emergency Kit 
Personal Medication 
Pocket knife or Multi-tool
Waterproof Sticking Plasters
Roll Sticking Plaster (wide)
Crepe Bandage
Triangular Bandage
Sterile Dressings
Scissors (sharp)
Safety Pins
Pain Relief Tablets
Antihistamine tablets
Antiseptic solution or cream
Paper and pencil (not pen)
Survival Blanket or Bag (compulsory)
Duct tape (compulsory)
Steering cable or cord

Please note the above list is not guaranteed to be complete!!  It is a guide only, please use your initiative and don’t blame me if you find you have forgotten something vital that I have not listed.  If you think of something that is missing, please tell me and I will amend it for next time.

Regarding clothing – we suggest 

  • one set of wet gear for on the river and wear that every day
  • one set of clothing to wear in camp (+ extra underwear)
  • one extra set of camp clothes in case it gets wet or cold (and it can get very wet and cold, be prepared)
  • emergency set of polypro in your emergency kit

Anything that needs to stay dry must be packed into dry bags.  A number of small dry bags are better than one large one.  Recommended maximum size is 20 litres as anything bigger is difficult to get into your hatches.

Please note – it is important that you do a trial pack of your kayak to ensure that you can fit everything in – it is no good finding out at the departure point that you have too much stuff. Don’t forget space for the two 15 litre dry bags filled with communal food that you will need to carry.

Please inform Pete in advance of any relevant medical conditions. It doesn't mean you can't go, but we do need to know about it!

If time and conditions permit, there will be a walk up to the Bridge to Nowhere.  Take suitable walking shoes.

Please note

No one will be allowed on the trip if they do not have 

  • Personal first aid kit with personal medication as required (please advise Peter if help is required with any medication in an emergency).

  • A 20 metre throw rope, (not a piece of rope) this is our minimum rescue equipment.

  • Adequate warm clothing and camping equipment.

Questions, silly or not, will be warmly received by Peter on 0274 529255. Please leave a message on this number if not answered.  He is often unable to answer it for extended periods due to excessive work, family and fishing commitments.  He will call you back.

As this is a club trip we will need keen club leaders to lead on the river please call Peter if you would like to help.

Looking forward to a fun trip with fun kayaking, sunny skies, under the stars, full bellies and lots of laughter.

The spice of life!
Cheers Peter T


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