Unfortunately the Cascade Track in the Waitākere Ranges Regional Park is currently closed as of Feb 2020. Great day walk from Auckland. Cascade Walkway is a 4k medium walk that will take you around 4 hours to complete. The board walks help to protect the Kauri trees on the Cascade walk. Walk to Waitakere Dam and the Cascade Falls for a refreshing swim.
In the map above, if you zoom in on the walk, you’ll see all the following track points and their location. Each point has photos along with a description about each one.
The track starts at the information boards. Walk down hill through the picnic ground, cross the bridge to Upper Kauri track. Turn right, don’t let the carving scare you. The board walks help to protect the Kauri trees. The main stands of Kauri trees are on this track, they thin out just after the Lower Kauri track. So take this occasion and marvel at their beauty.
You will pass the turn off to Cascade loop track on your left. The next track you will walk past is the Lower Lauri track on your right. From here it is a steady walk up hill, don’t rush, enjoy the real NZ clean green native bush.
Caution, turn left on to Long Road and Simla track. The turn off to Long Road Track is deceiving. It is very easy to walk past this turn off. Read the sign post. The next sign you will see is a wooden sign saying Montana Heritage trail, this side track will escort you around the very slippery section of Long road. There is very little time difference if you take the side track. You have approximately 2 Hours 30 minutes of easy walking to make it back to the car park. There is still the dam and the tram track to visit, plus time out for lunch.
You can’t miss the Fence Line track turn off. There is a good grassy clearing with plenty of signs to point the way. Turn Left. After ten minutes you will pass Robinson Ridge Track on your left. Now it is downhill all the way, my kind of walking. The pine trees put down a carpet of soft pine needles for you to walk on, but this is offset by trying to step between the tree roots and not tripping over. You will be able to look out to your left and see the car park and the golf course from this section of track.
In all, this enjoyable walk runs along an old fence line. Think of the hours spent cutting and splitting the battens, running out the wire, living on camp oven bread and wild pig stew for months, just to walk away from it all. Poor buggers. When you break out on to the dam, 35 minutes, keep walking for another 5 Min to the next turn off. Turn left to continue on the trail. If you need a toilet, walk over to the other side of the dam, just five minutes.
Only one hour to go. Walk past the North end of Robinson Ridge Track. Now downhill again, don’t you just love it. You will be happy you took my advice and walked anticlockwise. At the bottom of the hill you will walk on to the Auckland City Walk. Now it gets confusing, there were no signs for us to follow so we took a five minute rest and as always someone will come along.
Left was to the cascade car park. Right, will bring you out on to the falls road, 300M above the cascade car park. We turned left and walked on to Cascade Falls. 10 Min into the walk is an excellent swimming hole. Cross the bridge, turn hard left, walk up the canyon for 8 Min to reach Cascade Falls. Back on the main track again and off to Cascade car park 15 Minutes. Pass the Upper Kauri Track on your left. Cross the bridge, up the hill and back to the car.
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