$245,000 for Great Lake Trail

A new 15 kilometre extension to the Great Lake Trail will improve safety for cyclists and help promote Taupō as a cycling destination, says Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis.

The Government has committed $245,000 from the Ngā Haerenga, New Zealand Cycle Trail: Enhancement and Extension Fund for the Otaketake Link, which will branch off the K2K Track, between Kawakawa Bay and Kinloch, and run to the start of the Orakau Track.

“Supporting thriving and sustainable regions is a priority for this Government. It’s estimated almost 18,000 riders will use the new track in the first year alone, bringing in an additional $1 million in visitor spending to the region,” Kelvin Davis said.

“Many cyclists currently ride along the road from Kinloch to reach the start of the Orakau Track. This new link will provide a safer alternative and will create a scenic 30 kilometre loop that will add to the general appeal of the Great Lake Trail.

“The trail currently sits at 71 kilometres in length and provides an excellent, all-seasons riding experience through native forests with views across Lake Taupō to the Tongariro National Park.”

The total cost of the Otaketake Link project is around $360,000, with local sources contributing the remaining funding. The trail extension will take around eight months to complete.

“Like all the Great Rides, the Great Lake Trail attracts visitors throughout the year, helping the local economy and job market by reducing the seasonality of the visitor industry,” Kelvin Davis said.

Ngā Haerenga, the New Zealand Cycle Trail is a network of 22 premier and predominately off-road Great Rides across the country, used by more than a million people per year.