Walk status: Off-lead
If you're a fan of Kakamatua Beach then you're probably passed the entrance to the Pipeline Road many times without even noticing it. Talking with a local dog walker one day, they told me about it so I decided to head off in the morning to explore it before some forecasted heavy rain was due.
The entrance is quite hidden unless you're paying attention, so put 394 Huia Road into Google Maps which will bring you directly to the entrance and also to Exhibition Drive. Parking around here is pretty limited as there's nowhere suitable to park on Huia Road. I found pulling onto Exhibition Drive and parking up as far to the left as possible was best. Many others had done the same.
Enter via the main gate, you can see many more tracks noted on the sign (see photo), however this sign is quite misleading as it doesn't show the portion of track we actually walked that day. You don't really need to take note of the sign as its pretty easy to navigate but you may want to explore some of the others marked.
Heading up the gravel hill you'll soon reach the dog owners sign which advises that dogs are allowed off lead here. There were a few others using the track that day, but it wasn't super busy. Shortly past the sign is a fork in the road leading round to the left. You'll see on the GPS map that we headed this way initially but when I saw it looked to be a short walk down to the main road I turned back and headed straight down the hill instead. So if you're planning to just walk the Pipeline you can just head straight at this point.
It's a gravel path so a good option for wet weather, although it is a bit challenging with the hills. Its manageable, and I huffed and puffed my way along and we didn't make it the whole way due to the weather starting to turn so I imagine if you did the whole track you'd be pretty stuffed by the end!
There were many small tracks off into the bush along the main route, although it wasn't obvious where any of them lead and there aren't any direction markers to give you any hints. The sign at the entrance states "Pipeline Road" and another sign says "Pipeline Track" both pointing in the same direction, we walked what was shown on the GPS as Pipeline Road, but potentially there is actually another track somewhere thats the actual Pipeline Track. If you find it, let me know! We walked the road and turned around when the weather started turning but will walk the whole track eventually so I document the full length.
If you head to the end of Exhibition Drive when you return to your car you'll find the entrance to the Beveridge Track, but on the day we went there seemed to be a lot more people using this track entrance than the Pipeline entrance and again its very limited parking up there too.
Location: Opposite 394 Huia Road, Huia
Carparking is very limited, park on Exhibition Drive.
Things to know:
There are no toilets here
The gate is locked to vehicles, but walkers and bike riders still have access