Kakahu and Waitohi Bush – Day trip 3rd August
Kakahu bush is situated in Hall Road. It is approximately 15kms from Geraldine and approx. 45kms from Timaru. We drove via Pleasant Point and Seven Sisters road on to Winchester-Hanging Rock Road. Start of walk is from the car park by the historic lime kiln. Kakahu Bush is a 365 hectare protected area, which has a diverse range of geological, botanical and historical features. It is owned and managed by two charitable trusts who have opened it to the public. The walk takes in some interesting features and takes approximately 3 hour to do the loop. It took us longer as we spent quite some time taking stops to talk and observe the historical sites, bush, and birdlife – I saw woodpigeon, bellbirds, fantails. The bush observed included totara, kanuka, broadleaf, lancewood, kahikatea and more.. Some interesting rock features such as the balancing rock and large rock pinnacles. From Pinnacle lookout point there are great panoramic views over Kakahu Bush and the plains to the north and south.
After finishing the loop track we crossed the road and walked in to the large limestone escarpment for lunch. This is a great short walk and excellent information is displayed at the Kiln.
From here we drove to Waitohi Bush which was a ten minute drive from Hall Road, turning on to Limestone road to the top of the hill, then following along the top across Saddle Road and eventually Waitohi Bush Reserve. There is a small camping area with water and toilet available. We did a short walk, Kowhai track then returning by Cabbage tree track. This took around 45 minutes. Waitohi bush is surrounded by an open plantation and the bush in the reserve includes mahoe, lemonwood, black matipo, red matipo, kowhai, kanuka, lancewood, fuchia and more. We did enjoy some birdlife here too.
After the storm overnight the day turned out very pleasant with calm and mild temperatures. It was about a 20 minute drive back to Timaru from here. Those who attended were John, Hazel, Chris, Martin and myself.