Caring for New Zealand

* Tramping Biosecurity *

Heading into the Wilderness?

If you are, its important to remember not to do any damage to the areas that you visit.

Here are some important things to remember when you head into the Wilderness;

  • Don’t leave any rubbish, pack everything up and take it with you out again to dispose of when you get out of the bush.
  • Scrub your boots and check for weed seeds before you go into Wilderness areas. Otherwise you can unwittingly spread weeds around in pristine areas.
  • If you see noxious weeds in a wilderness area, its great to pull them out if you can. Make sure you have the identification right though! Don’t pull anything out unless you are sure of what it is.
  • Don’t do any damage to native plants or wildlife.
  • Don’t use detergent and soap in streams and rivers.
  • Keep to tracks. In some areas, such as alpine herbfields, these plants take decades to recover if damaged.
  • Give something back; make wilderness areas even better by
    volunteering for a tree planting scheme, or pest control, such as in the Ark in the Park bird reserve in the Waitakeres. It also looks great on your resume.

Kauri Dieback

The spread of Kauri Dieback has led to the closure of a range of tracks and areas near Auckland, including most of the Waitakere Ranges, and some tracks in the Hunuas. A comprehensive list of the current status of tracks around Auckland is available here.

Use of these closed tracks is prohibited by law, and AUTC does not condone accessing these restricted areas or tracks without a council-issued permit. AUTC has negotiated limited access to some of these areas for the purposes of conducting environmental and maintenance work, but these trips can only be organised by our environmental and hut officers. If you would like more information, or to get involved in our environmental work, get in touch at environmental@autc.org.nz

Kauri Dieback is caused by Phytophthora Agathicida, a fungus-like pathogen that attacks plant root systems and eventually kills infected plants. It spreads through movement of contaminated soil; mostly by humans, and has no known cure. More info can be found here.

In 2017 the council released a report which found that the number of kauri with the disease has doubled in the past 5 years, reaching about 20% of all kauri in the Waitakeres. It also found human activity as a primary source of spread.