Planning on riding the Great Lake Trail? Contact us for help in planning your itinerary and booking your trip. Contact Great Lake Shuttles for transportation to/from the track start and Taupo.
The Lake Track will follows the edge of Lake Taupo on an all-weather track through native forest. It is fantastically done, and provides for hours of riding on smooth, flowy, shared-used single track. Currently (as of March 2013) there is 32 kms of track open for riding. Once developed, the Great Lake Trail will run for 93 kilometres and will be suitable for riders of average fitness. Cyclists can expect stunning views across Lake Taupo to Tongariro National Park and a pumice soil surface track allowing for all weather riding.
We suggest starting that the Whangamata Road car park, some 45 minutes away from Taupo - there are a number of operators in the region that can bring you to the track start and collect you when you're finished - alternatively, you can ride the full 55+ kms back to Taupo. Theft is a problem at the Whangamata car park, so ensure your vehicle is locked with valuables hidden!
Leaving the Whangamata Road start, you have approximately nine kms of undulating single track that leaves you at Kawakawa Bay. It's a lovely spot for a swim, or if you wanted you could set up camp for the night. Leaving Kawakawa Bay, you have a well graded 4 km climb before the view opens up for stunning views out across Lake Taupo. Some thrilling downhill awaits that leaves you in the peaceful little village of Kinloch. Here there are a number of cafes where you can grab lunch or a coffee on the lake.
Leaving Kinloch, you have another grunty but well graded climb - the track climbs for three or four kms before you have the option to turn off on the Headland Trail. This is an extra 9.5 km loop on more great single track - this appears to get slightly less use and was somewhat overgrown, but still a fantastic ride. The trail finishes with long, flowly downhill through more native bush and leaves you at Whakaipo Bay.
Here you can get a lift back to Taupo, or alternatively ride the 15 kms back to town. This is a truly fantastic ride - arguably one of the best on the North Island.