It is so awesome to have a new DOC hut in the Kaimai’s. Te Whare Okioki is situated at the Ngamuwahine Shelter along the North South track (southern end) and is accessible from heaps of tracks.
My sister and I decided to meet up and take the kids for an adventure. We ended up booking the whole hut and having 5 families enjoying the experience together – for 4 of the kids this was their first overnighter 💪.
3 adults and 5 kids (5,6,7 and two x 8 year olds) walked in along the Ngamarama Track from Whakamarama in the East 👇
3 adults and 3 kids (10,11,12) walked in along the Te Tuhi Track from the West 👇
We made a plan to meet at the North South track junction and had also made arrangements to leave a signal or note if your group decided to head off to the hut if the other group took longer than expected (no cell phone reception). But we did meet up and walked the last 1-1.5 hours together.
For more information about the hut and the tracks we took, click the links above 👆
The west-side team’s walking time fitted in with DOC signage, but the east-side team’s walking time was 1.5 hours longer than stated on the sign – always longer with little legs.
We used plenty of distractions for the little ones coming in from the east:
Click here for other tips on walking with kids over and under 5.
I think next time I would plan to stay 2 nights at the hut, then the kids could have a day to play, rest and just be before walking out. I’d recommend this, especially with younger children (<10) walking in from Whakamarama.
This hut has been fully booked out every Saturday since it opened. It goes to show – “Build it, and they will come” Awesome mahi by Kaimai Ridgeway Trust 💪🥾🔨
Enjoy! Anita 🥜✌️
Category: Featured, WalksTags: #kids, adventure, Featured, free, hiking, hiking with kids, Kaimai, kaimai ranges, kid friendly, Kids in nature, nature, New Zealand, parenting, Staying in a hut, Te Whare Okioki