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Eight members of Hikers 1 assembled at the Karangahake Gorge Carpark. Spirits are rather dampened and raincoats donned at the prospect of the rain setting in.

  After setting off across the Lower Waitawheta Gorge Bridge we climb a few staircases that lead to the Windows Walk. This is a must see section that gives you an appreciation of the engineering skills involved in the gold mining operations.

We continue on the green and undulating Crown Track that sits high above the Waitawheta River. Torches are at the ready for the two tunnels ahead, the second one being 180 metres long. Shortly we cross the Suspension Bridge that leads us onto the Dubbo Track. You enter a cool and lush area of high canopy trees with many nikau palms, banks of ferns and some interesting fungi. Allow a good hour to walk this gradual but unrelenting rise, apart from a descent to a stream crossing, to meet with the County Rd Track. Now we know it's all downhill from here.

We're back in the sunlight and descend gradually on a metalled 4WD track taking in glimpses of the Waitawheta Valley - a scenic outlook for a lunch spot. On down until we reach the short cut via Scotsman's Gully back to the Car Park. A highly recommended hike for its variety.

This was a 4 hour hike  including lunch. Coffee was well-earned at the Talisman's Rest opposite the Car Park.

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