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Waimakiriri River Access Points

This table details Fish & Game access points to the Waimakiriri River.

Waimakariri - North Side


The Mouth - North Side

The mouth can be accessed on the north side through the Kairaki township.


McIntosh's Rocks

Take the shingle road (Ferry Road) on the right-hand side which departs from the Kaiapoi to Kairaki Road as it sweeps to the left, two kilometres short of the mouth. Park at the end of this track and walk over the stop-bank to the rocks.


The Banana Hole

The Banana Hole is on the north bank of the Waimakariri, a few hundred metres below the old highway bridge. Turn left just over the bridge onto the shingle track which leads out to the river. Follow the track downstream and fish off the rocks at the end.

Waimakariri Mouth - North Side


Waimakariri Mouth - South Side

The south side of the mouth can be accessed on motorbike or 4WD vehicle through the locked gate at Spencer Park. Keys for this gate and beach permits are available (at a cost) from the Spencer Park Ranger.


Stewarts Gully

This foot access only track starts by the gate which leads to the yacht club at Stewarts Gully.


Old Main North Road - South Side

This track runs off the Old Main North Road next to Readymix Concrete and goes a short distance upstream to the confluence of the South Branch. It also goes a couple of kilometres downstream before ending at a locked gate just below Stewarts Gully.


Waimakariri South Branch/Otukaikino Stream

Between July-September 2007 anglers may experience some problems accessing the eastern side of the Waimakariri South Branch/Otukaikino Stream below Dickeys Road.  ECan are planning to reconstruct a 580m length of the stopbank starting 500m downstream of Dickeys Rd (on the true right bank of Otukaikino Stream). Read more/View an aerial photo of the area.

Waimakariri River - North


North Side (SH1 to Browns Rock)

A system of riverside roads and stop-banks run along the north side of the river between SH1 and Browns Rock, which provide excellent access to the river. This track starts underneath the old highway bridge and runs to Browns Rock, just a few kilometres short of the Gorge.



Take the Harman Gorge Road, turn left into the shingle track at the bottom of the cutting near the Woodstock Homestead and follow the signs out to the river. This is a popular boat launching spot which also provides access for foot anglers.

Waimakariri River - South


SH1 to McLeans Island

Good access is available from the stop-bank running along this stretch of river. The stop-bank can be accessed from the top at McLeans Island or from Dickeys Road at the bottom.

McLeans Island to the Gorge: A number of roads running from Old West Coast Road lead to the river. The most commonly used are:

Weedons Ross Road

Runs off the Old West Coast Road.


Thompsons Road

Runs off the Old West Coast Road.


Intake Road

Runs off the Old West Coast Road.


Courtenay Road

Runs off the Old West Coast Road.


Cooks Road

Runs off the Old West Coast Road.


Kimberley Road

Runs off the Old West Coast Road.


Gorge Bridge - South Side

The Waimakariri Gorge Bridge is on SH72 (Waddington to Oxford). A shingle track leads down the terrace and out onto the riverbed. This is a popular boat launching spot.


Keens Road

Keens Road (near Springfield) leads to Kowai River which can be followed downstream to the confluence with the Waimakariri. This area is known locally as Cabbage Tree Flat.


Mt White Bridge

Turn right into a shingle track just before SH73 reaches the Waimakariri. This track leads down the terrace to the Mt White Bridge.

Waimakariri Streams and Rivers


The Porter River

The Porter River is crossed just prior to the Castle Hill Village on SH73. It runs through private property (Castle Hill Station) and permission to fish should be gained. A phone call is all that is required. The Porter can be fished both upstream and downstream of SH73.


Broken River

Access to the upper reaches can be obtained from SH73, with permission of Castle Hill Station. The lower reaches can be accessed by following the Lake Sarah / Hawdon / Marymere Road (off SH73) beyond those lakes to its end.


Winding Creek

Foot access is available from the Flock Hill Station Lodge. Anglers should ring the Lodge for details - (03) 318 8196.

Lake Grasmere

Lake Lyndon

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