17 May 2011

Riders flock back to Heaphy Track

8:42 am on 17 May 2011

Mountain bikers are returning to the Heaphy Track in strong numbers after a 15-year hiatus.

The track, which runs from the West Coast to Golden Bay, had been closed to mountain bikers since the formation of the Kahurangi National Park in 1996.

Under a three-year trial, riders can now use it between May and the end of September.

The Department of Conservation says more than 250 have ridden the track since cyclists were allowed back this month.

Mountain Bike New Zealand spokesperson Guy Wynn-Williams, who lobbied for access, says it's possible up to 2000 people will ride it this season.

The Department of Conservation estimates the number will be about 1000.