Explore the Glentui Mt Richardson area with an easy walk or choose a moderately steep climb for sweeping views of the Puketeraki Range and Lees Valley.
Only 50 minutes west of Christchurch - explore the natural environment of foothills of the Waimakariri district.
Glentui is a very popular recreational area that offers visitors a variety of track options from easy walks through the native bush, to moderately steep climbing to the Mt Richardson summit where there are sweeping views of the Puketeraki Range and Lees Valley. Mountain biking is permitted on the Blowhard Track only. Horse riders also use the Blowhard Track - cyclists take care and watch for other track users. Lighting of fires is prohibited during periods of extreme fire risk, and some areas or tracks may be closed.
Access for all walks, except the Blowhard Track, is from the Glentui picnic area. This is located about 5 km east of the Ashley Gorge Bridge turn left onto Glentui Bush Road, off the Oxford to Loburn Road. This winding gravel road emerges at the picnic area after about 2.5 km.
This track is suitable for family groups. It is signposted from the Glentui picnic area, this easy walk leads to a lookout providing an impressive view of a beautiful waterfall on the Glentui River.
Time: 30 minutes return (350 m)
From the Glentui picnic area this track descends to the Glentui River then climbs a ridge on the other side. It links first with the Bypass Track, then the Richardson Track before returning to the picnic area. This track is suitable for reasonably fit people of all ages.
Time: 1 hour return (2km)
Starting at the Glentui Picnic area, this moderate to steep track climbs first through tawhai forest and then through tussock grasslands and Dracophyllum scrub on the upper slopes of Mt Richardson (1047 metres). A good track for people with moderate fitness. Note: Mountainbikes are not permitted on this track.
Time: 2-4 hours one way
Richardson and Blowhard tracks are linked by a bypass track which starts near the mid-point of the Blowhard Track. It follows a ridge down the eastern side of the Glentui River catchment, to emerge on the Glentui Nature Trail. The round trip from the Glentui Picnic Area via the Richardson, Blowhard, and Bypass tracks is a 4-6 hour walk. Mountain bikes are not permitted on this track. (See Infomap 260 Sheet L34).
Time: 1-2 hours one way (downhill)
Access: Glentui Ashley Gorge Road crosses Washpool Stream to become Birch Hill Road. After 1 km, turn left onto Maori Reserve Road and follow for 3.5 kms to the track head near the Boy's Brigade Camp.
It takes 3-4 hours to ascend to the summit of Mt Richardson (1047 metres). The lower portion climbs a wind-swept ridge through tall open forest and emerges through stunted tawhai onto open grasslands. Skeleton tree trunks along the top ridge are a legacy of wildfire which swept up the Lees Valley. About 500 metres before Mt Richardson peak on the Blowhard Track, another track descends for 2 hours to access the Ashley River in the Lees Valley. Mountain bikes may be used on the Blowhard Track. Bikers please take care when passing other forest users on the track.
Time: 3-4 hours one way