The Northbrook Wetlands was once the site of early European industry including; flax mills, a brewery, fellmongery and a tannery. In recent years restoration of this area has created an extensive wildlife and recreation reserve. As well as the remnants of the past, in the native plantings there is space for birds to breed, tracks to wander and for kids to ride their bikes along.
30 minutes return.
A native park of plant communities established from Canterbury wildplants; lowland podocarp, swamp beech forest, churn tussock, grassland and coastal. Explore the many tracks in the park that wind through bushy dells and open info secluded alcoves or bigger grassy spaces. Great for family walks and picnics.
30 minutes return.
This walking track follows alongside the Ashley River, commencing by the Ashley River Bridge Picnic Area, Inland Scenic Route 72. Follow the winding track to the railway bridge and return along the stop bank or track. The braided Ashley River is home to the wrybill and the river bed is a significant breeding ground for this endangered bird.
20 minutes return.
The Ashley Rakahuri Regional Park is a new recreational area developed by Environment Canterbury by the Ashley River, just north of Rangiora. The first stage has been recently completed (October 2012) and consists of the Rakahuri Trail & Rakahuri MTB Park (mountain biking tracks and single tracks in a forest area) - all short distances and suitable for introducing children to mountain biking. The North Canterbury Cycling Club have developed the Rakahuri MTB Park, which is a great area of single tracks off the Rakahuri Trail. Car parking and new picnic areas have been established along the trail. This area can be combined with further rides on to Waikuku Beach, Tuhaitara Coastal Park and Pegasus.
The Ashley-Rakahuri Rivercare Group is a community group formed to assist with management of the lower reaches of the Ashley River. Its main aims are to protect birds and their habitat in the riverbed, to monitor breeding success, and to promote these activities to the wider public.