The Red Rocks trail offers stunning views of Wellington Harbour, and if it’s a clear day the South Island is also visible. Start off at the car park at Wellington wind turbine. The road which heads to Hawkins Hill is private to vehicles but open to cyclists. There are two options to get to the Red Rocks Trail.

  • Take the Car Parts and Barking Emu trails
  • Ride on the road until just before Hawkins Hill and turn left – the green dot on the map

If you’re pressed for time I’d recommend taking the road option. Car Parts Ext and Barking Emu are relatively slow and twisty trails, it’s not until you hit Red Rocks that things start to open up and you can get some speed up.

red rocks trail map

It’s an intermediate grade trail and starts off quite rocky, many. I find picking a line through the opening sections sometimes challenging since many of the rocks are loose. The surface then changes to become mainly hardpack until just before the end. The final section becomes quite twisty and slow and requires more technical ability. When the weather is good, it’s a trail that I take the time to stop and appreciate the stunning views of the harbour and the mountains, sometimes being on a bike is not just about speed and adrenaline, it’s about appreciating the places it can take me. Much of the trail has a fast flow to it which is why I love riding it.

The trail finishes on the South Coast. It’s only accessible by 4WD (don’t try in anything else, you’ll get nowhere) and is open every day except Sunday. Stick to the path the 4WD’s use – it easy enough to ride on, but be aware of vehicles approaching. There are often plenty of people walking on the beach. It doesn’t take long before you’re back at Owhiro Bay and appreciating the view.

Wellington Harbour

wellington harbour


santa cruz nomad red rocks


red rocks


red rocks


wellington harbour south coast


santa cruz nomad wellington south coast

Thank you for reading – Happy Trails!



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