Runners on Parihaka Trail Run

Parihaka Trail Run goes the distance

Only four weeks out from the annual BDO Parihaka Trail Run Cyclone Gabrielle put paid to the event with many of the tracks being damaged.

Sport Northland, who organise many outdoor events to encourage an active community, had the April event planned but nowhere to run it, so approached Rayonier Matariki Forests to see if Whangārei's Glenbervie Forest could play host.

Carl Mansell, Event Co-ordinator for Sport Northland says the damage to the Parihaka trails made it too dangerous to host the event there and a last minute dash to find an alternative was necessary.

“Glenbervie Forest has a lot to offer and with the help of Rayonier Matariki Forests to design the three courses for a 5km, a 12km and a half marathon through a mix of pine plantations and native forest, we had a successful event.  The course layout provided some great challenges for both the beginners and elite athletes and while there were a few hard climbs up to the ridgeline, participants were rewarded at the top with some spectacular views,” explains Carl.

Over 400 people participated in the popular Northland event and one of those runners was RMF Northland’s harvest planner, Bevan Braithwaite.

Bevan signed up at the last minute, after some encouragement from the organisers, to run the 12km race and came 20th out of 144.

“Given I hadn’t done the race before and can’t exactly say I did much training, I felt pretty good afterwards and was really pleased with my achievement.  I also managed to rope in some of the logging boys from Crew 89 and we all had a great time,” says Bevan.

Sam Middlemass, Forest Manager for RMF says it was great to be able to help make the event happen.

“We too had sustained damage from the cyclone but were able to cut away windthrown trees, tidy up in time and make sure the trails were ready for action.”


Below: Bevan Braithwaite gives it his all on the trail.

Bevan Braithwaite