Whanganui Bay



Bay Behaviour
New Climbs


Considered by many as the Mecca of North Island rock climbing, the "Bay" is located on the western shores of lake Taupo.  This place is a must visit on on your list of climbing areas.

bulletRoutes - 200
bulletGrades - 13 to 30
bulletCliff Heights - 7m to 50m
bulletRock Type - Rhyolite

Protection - Natural & Fixed


Guide - Whanganui Rock

tibia1.jpg (67972 bytes)


The entrance is located on SH32, 26km south of the Tihoi Trading Post or 12km north of Kuratau. Access to Whanganue Bay is through private farm land and while you can drive down it is recommended you do so in a 4WD vehicle. 

At last reports the road is is not safe and fully washed out below the old mid-way car park. We are told that not even a hummer or a tank would get up or down any more and the hike in is now added by fixed ladders!

Providing the road is open climbers must park in a newly cleared parking area by the river at the beach. To get there take the newly formed road on the left about 200 meters before the Marae and follow it down past the garden to the camping area. Climbers are no longer permitted to walk or drive past the front of the Marae.

On reaching the bay you should visit Mere (Mary), she lives in the second to last house at the southern end of the bay. To make it easy on her try to visit Mere between the hours of 10.00am-12.00pm daily.

Camping on the beachfronts that are formed by the river and lagoon is still OK however climbers are to show due consideration to any of the family who may also be there. They have first preference and we shouldn’t crowd them out. Camping in front of the existing houses is definitely not permitted and please respect their privacy by walking down on the beach. You may need to hang your food (and rubbish in the trees) as pigs visit the area occasionally.

Some of the families have set up dwellings underneath the Plateau Cliff. Although there is no immediate threat of closure to the cliff to ensure that climbers do not intrude we urge you to behave considerately when climbing above these parts of the cliff. Please keep the noise down and certainly don't use expletives.

Refer to Bay for additional information.


Check out New Climbs at the Bay

Whekenui Area

A beautiful north facing area featuring clean columns of Rhyolite. The area receives sun almost all day long so you may want to seek out one of the many shady areas and escape the heat from time to time.

In the centre of the face you will find a large towering column which is the location of one of the Bay's classic climbs called Tibia (a 3 pitch grade 16). Please do not disturb the bones at the base of the climb!

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Other Areas

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Ó Copyright Steven Riddell 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002 & 2003.