The challenging and scenic Waitawheta/Taieri Road track southwest of Waihi has been closed earlier than expected, according to the NZFWDA. Says president Tony Burgess, "This is unfortunate, especially given that we know clubs had trips into that area planned, but we are facing legal action due to silt run-off into the streams and if we do not close the track there is a real possibility the we will lose it forever." He said the early closure followed complaints from locals. "The gates are now locked and won't be opened until we are able to come to a new agreement with council. We tried to keep it open for easter but it was not possible."
Mr Burgess has asked off-roaders to respect the closure. "It may be possible to get the track opened again," he said. "If any one goes in and pulls out the gate there is a very real possibility that we will lose it forever."