Auckland/Waikato Reel Life November 2019
- Richie Cosgrove
Update on the Whakapapa Intake Road access
New Zealand Walking Access Commission has been working diligently on the Whakapapa Intake Road access but have not made any progress to date.
We know the crown has a right of way in gross over the road and that the right of way was included in the Ngati Tuwharetoa settle agreement.
Right: Right: Adam Daniel fishing the Whakapapa Intake Road.
Nothing but the owner listed on the title of the property has changed in this situation so there should be driving access to the Whakapapa Intake Road.
The holdup in terms of opening the gate is with Department of Conservation who still have not responded to enquiries from the Walking Access Commission.
Fish & Game staff have also left messages with the DOC Taupo office for clarity and are awaiting a response.
Fish & Game would like to make a correction to our last update, the Walking Access Commission informed us they have not yet engaged with the new owners of the Whakapapa Intake Road.
However, the easement is clearly listed in the settlement documents and the sign on the gate does not reflect the easement on the property title.
Unfortunately, there is no penalty for blocking public access.
Although you can be charged for trespassing on private land there is currently no way to punish landowners who block legal public access.
In one recent example it took over a year to get a landowner to remove a no trespassing sign from a paper road that led to a popular fly fishing river in the Waikato Region.
To make matters worse you can be charged for destroying property if you cut a lock or destroy a no trespassing sign even if they are being used to block public access.
We hope that bringing some light to this obstruction of public access may prompt the Government to level the playing field in terms giving equal weight to penalties for blocking access and trespassing.
Trout Habitat map
Fish and game staff are updating the Waikato Regional trout habitat map.
The map is used to show where trout are located but it is unfortunately incomplete, so staff are slowly updating it.
You can view the map on the Waikato Regional Councils Water Classification mapping page. If you see a stream that has trout in it that is not listed let us know.
Adam Daniel, Auckland/Waikato Fish & Game Officer.