LTFT Partial Re-opening of forest


The Trust and Tupu Angitu are pleased to advise that from Saturday, 1 April 2023 the northern half of Lake Taupō Forest will re-open for owner access. This access will be available on the normal winter access hours – being weekdays from 4pm to 8pm, and on weekends from 7am to 8pm.

While Cyclone Gabrielle caused major damage in Lake Taupō Forest, the vast majority of this damage is confined to the southern half of the forest. We have been working with NZFM to find a way to allow owners into the less damaged parts of the forest. By using concrete barriers and gates, we have managed to isolate the southern area from the north – meaning we can offer owners the ability to access the lands north of Mission Bay Road.

That said, we advise that there is some damage to forests in the north, and while the major roads have all been cleared of fallen trees, there are likely to be trees blocking some of the minor roads and tracks. We also advise that standing trees may have been compromised by the cyclone and may be more likely to fall than had previously been the case.

With these heightened risks in mind, we are requiring everyone who wants to access the forest to first renew their access fob key, at which time you will be asked to read and sign that you have understood and accept the new risks and the new access conditions we require – as listed below.

The conditions of owner access are:

  • Permit holders are not to enter wind damaged stands. Please refer to the map HERE for where those areas are known to be.
  • Do not park near wind damaged trees or on roads adjacent to wind damaged trees.
  • Be aware that some weekend work, including trucking, may still be taking place in and around the forest.
  • If you come across a road blocked by fallen trees, DO NOT attempt to clear roads using a chainsaw as the trees may be under tension and cause injury. Instead – note the road name, approximate location, and report it to NZFM (07 386 8758 or

The situation in the forest remains quite fluid as we develop our response and ramp up our salvage work, and these could potentially mean we need to change the owner access arrangements over upcoming months. In addition to our website and Facebook page, we would like to be able to communicate with owners more directly on these matters. To assist in this you will be asked when you call in to update your fob key to also update your phone number and email address.

From Wednesday, 29 March 2023, owners will be able to visit the NZFM office in Turangi or the Tūwharetoa Māori Trust Board office in Taupō to update their fob keys and confirm their agreement to the above conditions of entry. You will also be provided with a map clarifying which areas of Lake Taupō Forest are available for owner access.

The Kiko Road firewood yard will also be re-opened for owners from 1 April 2023.

Noho ora mai

Binky Ellis

Chairman, Lake Taupō Forest Trust