Land a boon for recreation

Last updated 08:47 09/11/2012
bendrose station
SUPPLIED/ Kiersten McKinley
NEW LAND: Part of the former Bendrose Station, in the Ben Ohau range, has become conservation estate.

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An area on the broad western face of Ben Ohau Range is now public conservation land.

This block, formerly part of Bendrose Station, is expected to become part of Ruataniwha Conservation Park.

Bendrose Station completed the tenure review process last year, with 2333ha going back into conservation estate, and the remaining 3605ha placed into freehold.

Twizel Conservation Department area manager Rob Young said the new acquisition had created recreational opportunities for the region. "An existing walk up the Ruataniwha Peak has been extended as a circuit track and is called Greta track. This a 16-kilometre loop that takes between six to seven hours to walk, dependent upon fitness," he said.

"A 4WD track provides access to the airstrip below Flanagan Pass and is called Dorcy track. There are stunning views from this track looking into the Hopkins River and Lake Ohau delta area. The track provides good access for trampers, walkers and hunters to the Ben Ohau Range."

Mr Young said the lower Ohau faces would continue to be grazed by Bendrose Station while the rest of the public conservation land has been de-stocked, enabling native vegetation to recover.

A conservation report compiled before the tenure review process suggested it was host to a variety of rare native flora and fauna.

The New Zealand falcon makes its home on the Ben Ohau range, while alpine grasshoppers, tussock butterflies, boulder butterflies and skinks have also been identified in the area.

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- The Timaru Herald

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