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Pike29 Memorial Track opens

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Pike29 Memorial Track opens

The 11.6km dual mountain biking and walking track connects the Paparoa Track Great Walk to the Pike River valley. Photo: DOC/Owen Kilgour

The Pike29 Memorial Track officially opened on 16 February 2024. Pike River families, Ngāti Waewae, minister of regional development Shane Jones, West Coast Tasman MP Maureen Pugh, and those who worked on the track were among those present at the opening ceremony.

The 11.6km dual mountain biking and walking track, which connects the Paparoa Track Great Walk to the Pike River valley, has been created in partnership between the Department of Conservation (DOC), Ngāti Waewae, and the families of the 29 men who died as a result of the Pike River mine disaster in November 2010.

“It embodies the enduring memory the families sought for their family members lost in the Pike River Mine disaster on 19 November 2010,” said Pike River Families Group Committee chairperson Colin Smith.

“This track will ensure the memory of those family members lives on through the eyes and minds of all those who walk or bike this track forevermore.

“What a wonderful legacy that is for all of us, not only for the present generations but also for those to come so that they, like us, can reflect on the tragedy of the Pike River Mine Disaster and the lessons to be learned from it, remember those who were lost as a consequence of it and enjoy the beauty that abounds on the track and in the Pike Valley.”

Pike29 Memorial Track opens
Pike River family members after the ribbon was cut and track open. Photo: DOC

DOC Western South Island director operations Mark Davies said the Paparoa Track Great Walk has already brought social and economic benefits to local communities.

“Overnight visitors are spending money here and nearly 30 permanent and seasonal jobs have been created.

“The Pike29 Track will build on this with more opportunities for businesses such as cycle hire and shuttles.”

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