Walking the W2K with your dogs

We’ve found the best way to spend a quiet day with the dogs in Taupo is to go for a nice long walk on one of the many lakeside tracks.

By: Chris Duncan

We headed out to Kinloch with some sammies and water in the packs. The walk starts with a gentle continuous climb as you work your way around the eastern face of Whangamata Bay with wonderful views down on the village of Kinloch. Zeke and Ty bounced along happily, enjoying all the great smells in the bush and p-mail from other dogs.

Walking the dog


It takes about 45-minutes to work your way up to the beginning of the Headland Loop Track, which runs 10km around the headland with fantastic views from Whangamata Bluffs before rejoining the W2K. We decided we’d head for about halfway around the Headland Loop in the hope of getting views of the lake and the mountains of Tongariro National Park.

We went in the middle of summer so the dogs were on the lookout for any streams or creeks to drink from, but unfortunately there is no water in this area. We always carry plenty for the dogs and ourselves.

The track around the headland is easy going and because you are surrounded by bush there is an abundance of birdlife.

We took the 1.5km diversion to the Kinloch Lookout. Overlooking the lake and with unobstructed views of the mountains to the south, it is a lovely spot to sit for lunch and to give the dogs a rest.

By the time we headed back, both dogs were quite happy to just trot beside us as we’d covered about 12km. It’s a gentle downhill walk home with a swim (for the dogs) in the lake once we made it back to the car.

Two very tired dogs and humans that evening, what a great day.

The dog box:

Where: Kinloch, 21km from Taupo, or Whakaipo Bay, 12km
from Taupo.

Time: Allow all day to walk from Kinloch via Headland Loop to
Whakaipo. W2K track is 14.4km and Headland Loop is 9.7km

Off-leash areas: Dogs can be off leash.

All walkers and dogs must give way to bikes.

Dog bins: None.

What to take:

For Rex: Plenty of water.
For You: Water, food.

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