Pouakai Tarns Hike

jana meerman pouakai reflective tarn hike taranaki (2)

Pouakai Tarns is one of the most well-known hikes of the Mount Taranaki region in Egmont National Park. If you do a quick Google search, you'll see incredible photos of Mount Taranaki reflected in the tarns at all hours of the day - from gorgeous sunrises to snowy days - and it makes you want to definitely not miss this spot!

We even encountered a group of tourists in jeans with bags of picnics who thought the lake was just off the road! Not quite!

The tarns are actually deceptively small - photos make it out to be a massive lake with a wonderful reflection - but it's actually quite a small little pond that, if you're lucky on a clear day, provides a cool view. We were disappointed by this, not aided by the fact that, even though it was a sunny day, Taranaki insisted on remaining well and truly hidden behind the clouds.

Thankfully, the hike itself was actually awesome - mostly boardwalked and beautiful in the sunlight when it filters through the trees!

POUAKAI TARNS HIKE DETAILS

When: year-round, but be wary of snow and ice at the top in winter months - however, this is definitely suitable to hike in wet seasons as the majority of the trail is boardwalked!

Where: Egmont National Park in Taranaki

Difficulty: intermediate

Length: 4 hours to do the 10km roundtrip from the parking lot to the tarns just past the Pouakai Hut

Directions: the hike up to the tarns starts at the end of Mangorei Road at the base of Mount Taranaki. A spacious parking lot with toilet facilities is at the trailhead; you'll walk a few minutes up the gravel driveway before entering the bush and the start of the trail.

Bathrooms: yes, at the parking lot as well as up at the Pouakai Hut

Public Transit: no

jana meerman pouakai reflective tarn hike taranaki (2)
jana meerman pouakai reflective tarn hike taranaki (2)
jana meerman pouakai reflective tarn hike taranaki (2)
jana meerman pouakai reflective tarn hike taranaki (2)
jana meerman pouakai reflective tarn hike taranaki (2)
jana meerman pouakai reflective tarn hike taranaki (2)
jana meerman pouakai reflective tarn hike taranaki (2)
jana meerman pouakai reflective tarn hike taranaki (2)
jana meerman pouakai reflective tarn hike taranaki (2)
jana meerman pouakai reflective tarn hike taranaki (2)
jana meerman pouakai reflective tarn hike taranaki (2)

Pouakai Tarns - offering a reflection of Mount Taranaki on a clear day

jana meerman pouakai reflective tarn hike taranaki (2)

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