Altitude: 713m to 1020m. Gain: 335m. Loss: 32m . Gradient: 16 deg (Moderate-hard)
Skills: - Prolonged rivers (4/6)
From Iron Gate Hut, head upstream adjacent to the river on the southern bank on unmarked tracks until a section of windfall blocks your way. Drop to the river, and cross to the island mid-flow just upstream. Follow the island up to it's upstream end, and then cross back to the southern bank. After cutting round/through the next loop in the river, the southern bank ends at bluffs above a rapid. The Oroua must be crossed here, either by wading just above the rapids, or by swimming the pools as far upstream as you can push below the bluffs (sometimes safer as it puts some distance between you and the rapids). The crossing is thigh to waist deep in normal flows, and can easily become impassable.
Once across a DOC triangle marks the start of the up-and-over track which cuts off the next bend in the river, avoiding some serious, tricky gorges. Good campspots also exist here.
The track heads 100m up the northern bank before heading up the next sidestream, which it soon crosses. From here a steep, but well cut and marked track climbs to reach the spur just above pt1037.
From just above pt 1037 the cut track cuts east off the spur, but it is also possible to continue from here up the spur on a roughly marked route to Mangahuia highpoint.