All aboard a new route

Dave Selby and John Hansen with a group of tourists during a trip to Tangowahine last week

Dargaville Rail and River have been given the go-ahead to extend their rail cart trip from Tangowahine to Waiotira and are already taking pre-bookings for the service. 

The idea for an extension has been in the pipeline since the project began but it wasn’t until December 3, 2016 that lease of the line was granted.

Since then Dave Selby and John Hansen have been working to prepare the track which included days of chainsaw work and using a digger to help clear sections along the track.

Now with the seal of approval from the New Zealand Transport Association with assistance from the Dargaville Community Development Board the seven-eight hour return trip has been given the green light to operate.

The ride features a tunnel over 600m long and 27 bridge crossings in total.

“As you go inland there’s a lot of different stuff out there to see — it’s like you’re in your own little world. There’s totally different scenery you just don’t see anywhere else like bush, native birds — the tui and wood pigeon, farmland, and a big forestry block,” said John. 

The local Kaipara business has taken 3,000 people on the carts since opening 22 months ago.

Light refreshments will be provided on the longer trip and Dave says “anyone concerned with the length of the trip can arrange to be picked up and we can bring the cart home.”

The exact start date will be announced in the coming weeks.


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