Recently I was a guest of HeliBike Rotorua on their 'fly-in ride-out’ tour of Whirinaki Forest and Moerangi Track.
It was my first time “HeliBiking”.
The scenery was stunning as we traversed the very easy and well-formed DOC tracks underneath the majestic canopy of millennium aged podocarp giants, and dramatic valleys and escarpments.
I forget how many times I stopped to take photos and videos of the remarkable views and scenery along the way, and listen to raucous cacophony of birdsong unique to this ecological jewell. I often competitively race mountain bike, however the pleasure in riding along in such a relaxed manner made me really appreciate the terrific opportunity to “get back to nature”.
I thoroughly recommend a HeliBike Rotorua adventure as a “MUST DO”
Outstanding experience and super nice people!
Everyone involved in our experience was outstanding, from David (who set up our reservation), to the pilot, to the driver who picked us up on the other end. All were incredibly nice guys. Our pilot started by asking us, "How keen are you?" and we let him know that we were very keen to ride some solid miles, so he took us out as far as he could. Even on our rainy day, the view of the misty trees was gorgeous and the small spot where he put us down was incredible. Best of all, we didn't see a single person on the trail or at any of the huts all day. Absolutely beautiful solitude on some great trails! I should add that the driver who picked us up at the end (Tony) went above and beyond. He provided us with a cold beverage at the trail's end and when we asked him if we could stop somewhere to wash off our bikes before loading them back into our rental car, he stopped at a water hose near the heliport and jist washed them off for us. Very nice guy. I can't say enough good things about our experience.
Well I can now say I have achieved one of my greatest bucket list adventures. Many thanks to HeliBike Rotorua for fulfilling a great dream of a brilliant mountain bike adventure. To be dropped in the NZ wilderness and work our way out on an old hunters trail was truly awesome. We experienced hard inspirational riding in a landscape from a movie set. Each bend in the track opened up another adventure. We will be back. An adventure that will stay with me for life
"I have had the good fortune and privilege to ride bikes - on and off road - all over the world - South Africa, Australia, France, Italy, Spain, U.K. .... and beyond. In all of those adventures I have rarely come across as good a trip as the one we enjoyed from Heli-bike Rotorua. It was simply outstanding and a bit of once in a lifetime experience!
The arrangements for the one day excursion were straightforward. The helicopter flight into the Whirinaki unforgettable (for the right reasons!) and the trail riding and native bush simply superb. Although I am from the UK I have spent a lot of time in NZ and out on the trails here - and this is one of the best areas of bush I have ever seen.
David arranged some local riders to join us which was hugely appreciated especially by the relatively inexperienced members of our small group. Overall, this definitely gets 5 stars - just do it!"
'Whirinaki is a very unique place and we are very lucky to be able to ride there. The incredible helicopter ride just tops it off.
I've ridden many places around the world and this is one of the most memorable - and it is in our back yard!’
Awesome day trip to the kiwi native bush, nice getting heli’d in and a great ride back out!
GT Factory racing rider
"An exhilarating helicopter ride into the Whirinaki forest. Followed by a great ride through the most amazing native forest. Take your time, look around. It's one of the best experiences you will have in New Zealand."
We started planning our trip to New Zealand in January 2017, found Heli-bike Rotorua and knew this was a bucket-list adventure that we couldn't pass up. The week we were coming up on our epic adventure we checked the weather and saw that there was going to be a huge storm that day and David had no problem moving our tour back one day to make sure we were still able to go. We arrive in Rotorua and I couldn't even sleep the night before I was so excited (not recommended - this takes a lot of energy!) They also offer the option of getting dropped the evening before you ride to sleep in one of the huts on Mt. Moerangi which I would definitely do next time once I saw how remote and serene that option would have been. The morning of our ride, David picked us up, took us to a great breakfast spot and then we made our way up the mountain. Got a great history lesson about the forests we were driving through on the way up and the guys were great conversationalists. Got to the mountain, loaded up our bikes on the helicopter and off we went to the top of Mt. Moerangi. Despite the pilot refusing to hum Highway to the Danger Zone to us, the Heli Ride was incredible - views and access to the vast expansive forest that you'd never get otherwise. I was amazed. We get to the top of the mountain and it's time to ride the pristine Singletrack of Mt Moerangi. The access road was closed so we were literally the only two riders on the trail that day. I've never seen singletrack or forest like that in my life and I knew it was a privilege not many get in their mountain biker lives. The trail was challenging but rewarding and it felt like you could attack it at any experience level if you wanted. If you're not an advanced rider I would simply talk to David and he'll make sure you end up on a route, and distance that you'll be comfortable with. At the end of our ride I was smiling ear to ear. David greeted us with our favorite adult beverage, and off we went back into town - with a quick pit stop to a hot spring to relax our muscles on the way back while we enjoyed an epic sunset. This was one of the top 5 days in my life, if not the best - and I mean it. If you're thinking about doing this tour - there is no question that you should!!
Fabulous trip, highly recommended for an awesome mountain biking adventure. Thks to Helibike Rotorua and pilot, Tim for an exciting ride into the wilderness and dropping our stuff at the hut for the overnight stay. The stopover was definitely the best way to enjoy the Moerangi!!
Beautiful bike adventure with some amazing scenery, a great experience that won’t be forgotten
GT Factory racing rider
Whirinaki forest is one of my most favourite places to ride. I have been countless times but I never get sick of it. The forest is absolutely stunning with it's vast biodiversity from tiny ground cover to giant podocarps to make the perfect home for Whio (Blue Ducks), Kaka and Robin. The riding is always exciting and guaranteed rewarding. The track offers fun flowing downhill sections, climbs that vary from gentle to honest and rolling terrain along the crystal clear rivers. Anyone who is into the nature will love this adventure.
Myself and my biking partner tracked down Dave and HeliBike Rotorua. We were greeted by Claudine who gave us ten star service. We were shuttled to a brilliant chopper and dropped at a remote hut for a once in a lifetime experience. We are fit riders but we did find it tough in parts. We will never forget our forest adventure. So much thanks to Dave Ross Claudine and Tony. We truly experienced top class NZ hospitality and adventure.
Great adventure in to the jungle in the middle of nowhere, nothing like I have ever seen in Europe
Team Manager GT Factory Racing
Amazing day out to middle of nowhere
What a brilliant way to start an adventure ride. Had to wait out the weather yesterday but we were so lucky to fly into Rogers Hut today to start the Moerangi ride. The team were super helpful and kept us informed throughout whilst we waited to get a fly day.
They met us at the end and had a beer waiting. The Moerangi ride is a must do for anyone wanting to be out in the middle of nowhere in amazing bush. Don't be fooled by the distance. We did 22km from Roger's hut and it took some energy. You need to be fit.
The experience to helicopter in just adds to an excellent day out. Operators very professional We had an awesome time. We are now looking at planning our next adventure with Helibike Rotorua.