Track nears completion

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THE creation of a new walking track at Omaui is nearing com› pletion, but volunteers are needed to help lay gravel along the track before it can be officially opened to the public.
‘‘You need good arms, good legs and a good back,’’ Omaui Track Trust chairman Lloyd Esler said.
‘‘We don’t have a date for an official opening yet, but once gravelling is done and signage is in place we can officially open.’’
The trust was formed four years ago to plan and raise the necessary funds to create the 2.4km track within the Department of Con› servation (Doc) Omaui Reserve.
It can be accessed from the existing viewpoint track on the Omaui Reserve and took in large rata and manuka trees — some with a girth of 1.5m, interesting rock formations, an abundance of bird› life including parakeets and a view of Foveaux Strait, Bluff and the Flat Hill Wind Farm, making it ideal for families, runners and bird watchers, Mr Esler said.
With grants from sponsors including the ILT Foundation and the Community Trust of Southland, $70,000 was raised for project costs including track formation, equip› ment, the hire of a helicopter to drop gravel at the site, and signage, he said.
Gravel will be spread along the track on Saturday from 10am, and the call was going out for volunteers interested in helping out.
Volunteers needed to bring plenty of food and drink, a shovel or spade, suitable footwear and a couple of strong buckets and high› vis vests if possible, Mr Esler said.
Í To register as a volunteer phone Lloyd Esler, 03 213 0404, or email esler@southnet.co.nz.

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