Introducing the Oparara Valley Trust
The Oparara Valley Project Trust manages the Oparara Guided Tours, and holds the sole Department of Conservation Guiding Concession for the Honeycomb Hill Caves in the Specially Protected Area in the Oparara Basin.
It is a community initiative, working together with the Department of Conservation.
The Trust has developed and enhanced the existing attractions in the Oparara to become the premium visitor attraction of the northern Buller, encouraging visitors to stay longer.
A six year $3.2 million dollar commitment from a group of enthusiastic locals saw the completion of a stunning network of world-class tracks and facilities in the Oparara Valley which were officially opened by Patron Professor David Bellamy in November 2008, on what was his third visit to the Oparara Basin.
The Oparara project came in on time and on budget, and is a tribute to the passion of the Oparara Valley Trust members and to the skills of a dedicated track gang.
This has provided increased employment opportunities, and is already benefiting not only Karamea but the whole of the Buller and the wider West Coast.
Below are copies of the text from the two panels in the shelter at the Oparara Basin carpark which list the achievements of the Oparara Valley Trust and its track gang, and acknowledgement of the many sponsors who helped fund the six year project.
The Oparara Valley Project Trust - "Using our past to secure our future"
The Oparara Valley Project Trust was formed in 2002, a community initiative aimed at up grading tracks and facilities in the Oparara.
In tandem with many stakeholders, the Trust embarked on an ambitious 3.2 million dollar project to develop and enhance the Oparara Valley to become the premium visitor attraction of the northern West Coast, opening up opportunities for sustainable eco-tourism and boosting local employment.
Protection of the environment and of the user was paramount to the development.
Six years and thousands of volunteers’ hours of planning and securing funding, together with an enthusiastic local track gang, has resulted in these impressive achievements.
- 2003 Mountain Bike/Walking Track
- 2004 Purchase of Oparara Guiding Concession
2005 National TrustPower Awards
2005 Purchase of base/workshop
- 2006 Moria Gate/Mirror Tarn Loop Track
2006 Oparara Basin Carpark
2007 Shelter and Toilets
2008 Oparara Valley Track
2008 Fenian Track Upgrade
2008 Picnic Tables and Interpretation Panels
Official Opening of new tracks and facilities, by Patron Professor David Bellamy
The Oparara Valley Trust wishes to acknowledge all those who supported the Trust’s vision of upgrading tracks and facilities in the Oparara Valley for the long-term benefit of the Karamea community.
To our major funders –thank you
To the people of Karamea and beyond –thank you for believing in the Trust’s dream, and for your ongoing support and monetary donations, as well as time, materials, information, photographs and labour.
Recognition should also be made of the total commitment and dedication of Trust members and of the Trust’s track gang, whose extraordinary passion for the Oparara has made this project possible.
We thank you all.
Oparara Valley Trust 8 November 2008
Significant Community Funding
Development West Coast
Buller District Council
West Coast Department of Conservation
West Coast Major Regional Initiative
Community Employment Group