People behind the Trails...

Be Set Free

Trail governance team

Motu Trails is led by a governance team, representing Opotiki District Council, Activate Tairawhiti, DOC, Whakatohea Maori Trust Board, and Motu Trails Charitable Trust.

Regular maintenance on the Dunes Trail, Motu Road Trail and Pakihi Track is by Councils and DOC.

Whakatane District Council also supports Motu Trails.

Our vision is that Motu Trails is a gateway to superb experiences across the Opotiki, Tairawhiti Gisborne and Whakatane regions.

As well as ensuring the existing trails offer a superb experience, we want to extend trail and safe riding connections both between Gisborne-Opotiki, and between Opotiki-Whakatane.


Motu Trails Charitable Trust

Motu Trails Charitable Trust is the governance and promotional hub of Motu Trails. We produce brochures, run this web site and the Motu Trails Facebook and Instagram pages, advertise the trails, support media visits, attend shows like Fieldays, run the Motu Trails official partner programme, do a lot of volunteer trail work, and more.

We work with the other stakeholders, including The New Zealand Cycle Trail team, to present Motu Trails as a top-quality experience.

Motu Trails Charitable Trust’s trustees are: Kathy Sheldrake (Chair), Bruce Hall, Amy Spence, and Ian Kirkpatrick, all of Gisborne; Paul Cornwall of Motu; and Tony Palmer and Kieran Hickey of Opotiki.

Jim Robinson is the trust’s executive officer and will usually be your first point of contact.

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Motu Trails governance team: l-r Jim Robinson, Kathy Sheldrake (Chairperson), Kieran Hickey, Tony Palmer, Bruce Hall (all of Motu Trails Charitable Trust). Adam Hughes (Activate Tairawhiti), Vince Copeland (DOC), Garry Page (Opotiki District Council), Nikki Slade Robinson (Motu Trails Charitable Trust. Absent trustees: Steferl Gordon, Amy Spence.

Sponsors and supporters

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Garth and Judy Barfoot, premier sponsors of Motu Trails

Garth Barfoot and Judy Barfoot are Premier Sponsors of Motu Trails. In mid-2018, Garth made a major donation towards our on-trail work. In late-2018, we are in the process of planning to use Garth's support on several major projects — superb.

Motu Trails Charitable Trust is supported by silver sponsors OPAC and Horizon Energy Group. We welcome any other organisations that may wish to support us, please contact us if you’d like to talk about this.

The trust’s work is supported by community trusts and other organisations. Recently, we are grateful to have received support from The Southern Trust, The Lion Foundation, Ground Effect, and Trail Fund NZ.

New Zealand Post has supported us with free Community Post envelopes.

We are hugely appreciative of all support. Without it, Motu Trails definitely wouldn't be what it is.


Make a donation

We welcome individual donations. If you wish to make a donation, we will put that support to good use — any amount helps.

To donate, visit Givealittle and search Motu Trails. Or make a donation directly into our bank account 06-0637-0259896-00. Or contact us for details, for instance we could suggest a special project for you to donate towards.

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On the Pakihi Track and Dunes Trail, volunteer support is a key part of keeping the trails open. Volunteers help to keep the trail clear and work on enhancements.

Four kilometres of Whakaumu Track have been opened entirely with volunteer labour. Again, contact us to know more.


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Be Set Free