Trail use

There are a number of ways we monitor trail use; some of these are informal and rely on club members reporting on who they talked to while out riding.

However, there are a couple of more formal methods used:

  • The NPDC has an infra-red counter at Mangamahoe.  The NPDC pass the traffic information to us.  Some of the data from this counter will graphed when the data becomes reliable and shown on this page in the future.  The counter has been having some issues and the NPDC are looking at replacing it.
  • We have installed four MTB counters that work using a magnetometer on a number of the trails (they do pick up carbon bikes!) at Mangamahoe.  We are using these TRAFx trail counters operating in Bike mode.  The trails that were part of the first period of monitoring were: Kiwi Kids, Mandatory Power Play, Lawsons Loop – GDO Link and Kahore Tau.  Subsequently the counter from the Kiwi Kids track has been moved to the new Highway to Hell trail, so data from that trail’s use is now included.
  • At the beginning of February the counter on Lawson’s Loop-GDO Link was moved to the Lap It Up track and the Mandatory Power Play counter was moved up to be nearer the entrance to this trail to make it safer to retrieve the data.

Some of the results provided from the weeks of data collected from the TRAFx counters are shown here (last updated 11th March 2018):

Let’s look at the daily totals for the Lap It Up trail for February and early March:

Average/day     77
Maximum/day  228
Minimum/day       3

There are peaks for Waitangi Day, the 6th and for Sunday the 25th where there were almost 230 riders heading up to the Million $ and down trails.   Sunday’s are a popular day for riders to head out the trails to the north end of the park.


Let’s look at the daily totals for the new trail Highway To Hell for November to January:

Average 32.1
Minimum 0
Maximum 112

We see some peaks when there are events on:  the 13th November there was the third of the Monday night races that used the Track C option, that’s the peak with 112 rides/day.  We now see that the use is pretty constant with around 32 rides per day.

What does a daily count look like now?  We currently have 378 days (54 weeks) of data:

There are some clear spikes that correspond with events e.g. Manga and Bangas on the 5th March which gives the big spike of 392 bikes/day on Kiwi Kids and the 4 hour teams event giving Mandatory Power Play a count of 206 bikes/day on the 19th March.  A regular weekly cycle shows up that corresponds to the high weekend use of the park.

There was a quiet period in June through the weather and trail closures, but it picked up during July and August.  There was a quiet period lasting from the 6th September to the 14th September where only 145 bikes were recorded over 9 days, whereas there were over twice that in the two days of the 23rd and 24th September.  There are some days when no one is riding these trails but the averages per day are:

Highway to Hell Kahore Tau Kiwi Kids Lawsons Loop – GDO Link Mandatory PowerPlay
Average 25 21 18 11 25
Minimum 0 0 0 0 0
Maximum 116 90 392 70 206


We can get monthly averages.  The trend on the trails is generally upwards since June with the new Ara Hoki and Cash Flow trails attracting more riders to the northern end of the park.  The wet spring had an affect during September.  Highway to Hell maybe overtaking Mandatory PowerPlay as the popular way to ride down and out of the park.


Overall, lots of riders with heavy weekend use of the park has shown up in the past data with an average of an 80% increase in riders during October compared to September.  What days are popular during the summer?

For November to January 2018, Friday is the quietest day with an average of 16 trips/day on any one of the four trails with Sunday being the busiest with about 3 times that amount.


Between 6pm and 7pm is still the most popular time to ride at Mangamahoe.


What are the trends for last and this year:

With some more data, Lap It Up’s daily count may come down to the others and as winter comes on the estimated yearly totals may drop a little, but there seems to be over 10,000 bikes in our park over a 12 month period.