Camp­ing rules eased in our re­gional parks

Kapi-Mana News - - WHAT’S ON - JIM CHIPP

Re­gional park camp­ing rules are chang­ing in recog­ni­tion of grow­ing num­bers of free­dom-camp­ing tourists and New Zealan­ders hol­i­day­ing in the camp­sites.

Stays at Kaitoke and Bat­tle Hill are re­stricted to one week at a time, but many fam­i­lies like to camp there for longer.

The Dry Creek site near Hay­wards has be­come more pop­u­lar with camper­van­ners.

Welling­ton Re­gional Coun­cil plans to change the re­stric­tion to 40 days in any cal­en­dar year at the three sites.

It also plans to re­move a des­ig­nated camp­ing area from Bel­mont Re­gional Park’s Strat­ton St en­trance. The site is rarely used, but has be­come the fo­cal point of mountainbiking ac­tiv­ity in the park.

The coun­cil’s en­vi­ron­ment com­mit­tee ap­proved the changes on March 30.

Coun­cil parks man­ager Amanda Cox said the 40-day limit would not be dif­fi­cult to po­lice be­cause the ranger knew most of the reg­u­lars.

‘‘Most of the peo­ple who come are from the lo­cal area,’’ she said.

The limit was aimed at peo­ple who set up long-term camp­sites, stay­ing for a week.

The rules would al­low the grass to be bet­ter pro­tected.

Boyet La­billes was re­lax­ing at his Kaitoke camp­site on Box­ing Day.

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