MARCH 11, 2017

get more toughness for your dollars


Hours  & hours for 0nly $85


The Tararua Mountain Race is one of New Zealand's oldest mountain races, still going strong over 25 years later. The  Tararua Ranges are widely renowned in New Zealand for  tough mountain terrain and weather, so the race is not for the inexperienced.  Traditionally the race is held over the Southern Crossing.  From 2014 a new concept is being introduced with an alternative course being used every even year, and the traditional Southern Crossing used every odd year.  The race will always be held on the second Saturday in March.



The 2017 Tararua Mountain Race will be on the classic route. Starting at Kaitoke, over the Marchant Ridge, to Alpha Hut,then the Dress Circle, Mt Hector, down to Kime and Field Hut with a finish at Otaki Forks in the sunshine. Race date is 11 March 2017.



The Tararua Mountain Races are not for the faint-hearted, but are highly achievable with a good base of training and experience in the outdoors. For safety, first time participants are required to enter as a two-person team unless you can convince the race director you have the right experience and fitness.


The 2017 race took place on Saturday 11 March.


2017 Results (Final results which now include Alpha & Kime Splits)

Click here


Race Trust

The race is operated by a Trust set up in 2011 by the local mountain running community.  The purpose of the Trust is to support mountain running with any profits from the event going to Land Search and Rescue organisations in the Wellington Region.  The Trust has applied for charitable status.


There are six trustees on the Trust, all of whom are past or present competitors: Terry Patterson (Chair), Paul Helm, Jo Holden, Ben Clendon, Allan Stowell, Mike Sheridan.  Cat McBean is now Race Director.


The Trust is always interested in hearing your views about the race - Good and bad.  Ensure you pass on your views to the race director: tararua.race at

About us

Cat McBean has been appointed Race Director for 2017.  Cat has been involved with the race over the last 5 years at the start and finish.


Cat works in sport management - currently General Manager of Orienteering NZ - and have been involved in a number of iconic outdoor events - Mountains to Sea and The Big Coast - and has recently returned from volunteering at the 2016 Rio Olympics.



Contact Details

Email: tararua.race at


Dinae Imus handles registrations. Contact her if you have any problems or questions with your registration.

Email: dianeimus at xtra dot co dot nz


Special mention

Brent Harrison conceived and organised the first Southern Crossing race in 1990.  He organised the race for a number of years before handing over to  Lyndsay Fletcher who was race director for the later half of the race's life.



Thanks also to Mike Sheridan who has been Race Director for the last 5 events.  Mike is now stepping aside from directing but will still be involved in the event.


Terry Patterson and Allan Stowell have completed the race every year

Support volunteers

The community group behind the race is Wellington Ridge Runners. This is a virtual running club with a facebook page and email list set up to get together like-minded mountain runners.  Most of the race volunteers come from this group.


The Tararua Mountain Race has a large group of volunteers (50-60 people) that help out on race day. The volunteers consist of three groups; SAR teams deployed along the route to deal with any incidents, marshals at fixed points to check off runners, and helpers based at the start and finish areas. SAR teams are supplied by LandSAR and marshals are experienced runners and trampers from the local outdoor community. 


Marshals will offer support hot and cold drinks and jet planes to get you up the hills.

A tail end charlie will follow the last competitor.



Without the support of the local search and rescue teams the event could not take place.  They provide the communications network with AREC, a HQ coordination team and field teams that are able to deal with any incidents on the race.


SAR teams in the past have been sourced from the Wellington group, but in future it is hoped to broaden the support to both the Wairarapa and Horewhenua groups.  Any profits from the race are channelled back to these local SAR groups.

Pics on this page of the Southern Crossing 2011 are by Fraser Crichton.

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