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Gorge River Airstrip

The Gorge River Airstrip, located in remote New Zealand, serves as a vital transportation link for the local community. Surrounded by breathtaking natural beauty, this small airstrip provides essential access for residents and visitors alike to this otherwise inaccessible region.


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Quick Informations and Statistics

How to Get to Gorge River Airstrip

To get to Gorge River Airstrip in New Zealand, follow these simple steps. First, book a flight to either Hokitika or Haast airports, as they are the nearest airports to Gorge River. From Hokitika, you can reach the airstrip by driving south along State Highway 6 for about 4.5 hours. Alternatively, from Haast, drive north along State Highway 6 for approximately 3.5 hours to reach the airstrip.

Once you arrive at the airstrip, you will note that it serves as a private airstrip for Gorge River Homestead. If you intend to fly in, it’s crucial to seek permission from the owners beforehand. This is essential to ensure they are aware of your arrival and can provide any necessary instructions or assistance.

It’s important to be well-prepared for this journey due to the remoteness of Gorge River. The road leading to the airstrip can be challenging, particularly during adverse weather conditions. It’s advisable to use a four-wheel-drive vehicle, and it is crucial to check for road conditions and weather updates before setting off.

In conclusion, to reach Gorge River Airstrip in New Zealand, book a flight to either Hokitika or Haast airports, then drive along State Highway 6 towards the airstrip. Seek permission from Gorge River Homestead owners before flying in, and be extra cautious due to the remote location and challenging road conditions.


Transportation Options

When it comes to transportation options near Gorge River Airstrip in New Zealand, there are a few alternatives to consider. As an isolated and remote location, it is important to plan ahead for accessing Gorge River Airstrip.

1. Helicopter Flights: Due to the challenging terrain and limited access, helicopter flights are a popular choice for reaching Gorge River Airstrip. Hiring a helicopter offers a convenient and efficient way to travel to and from this remote location. There are several helicopter charter companies that operate in New Zealand, providing access to Gorge River Airstrip and other isolated destinations.

2. Boat Transportation: While Gorge River Airstrip is not directly reachable by boat, the nearby West Coast of New Zealand offers picturesque waterways that can be utilized to travel to nearby areas. If you are planning to access Gorge River Airstrip by boat, it is advisable to arrange a drop-off at a nearby accessible point and then continue your journey by helicopter.

3. Private Vehicles: If you prefer a self-driven option, you may consider renting a 4WD vehicle. However, it is important to note that Gorge River Airstrip is located in a remote area with challenging and unsealed roads, making it suitable only for experienced off-road drivers. Prior research and preparation are essential, and it is recommended to check road conditions and weather forecasts beforehand.

4. Walking/Hiking: For the adventurous souls, hiking offers an exciting alternative to reach Gorge River Airstrip. There are various hiking trails in the area, including the famous New Zealand Great Walks, such as the Heaphy Track. Keep in mind that hiking to Gorge River Airstrip requires proper planning, a high fitness level, and the necessary equipment for remote and multi-day hiking.

It is crucial to consider that Gorge River Airstrip is situated in a remote and rugged environment, and access can be challenging. It is recommended to consult with local aviation companies, transportation providers, or tour operators to properly plan your journey and ensure a safe and convenient travel experience to and from Gorge River Airstrip.

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Car Parking

Gorge River Airstrip, located in New Zealand, provides convenient car parking options for visitors. Situated in a picturesque location, here are the car parking areas available:

1. Main Car Park: Positioned near the entrance of Gorge River Airstrip, the main car park offers ample space for vehicles. This designated parking area ensures easy access to the airstrip while providing a safe and secure place to leave your car.

2. Overflow Car Park: In the event that the main car park gets full, an overflow car park is available nearby. Equally accessible and well-maintained, this additional parking area ensures that all visitors have a place to park their vehicles comfortably.

3. Disabled Parking: Gorge River Airstrip prioritizes accessibility by offering dedicated parking spaces for disabled visitors. These designated spots are conveniently located near the entrance, providing easy access to the airstrip for individuals with disabilities or limited mobility.

4. Bicycle Parking: Encouraging environmentally friendly transportation, Gorge River Airstrip also provides bicycle parking facilities. Visitors can securely park their bicycles before accessing the airstrip, promoting sustainable transportation and a healthier lifestyle.

Note: As parking availability can vary based on demand, it is advisable to arrive early and ensure a parking spot at Gorge River Airstrip. Additionally, it is important to follow any parking regulations or instructions provided by the airport authorities to maintain a safe and organized parking environment.


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Terminals

Gorge River Airstrip is a small, remote airstrip located in the stunning wilderness of New Zealand. Nestled in the picturesque Gorge River Valley, this airstrip is primarily used for accessing the remote Gorge River Station and its surrounding areas. While the airstrip itself is unsealed and only suitable for small aircraft, its breathtaking surroundings and serene atmosphere make it a popular destination for adventurers, nature lovers, and those seeking an unparalleled escape from the hustle and bustle of city life.

At Gorge River Airstrip, visitors will find minimal infrastructure, with only basic facilities available. The remote location of the airstrip means there are no terminal buildings or modern amenities commonly found in larger airports. However, its rustic charm and untouched beauty more than make up for this lack of modern conveniences. The peacefulness and tranquility of the surrounding valley, along with its untouched natural landscapes, provide visitors with an authentic and immersive experience in the heart of New Zealand’s wild nature.

Due to its limited size and remote location, Gorge River Airstrip is primarily utilized by private pilots and aviation enthusiasts. The airstrip serves as a gateway to the vast wilderness of the surrounding area, offering opportunities for hiking, camping, fishing, and exploring the stunning landscapes of New Zealand. Visitors should note that arranging private transportation or accommodation is necessary when planning a visit to the Gorge River Airstrip, as there are no commercial services available on-site.

Overall, Gorge River Airstrip is a hidden gem in the heart of New Zealand, offering a unique and unforgettable experience for those seeking an off-the-beaten-path adventure. With its unspoiled natural beauty, remote location, and the opportunity to immerse oneself in the wilderness, this stunning airstrip provides an extraordinary gateway to the extraordinary landscapes of New Zealand.


Operating Airlines

There are no regular commercial airlines operating at Gorge River Airstrip in New Zealand. The airstrip is located on a remote, privately-owned property and is mainly used for private flights and charters.

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Security Protocols

Gorge River Airstrip, located in the pristine wilderness of New Zealand, follows strict security protocols to ensure the safety and well-being of its visitors. This remote airstrip, nestled in the breathtaking landscape of South Westland, is committed to maintaining a secure environment while providing travelers with a unique aviation experience.

To access the Gorge River Airstrip, visitors are required to follow the designated procedures and guidelines. Before arrival, individuals must obtain the necessary permits and make prior arrangements to ensure a smooth entry. These measures not only guarantee that the airstrip’s infrastructure is well-maintained, but also prevent unauthorized access and potential disruptions.

At Gorge River Airstrip, visitors can expect a comprehensive security system that encompasses various layers of protection. The surrounding area is closely monitored to discourage any unauthorized activities and maintain a safe environment. Additionally, the airstrip adheres to aviation safety guidelines to ensure the well-being of passengers and crew.

With its commitment to security, Gorge River Airstrip aims to provide a tranquil and secure environment for travelers seeking an unforgettable experience amidst New Zealand’s stunning wilderness. Whether arriving by private aircraft or helicopter, visitors can rest assured knowing that every precaution is taken to ensure their safety while embracing the beauty of this remote and breathtaking destination.


Traveler’s Assistance

Gorge River Airstrip, located in the picturesque wilderness of New Zealand, is an essential traveler’s assistance for those seeking to explore the country’s remote and rugged landscapes. This small, yet crucial airstrip provides a lifeline for adventurers and tourists seeking access to the untouched beauty of the surrounding region. Nestled amid the majestic Southern Alps, it serves as a gateway to the pristine Gorge River valley and its breath-taking surroundings.

The Gorge River Airstrip offers a convenient arrival and departure point for outdoor enthusiasts looking to undertake thrilling outdoor activities, such as hiking, mountaineering, and wilderness exploration. Due to its remote location, accessibility to this area can be challenging, making the airstrip an invaluable hub for travelers. Facilities at the airstrip are minimalistic, mainly comprising a simple runway and basic amenities. However, its significance lies in connecting visitors to the captivating landscapes, allowing them to embark on unforgettable adventures in an unspoiled natural paradise.

Travelers availing of the Gorge River Airstrip’s services can expect a truly immersive experience in the heart of nature. From here, they can embark on captivating treks, encounter diverse wildlife, and witness awe-inspiring vistas that only the wild landscapes of New Zealand can offer. This valuable traveler’s assistance acts as a vital link between tourists and the untouched beauty of this pristine wilderness, allowing them to explore and engage with a slice of New Zealand that remains largely untouched by modern development.

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Shops and Restaurants

Gorge River Airstrip, located in the pristine wilderness of New Zealand, offers visitors a unique experience surrounded by breathtaking natural landscapes. While this remote destination may be known primarily for its scenic beauty and outdoor activities, it also boasts a few charming shops and dining options that cater to adventurers and local residents alike.

Visitors to Gorge River Airstrip will find a well-stocked general store that caters to essential needs. This store offers a range of groceries, including fresh produce, snacks, and beverages, perfect for restocking supplies before embarking on an outdoor adventure or simply enjoying a quiet getaway. The friendly staff are always ready to provide local tips and recommendations to enhance your stay.

For those in search of a convenient dining option, Gorge River Airstrip features a cozy café that serves delicious meals and refreshing beverages. Whether you’re craving a hearty breakfast before setting off on a hiking expedition or a warm cup of coffee to rejuvenate after a day of exploring, this café has you covered. The menu features a variety of satisfying options, including sandwiches, pastries, and salads, carefully prepared using fresh, local ingredients.

Additionally, Gorge River Airstrip is home to a quaint gift shop, offering an assortment of unique souvenirs and locally crafted goods. From handcrafted jewelry to traditional Maori artifacts, this shop is a treasure trove of cultural finds, perfect for commemorating your trip or finding a meaningful gift for loved ones back home.

While Gorge River Airstrip’s shopping and dining options may not be as extensive as urban areas, they provide a thoughtful selection to cater to the needs of those seeking respite in the splendor of nature. Whether you’re stopping over for a few supplies or looking to indulge in delightful cuisine, these establishments add a touch of convenience and charm to your wilderness adventure.


Prayer Rooms and Worship Areas

Gorge River Airstrip is a remote location in the beautiful country of New Zealand where prayer rooms and worship areas cater to the spiritual needs of its visitors. Situated in the southwestern part of the South Island, Gorge River Airstrip provides a serene and tranquil environment for those seeking a place for introspection and prayer.

Within this enchanting destination, visitors will find various prayer rooms and worship areas that can serve as sanctuaries for individuals of diverse faiths. These spaces are designed to promote inner peace and encourage spiritual connection amidst the stunning natural landscapes of New Zealand.

One notable prayer facility in Gorge River Airstrip is the Tranquility Chapel. Nestled amidst lush greenery, this tranquil chapel provides visitors with a serene space for meditation and prayer. The chapel’s architecture is inspired by traditional New Zealand design elements, fostering a sense of harmony with the surrounding nature. Inside, one will find meticulously crafted prayer mats and seating arrangements that allow devotees to engage in reflective practices.

Another significant worship area within Gorge River Airstrip is the Sacred Grove. This sacred location is a secluded spot embraced by ancient trees and bathed in gentle sunlight, creating an ambiance of spiritual serenity. The Sacred Grove welcomes visitors from various religious backgrounds who seek solace and connection with the divine. Here, individuals can partake in rituals, offer prayers, or simply find solace in the encompassing tranquility.

Lastly, the Hananui Prayer Circle is a special outdoor area within Gorge River Airstrip designated for communal prayer and peaceful gatherings. With a panoramic view of the majestic Southern Alps and the peaceful waters of the river nearby, this prayer circle creates an awe-inspiring atmosphere for collective worship. The Hananui Prayer Circle embraces the principles of inclusivity and shares a message of unity, inviting visitors from all walks of life to come together and seek spiritual solace.

In conclusion, Gorge River Airstrip in New Zealand provides a range of prayer rooms and worship areas to cater to the spiritual needs of those visiting this remote location. Whether it be the Tranquility Chapel, the Sacred Grove, or the Hananui Prayer Circle, these spaces offer solace, reflection, and unity against the backdrop of this stunning natural environment.


WiFi and Workspace Facilities

Gorge River Airstrip, located in New Zealand, offers a range of amenities to ensure a comfortable and productive stay for travelers in need of WiFi and workspace facilities.

For those who require a reliable internet connection, Gorge River Airstrip provides WiFi access throughout the premises. Whether you need to stay connected to your business, catch up on emails, or simply surf the web, you can enjoy a seamless browsing experience from the moment you arrive. The high-speed internet ensures fast and efficient connectivity, allowing you to complete your work tasks or stay connected with friends and family effortlessly.

In addition to WiFi, Gorge River Airstrip also offers dedicated workspace facilities to cater to the needs of both business travelers and digital nomads. The workspace area is equipped with comfortable seating arrangements, suitable lighting, and a peaceful environment to promote concentration and productivity. Whether you need to hold meetings, brainstorm ideas, or work independently, you can find a suitable spot to tackle your tasks efficiently.

The ambiance of Gorge River Airstrip’s workspace facilities is designed to create a comfortable and professional environment. The surroundings exude a serene atmosphere, allowing you to focus on your work without any distractions. The workspace is also well-maintained, ensuring a clean and organized setting conducive to productivity.

Additionally, Gorge River Airstrip understands the importance of providing convenient amenities for individuals requiring a versatile working environment. With power outlets readily available, you can easily charge your electronic devices and ensure uninterrupted work sessions. The availability of power outlets eliminates any concerns regarding battery life and further enhances the convenience offered by the workspace facilities.

Whether you are traveling for business or pleasure, Gorge River Airstrip’s WiFi and workspace facilities are guaranteed to meet your needs. Stay connected, complete your work tasks with ease, and enjoy a productive stay in this idyllic location.

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Accomodation Options Nearby Gorge River Airstrip

Gorge River Airstrip, nestled amidst the stunning wilderness of New Zealand, offers a range of accommodation options to suit varying budgets and preferences. Whether you’re seeking a cozy retreat or a luxurious escape, Gorge River Airstrip has something to cater to every traveler’s needs.

1. Basic Lodgings: For those on a tight budget or looking for a no-frills experience, Gorge River Airstrip provides basic lodgings. These homely cabins or huts offer the essentials, like comfortable beds, a small kitchenette, and shared bathroom facilities. Although minimalistic, these accommodations ensure a peaceful stay surrounded by nature without breaking the bank.

2. Self-Catering Cottages: If you prefer a more self-sufficient stay, Gorge River Airstrip offers self-catering cottages. These charming cottages feature well-equipped kitchens where you can prepare your meals with ease. Enjoy the convenience of a private bathroom and unwind in the comfort of your own space, all while being immersed in the breathtaking natural surroundings.

3. Wilderness Retreats: Gorge River Airstrip also presents wilderness retreats that provide guests with a serene and secluded experience. These retreats boast stunning views, allowing you to soak in the beauty of the surrounding landscapes. Experience the tranquility of the river, enjoy privacy, and revel in the incredible natural wonders that Gorge River has to offer.

4. Lodges and Chalets: For those seeking a touch of luxury, Gorge River Airstrip offers lodges and chalets that exude comfort and elegance. These premium accommodations provide spacious living areas, well-appointed interiors, and private en-suite bathrooms. Immerse yourself in the lap of luxury while surrounding yourself with the pristine beauty of the New Zealand wilderness.

5. Exclusive Luxury Accommodations: Gorge River Airstrip takes indulgence to the next level with exclusive luxury accommodations that will truly enchant discerning travelers. These upscale retreats offer panoramic views, plush furnishings, spacious private decks, and state-of-the-art amenities. Delight in the utmost privacy and revel in the unparalleled beauty that Gorge River has to offer.

Whichever accommodation option you choose at Gorge River Airstrip, you can rest assured that your stay will be immersed in the awe-inspiring nature of New Zealand. From basic lodgings to indulgent luxury retreats, Gorge River Airstrip nurtures a sense of tranquility, making it an ideal destination for a memorable getaway.

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Attractions Nearby

1. Fox Glacier: Just a short distance from Gorge River Airstrip, Fox Glacier is a stunning natural wonder. Take a guided tour to witness the immense beauty of this ancient glacier and explore its ice caves and seracs.

2. Franz Josef Glacier: Another impressive glacier nearby, Franz Josef Glacier offers a range of activities such as heli-hiking, ice climbing, and guided tours. Marvel at the majesty of this ever-changing ice landscape.

3. Lake Matheson: Known for its mirror-like reflections of the Southern Alps and surrounding forests, Lake Matheson is a photographer’s paradise. Take a walk around the lake and capture the stunning vistas.

4. Gillespies Beach: A short drive from Gorge River Airstrip, Gillespies Beach is a picturesque coastal area offering breathtaking views of the Southern Alps and dramatic rock formations. Explore the beach, go fishing, or enjoy a picnic amidst pristine natural beauty.

5. Okarito Lagoon: A tranquil paradise for birdwatchers and nature lovers, Okarito Lagoon is home to a diverse range of bird species, including the rare white heron. Take a guided kayak tour to appreciate the serene beauty of this wetland ecosystem.

6. Haast Pass: Embark on a scenic drive through the stunning Haast Pass, winding through lush rainforests, roaring waterfalls, and towering mountains. Enjoy numerous viewpoints and short walks along the way.

7. Lake Paringa: Offering splendid views of snow-capped mountains and native bush, Lake Paringa is a serene spot for fishing, boating, or simply relaxing. The lake is also popular for salmon and trout fishing.

8. Ship Creek: Located within easy reach from Gorge River Airstrip, Ship Creek is renowned for its ancient Kahikatea trees and stunning coastal landscapes. Take a stroll along the boardwalks and bridges, keeping an eye out for native wildlife.

9. Knights Point Lookout: Offering breathtaking panoramic views of the rugged coastline and Tasman Sea, Knights Point Lookout is a must-visit. Enjoy sweeping vistas and soak in the beauty of the West Coast.

10. Westland Tai Poutini National Park: Just a short distance from Gorge River Airstrip, this national park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is home to stunning glaciers, lush rainforests, and pristine alpine lakes. Explore the numerous walking trails and experience the untamed beauty of New Zealand’s wilderness.


History of Gorge River Airstrip

The Gorge River Airstrip, located in the remote region of South Westland, New Zealand, holds a significant place in the country’s aviation history. Constructed in the early 1950s by the legendary back-country pilot, Alistair “Gorge” Sutherland, this small yet pivotal airstrip quickly became a lifeline for the isolated community living in the area. Situated within the boundaries of the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Te Wahipounamu, the Gorge River Airstrip played a crucial role in connecting this secluded region to the outside world.

Alistair Sutherland, a skilled bush pilot, recognized the need for an air transport option in the area, which lacked any roads or practical means of communication. Overcoming numerous logistical challenges and against all odds, Sutherland single-handedly crafted the Gorge River Airstrip using his expertise and limited resources available. Following its completion, this airstrip became the primary means of delivering supplies, providing medical assistance, and connecting the residents to the essential services they needed to sustain their lives in this remote corner of New Zealand.

Today, the Gorge River Airstrip stands as a testament to the pioneer spirit and ingenuity of Alistair Sutherland, who devoted his life to serving the isolated communities of South Westland. While the airstrip is no longer in regular use, its historical significance remains. It serves as a reminder of the determination and resilience of those who settle in remote regions, and the profound impact that aviation can have in bridging the gap between civilization and the most untouched corners of our beautiful planet.


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