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The Changing River and Access for Boats

Jet-boating enthusiasts find a way onto the river. We can see that from the 2013 World Jetboat Championship event held on southern rivers including the Waitaki.

Boat ramp

Waitaki River channels actively migrate from bank to bank. The boat launching site on the south side east of the main road bridge became unusable around 2010 due to the river coursing northwards.

A new boat ramp was established by the society in January 2016 on the north bank of the river as a replacement.  The site chosen is nestled within what was the newly constructed rock groyne protection river works 2012 (for the NZTA- Transit) to protect the state highway assets from river erosion.   All construction was carried out by local contractor Rooney Earthmoving.
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The society has undertaken to keep this launching facility adequately maintained for its useful life.  Fluctuating river flows and migration remain apparent as users will observe at the boat ramp environment as of summer 2019.    The site now seems to be rather popular  for swimming also.

Fishing and other access

Years ago the Lower Waitaki River Management Society prepared a brochure giving brief details of river access for anglers. This brochure is published no longer.
Anglers wishing to gather details of access to the Waitaki River should make contact to the local Fish & Game Society. Access has become more complicated in recent years due to (a) Health & Safety obligations placed on owners of land which is crossed to gain access, (b) freedom camping (c) rubbish dumping on isolated sites to avoid landfill fees (d) regrowth of scrub including gorse.
LWRMS does not plan to re-publish the brochure at present.