Meridian Hydro Half Marathon Route Description

The race starts at 10.30am at the location of the original Hydro Construction Village, now part of Kepler Farm. Around you in the paddocks you will see the old streets and the trees that were planted as part of the gardens in the temporary village.

The race exits from the southern entrance on to the Te Anau-Manapouri Highway and there is a 300m road run before turning into Balloon Loop. The speedier racers will have separated out from the slightly less speedy and you can settle into a nice pace with similar runners.

Balloon loop is the first part of the Lake2Lake Trail before re-joining the 4WD track for a short time before heading back on trail to near Rainbow Reach. The first drink station will greet you.

An uphill section leads to a minor side road crossing before descending past the ox-bow lake and enjoying the spectacular river and mountain views as you speed towards Queens Reach, in and out of native bush areas. Queens Reach is reached by an uphill section, then along the top terrace with great views, followed by a narrow downhill forest trail and a short road section with a ford!
Just around the corner is the second drink station.

From Queens Reach the trail follows the Upper Waiau River firstly at river level before climbing up to higher terraces on three occasions. A relatively flat section with a few rises lets you reach the Lake Te Anau Control Structure where another drink station will greet you.

From there, the township of Te Anau will pop in and out of view.  Follow stunning lake and mountain views, passing Tui Bay and the Bird Sanctuary and on past the Marakura Yacht Club. (Those that have competed before, new to 2021 the finish line has been moved from here to town.)

You’ll continue with the waterfront on your left and past the Department of Conservation Office, and into the township of Te Anau. Only the final lakefront run is left to complete before finishing at Lions Park.  

Elevation is between 190m and 240m.


On the Day

Collecting your bibs and race information

Athletes have twos options to collect their bibs in town 

Friday night at Outside Sports in town 5pm – 7pm
Saturday at the Meridian Marquee in Lions Park 8am – 9.30am 

Safety pins will be provided for the bibs

Those that have booked the bus transport will be able to collect their bus ticket, if not please make your way on Saturday to the start line at Kepler Farm for a 10.25am safety briefing. Signage will be out


Start Line Kepler Farm

There will be a safety briefing at 10.25am and the race starts at 10.30am at Kepler Farm

Please follow directions of the race organiser on the day.

Parking is available at Kepler Farm start line – if you decide to leave your vehicle here we ask that you collect it before 5pm that evening as it is private land and the gate needs to be locked

There will be a “drop trailer” available to leave personal items/ coats – please provide your own bag and ideally label it with your name. These will be transported to the finish line to collect there. No valuables please.

Transport to Start

Transport from the “check in” at Lions Park to the start at Kepler Farm is available at $15pp
Book your transport via your registration link.


  • There will be ample toilets at the bus departure point
  • We will provide portaloos at the start line
  • Rainbow Reach public toilet 500m off the trail
  • Queens Reach Public toilet
  • Near the Control Structure at the Kepler Track Main Car Park
  • Bird Park Public toilets
  • Finish line Public toilets and portaloos


Finish Line

Lions Park is in Te Anau town centre, between Te Anau Terrace and Mokanui Street, easy walking distant to the cafes and accommodations

Kepler Farm Start

There will be parking for spectators and athletes here although we request all vehicles left are removed before 5pm on race day as this is a private farm and the gates will locked after that.

Water Stations Enroute

This is a zero rubbish (cup free) event so we ask you bring your own container
Suitable “SpeedCups” are available from most sports shops in New Zealand.
Water will be available at the following locations:-

• Start line
• Rainbow Reach
• Queens Reach
• Te Anau Control Gates
• Finish line

Prize Giving

Prizegiving will be at the Meridian Marquee, at the finish line at 2.30pm 
Finishers medals are included for all “Meridian Hydro Half Marathon” athletes that complete the race before end of day and pack up time

Prize Money

1st Male $300 & 1st Female $300
2nd Male $200 & 2nd Female $200
3rd Male $100 & 3rd Female $100

**New**  “Gender diverse category” ie when you select “not specified” prizes will be sponsored by Meridian Energy*

*We understand that gender identity can be a private or difficult concept for some.
If you choose to participate in the gender-diverse category and succeed in placing in 1st, 2nd or 3rd, the following options are available to you:
a. Receive your award on the podium as per the winners from other categories.
b. Have your award sent to you privately


Spot prizes

We have some very generous supporters of the event who normally donate a large number of spot prizes. Some of these will be awarded during the race to be collected as you finish. Some will also be awarded at prize giving. 

Spectator Viewing

Although you can watch the athletes at the start at Kepler Farm, there will be a short delay exiting the car park as the athletes need to leave the area before the cars are allowed to depart along the road.
The best opportunity is at the 6km point at Rainbow Reach where there is adequate parking.
There is also parking close to the Te Anau Control Structure at the Kepler Track carpark
Although there is some parking at Queens Reach – due to the race there is likely to be a wait to exit this area so not advised to view here by car.
Finally we encourage you to cheer the athletes as they run along the lakefront through town and at the finish line at Lions Park.

Spectator Parking

Kepler Farm Start

There will be parking for spectators and athletes here although we request all vehicles left are removed before 5pm that day as this is a private farm and the gates will locked after 5pm

Marakura Yacht Club

There is very limited parking available near the Marakura yacht club.
A good parking option is at the DOC Visitor Centre long term car park and also parking and toilets at the adjacent Ivon Wilson Park.

Health & Safety

If any participant becomes distressed or exhausted – the Safety Director or Race Director has the right to withdraw that person from the event.  

Your Fitness

Runners and walkers should be quite certain that they are fit enough and sufficiently well trained to complete this event. If you are unsure about your general health or fitness consult your family doctor before embarking on a training program. There are many running/ walking training programs available on the net.

Road Closures/ Course Safety

There will be limited road closures in Te Anau… however runners and walkers should remain vigilant, obey normal pedestrian rules and respect other trail users at all times.

The trail is still open to the public although usually quieter in Winter. However, runners and walkers should constantly be on alert and follow all directives from the course safety marshals.

Runners and walkers must follow the indicated channeling of the cones where necessary.

Walkers should walk no more than two abreast and keep single file/ to the left on narrower sections of the course to allow runners to pass safely.

Competitor List

You will be able to view the list of registrations after registration goes live