In the recent AVA survey there were a couple of responses asking for more information around what is happening in Coronet Forest. Coronet Forest is the big area of hillside above Malaghans Rd, from Alan Reid Rd to about Remarkable Vets. It goes over the top of that hillside and down to Bush Creek.
This is council-owned land originally planted in pine as a forestry investment. After this big area of trees helped the spread of wilding pine into the back country council decided to harvest early. This is currently underway, and explains the large bare patches showing through. As part of this process the contractor has been required to plant grasses to assist with holding the hillside together and somewhat mitigating the impact on the view.
Once the harvesting has finished, the area will be replanted with a range of trees and become a recreation reserve. The current understanding is that this will most likely include a mix of native beech and other varieties to create more of the autumnal colours Arrowtown is known for. This has opened up an opportunity to look at some different options for how the land can be used, and led to the creation of the Arrowtown Tracks Group (find us on Facebook).
The initial focus of the group has been Coronet Forest, with a longer-term idea to look at the different opportunities for tracks and access around Arrowtown. Members of the group cover horse riding, tramping, walking, running and cycling and we have put together a rough idea of how the area could cater to each of these different activities. Conservation and education have also been included. This is shortly to be passed back to Council with the hope it is used as a basis for the plan council put out for community consultation.
The end goal is to have an amazing recreation space on our doorstep that can be enjoyed by a range of interests and ages.
— Dave Harding-Shaw, Arrowtown Tracks Group