Curtis Falls


Curtis Falls

Curtis Falls is a charming waterfall, which is found along the Around the Mountain Circuit, at Mt Egmont National Park. Moderate access, requiring 2-3 hours of tramping, is fully paid off by quiet contemplation of the waterfall.

Driving and walking conditions

GPS of the view point: S 39° 18.093' E 174° 06.224'
Parking: Pembroke Rd, Egmont National Park
Vehicle type: All vehicle types Track type: Tramping track
Road type: Sealed Return track duration: 2hrs 30min

Waterfall parameters

Waterfall height: 15m Type of the waterfall: Horsetail

Rating:       ⭐⭐
GPS:          S 39° 18.093' E 174° 06.224'
Parking:     Pembroke Rd, Egmont National Park
Access:     2hrs 30min return walk

Walking and driving instructions


Curtis Falls is roughly a 45 minutes’ - 1 hour’ drive away from New Plymouth or 2 hours’ from Wanganui. The road surface is always sealed.

Make your own way to Stratford. From here turn into Pembroke Rd and follow it for the next 15km. Last few km is a magnificent road through a forest. Enjoy! There is a huge car park at Pembroke Rd (don't drive up to the end of the road, instead leave your car near Stratford Mountain House) with toilets and a well-maintained picnic area.

From the parking follow a tramping Curtis Falls track for 1h15min until you reach the waterfall. First part of the track follows the Around the Mountain Circuit; it has a couple of uphill/downhill sections, 3 footbridges and at least one rung-type ladder. Then the track descends to the river. Here, you need to turn left and follow the riverbed (upstream) for 10-15 minutes. There is no track as such – find your own way to the waterfall and make sure you wear the proper tramping boots.

First of all, you will reach the lower cascades (on the main photo), or you can call it a small waterfall (about 5-7m tall). There is a nice spot next to the waterfall’s base – here you can have lunch or just enjoy the falls beauty. Quite often you can see goats here.

Now search for a tiny un-signed track on the left of these waterfalls, and climb up. A few minutes of further walk and you will reach the base of the actual Curtis Falls. Many thanks to Sarah Davies for sharing the photos and details how to reach the main waterfall. Return via the same track.

Unfortunately, the waterfall is not seen from the main track (Around the Mountain Circuit), hence you have to do this side track which follows the riverbed.

Waterfalls nearby

Dawson Falls

Rating:       ⭐⭐⭐
Access:     20min return walk
Driving:   31.2 km (30 mins)

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Bells Falls

Rating:       ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Access:     8hrs  return walk
Driving:   63.0 km (53 mins)

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