2017 Schedule

The following times and locations are subject to change. The Tarawera Ultramarathon is a four-day long ‘race week’ starting on Thursday morning, ending on Sunday evening.

Thursday February 9th

Scenic Boat Cruise on Lake Tarawera

When: Departs 11am
Where: Departs from The Landing, Lake Tarawera. Limited to 50 people total.
Cost: Adults $80, children 12 yrs and under $40.

This is a wonderful opportunity for you to explore some of the most remote and inaccessible parts of the Tarawera Ultramarathon course by boat, hang out with some famous runners and meet the organisers. Lunch is included.

The tour leaves and returns to The Landing on Lake Tarawera. This includes a ‘get on and off’ at Humphries Bay and the Outlet for a recce of the course including the isthmus between Humphries and Okataina and part of the Tarawera Waterfalls Track. The tour concludes at Te Rata Bay – Hot Water Beach for a hot soak or a cold swim. Essentials – Swimming outfit, towel, camera.


NEW IN 2017!
The world’s inaugural DOGAINE

When: Thursday 9 February 2017 Registration from 4.45pm. Event Start 5.30pm
Where: Reserve next to Holiday Inn, 10 Tyron Street, Rotorua
How: Teams of 2-5 human runners plus one canine runner (leads are mandatory please)
Cost: Voluntary cash donation for SPCA

This year, the annual Tarawera Ultra Thursday evening fun run will be a Rogaine* run with a twist for a cause – every team must have a dog (=Dogaine) and we are raising funds for the Kawerau and Rotorua SPCA.

Teams of 2- 5 runners plus one dog per team must find as many hidden checkpoints in the forest as possible in one hour. Please sign up for the event on our Facebook page if you are interested in coming. The page can also be used to form teams and find your canine partners – if all fails, bring a fluffy toy dog with you. The event doubles as a fundraiser for the Kawerau and Rotorua SPCA’s through paws4kawerau – both centres will be present and bring some of their dogs to take part in the event also.

Event organiser Katrin Webb says the event will be hilarious total dog chaos and a test to see who is faster and smarter – dogs or humans! There will also be spot prizes up for grabs for your canine partners.

*A Rogaine is a ‘treasure hunt’ completed in teams, where you’ll be given a map with a number of points to find. The highest value points are placed the furthest away. You’ll have a fixed time to get as many points as you can within the allotted time (around one hour). For every minute that your team arrives after the cut-off time, you lose points.

The rules? Anything goes! Once out of the Reserve next to Holiday Inn, you do not need to stick to the tracks – you can jump over logs, run straight up the hills and get yourselves hopelessly lost – it’s all part of the fun.


Friday 10th February

Official Race Welcome

When:  8:30am – Friday 10th February
Where: Te Aronui a Rua Marae, Te Puia, Hemo Road, Rotorua

FREE for all registered athletes. Friends and family pay the standard Te Puia rates. More info at www.tepuia.com.

Haere mai – Welcome to Rotorua, New Zealand! The official welcome to the event will be a Powhiri (welcome) at Te Aronui a Rua Marae, Te Puia, Rotorua. In the traditional style of the people of the Te Arawa tribe, you will be welcomed onto the marae (meeting house). It is an honour for the event to be welcomed onto such a magnificent and sacred site. You will be welcomed by Her Worship, Steve Chadwick, Mayor of Rotorua. The official 2017 race photograph will take place in front of the marae immediately after the welcome. Te Puia is a 10-15 minute walk from the Rotorua Holiday Inn.


Event Expo

When: 12 noon to 8pm – Friday 10th February
Where: Pohutu Cultural Theatre, Rotorua Holiday Inn. 10 Tryon Street, Rotorua.

The Race Expo will be open during this time so you can find all the latest and greatest stuff in the world of trail running, including specials from Compressport, Hoka One One, Ultimate Direction, Tailwind Nutrition and Buff Headwear. There will also be exhibitions and deals from Te Puia and the Rotorua i-Site Visitor Information Centre.

You can pick up your Tarawera Forest permit from here too. Croucher Brewing will be offering free samples of their craft beers to help settle your pre-race nerves.

The Tarawera Store will be open, selling Tarawera Ultra branded Compressport shirts, silicone cups, thermal mugs, medal holders, Tarawera elevation profile tattoos, wall art (half price!), 2017 wall planners and trail running books. Eftpos and Credit Card facilities will be available.


Race Briefing

When: 11am-11:45am –  Friday 10 February
Where: Te Puna Aroha Room. Rotorua Holiday Inn.

Who: Paul Charteris, Tim Day, representatives of landowners along the Tarawera Ultramarathon course, and our Medical Director. Race briefing for runners and their crew. This covers the course, race rules, drop bags, relays, Aid Stations, spectating and crewing, travel times. Seating is limited to 300. We will post a briefing video online about a week before race day which will contain all the same information as this race briefing.

Elite Athlete Q&A

When: 12-noon to 1:20pm – Friday 10 February
Where: Te Puna Aroha Room. Rotorua Holiday Inn.

Moderated by the ever-entertaining and knowledgeable Kerry Suter (2X Tarawera champion) from SquadRun. The elite athlete question and answer session will be your chance to ask some of the world’s top runners about their training philosophy, race strategy, nutrition, shoe choice, recommended beer… This session is always a favourite. Your chance to learn from the best.


Race Registration

When: 3pm to 8pm – Friday 10 February
Where: Te Puna Aroha Room, Holiday Inn. 10 Tryon Street, Rotorua.

  • Pick up your race programme and race number during this time. No race numbers or timing chips will be handed out on race day morning or any other time.
  • We will check the photo ID of all runners when picking up their race programme and race number, so please bring your photo ID to registration.
  • 87km and 102km solo entrants: You MUST be weighed before registering.
  • 62km solo entrants and relay teams: If you cannot make it to registration between 3 and 8pm, someone else can pick up your race programme and race number. Please make sure that person brings a copy of your photo ID.
  • If compulsory gear is required, we may check this gear at registration. Please be prepared to bring the gear and have it ready to be inspected by a volunteer.
  • Your timing chip is on the back of your race number.
  • Make sure a volunteer records that you have received your race programme and race number.
  • Drop bag labels will be given to you at race registration. You MUST use the official TUM drop-bag labels if you wish to use drop bags this year – our volunteers will be checking that you have the correct labels.  We will not be accepting any drop bags without the official labels.  Please leave your drop bags with the appropriate truck or van before 8pm. These will be in the carpark outside the Holiday Inn.
  • You must indicate if you have decided to change your race distance, relay team name or team members (and pay the $30 admin fee). There will be a change-over desk at registration.
  • Athletes’ Emergency Contact. We will check the phone number of your emergency contact at race registration. This must be a contact who can be reached on race day.
  • Volunteers will be on hand to answer questions during the race check-in on Friday afternoon and during the pre-race briefing. Ask lots of questions!
  • If you do not register before 8pm on Friday, you DO NOT RACE the following morning. There will be no exceptions!


 Saturday 11th February: Race Day

87km/102km Race: Starts at 6am at the Redwoods Visitor Centre (Longmile Rd, Rotorua) – Please aim to be at the start line no later than 5.20am.

62km Race: Starts at 7.15am – Please take our free shuttle bus at the Redwoods at 6.10-6.20am (immediately after the start of the two longer runs). There will be no public access to the 62km start area on Millar Rd, Lake Okareka.


Sunday 12th February:


When: 12 noon – 1:30pm
Where: Rotorua Holiday Inn, 10 Tyron St.
Please join us as we share the results, stories and photos from the previous day. The top placegetters will share their experience of the race – so your chance to learn how it went for some of the best ultrarunners in the world. We will have any unclaimed drop bags and lost property at prizegiving.


Celebration Dinner at Skyline

When: 6pm
Where: Skyline, 178 Fairy Springs Road, Rotorua

All runners, volunteers, friends and family are welcome to join the organisers as we celebrate the official end of race week. Dinner will be a full buffet at Stratosfare Restaurant & Bar, Skyline – high above the city of Rotorua. We know you’ll be hungry!

Following a gondola ride to the top, Stratosfare features a stunning array of freshly prepared buffet and cooked-to-order dishes highlighting locally sourced seafood, meat and produce, Stratosfare takes you on a gastronomic journey. From the tidal mussel tank, ensuring the freshest mussels you can find, to the flame rotisserie, Art of the Grill chef station, seasonal salads and delicate cooked-to-order crepes, this restaurant is a unique and decadent Rotorua dining experience.

Seating is limited – so please reserve your place on the Facebook event page.

Return Gondola and Stratosfare Dinner Buffet
$59 per person, children 5-14yrs $29 and under five’s are free.