Trail Safety

Important Update: New Zealand is currently at ORANGE level under the COVID-19 Protection Framework 

While enjoying the Alps 2 Ocean Cycle trail please follow public health guidelines found here  


Please note that there may be trail maintenance staff out working. If you come across maintenance or repair work sites, please follow all instructions of staff, ensure you maintain social distance from them and proceed through the site with care and caution.


Alps 2 Ocean Safety tool kit


Before you head out on the trail


Please have a read and make yourself familiar with:

  • A2O website - "Trail detail and maps' and 'Plan your ride' tabs
  • Safety guiduance documents - these can be downloaded HERE (Please note these are currently being reviewed and updated)
  • Greats Rides app - download this app for A2O trail information
  • PLB - plan to bring a PLB or hire one from one of the providers below

Plan to ride your bike or e-bike before you embark on your A2O adventure.  Get familiar with the bike and the way it handles on different surfaces including gravel.


When you are out riding


Remember to use and have handy:

  • A2O Brochure -  check the safety notes each day before you start each section
  • A2O Facebook page - maintenance and track status updates 
  • A2O website - Check the 'Trail status' page for any updates
  • Greats Rides app - sectional information for those who prefer it digitally
  • PLB - our alpine sections are remote and often without cell phone coverage so if anything happens, please use your PLB to raise help.


Once you've completed the trail


  • Report any incidents, accidents or near misses
  • Report any trail issues or concerns
  • Return your PLBs before your designated 'panic date'
  • Rest, relax and celebrate what you have achieved!



1. Plan your trip
Seek local knowledge and plan the route you will take and the amount of time you can reasonably expect it to take.
2. Tell someone
Tell someone your plans and leave a date to raise the alarm if you haven’t returned.  The NZCT recommends that you don’t ride alone, especially if you’re heading into remote areas.

The website below provides 3 simple options which enable you to tell someone all the details about your ride into the outdoors.

3. Be aware of the weather
New Zealand’s weather can be highly unpredictable.  Take care in the alpine portions of the trail, and dress accordingly. Always check the forecast before you head off and be prepared for weather changes. Check weather.
4. Know your limits
Your responsibility is to enjoy and maximise your riding experience, while minimising the risk to yourself and others.  Challenge yourself, but ride within your physical limits and ability.  
5. Take sufficient supplies
Make sure you have enough food, clothing, equipment and emergency rations for the worst-case scenario.  Take some basic bike tools for any repairs and an appropriate means of communication.
6. Have a back-up plan

If something goes wrong, mobile phone coverage is non existant on some parts of the Trail and you could be kilometres from the nearest road.  Consider taking a PLB (Personal Locator Beacon).  Should an emergency happen this will call in an emergency helicopter.  PLB's are available to hire and drop off at a network of providers along the Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail. 

PLB (Personal Locator Beacon) HIRE

Your PLB hire and drop off points can be found at the following towns and hire points along the Trail:

  • Aoraki / Mt Cook Village:- DOC Information Centre, Tel.- 03 435 1186 ,      1 Larch Grove, Aoraki Mt Cook Village, Canterbury 7999
  • Tekapo:- Bespoke Bike Tours, Tel.- 021 151 3742,       8 Simpson Lane, Lake Tekapo
  • Twizel:- Cycle Journeys Depot, Tel.- 03 435 0578,      3 Benmore Place, Twizel 7901
  • Ohau:- Lake Ohau Lodge, Tel. - 03 438 9885
  • Omarama:- Oasis Bar & Cafe, Tel. - 03 438 9722,      4 Chain Hills Highway, Omarama, Waitaki 
  • Kurow:- Kurow Museum and Information Centre, Tel. - 03 436 0950      57 Bledislow Street, Kurow, Waitaki  NOTE: No hire in the weekend.
  • Oamaru:- Presence on Harbour, Tel, - 027 349 0865,      1 Harbour Street Oamaru, Waitaki

‚ÄčPlease book your hire from the supplier closest to the starting point of your tour, your hired PLB can be dropped in at any of the other outlets mentioned by prior arrangement (some opening hours may be limited so check before you hire).

Mobile Phone Coverage

Mobile phone coverage varies by service provider, phone and band width e.g. 3G or 4G etc.  New Zealand has two service providers with many additional phone companies using either of these services and roaming plans are also possible. 


For maps for the two service providers follow their links below links, select the appropriate band width of your phone and zoom in on the area of the Cycle Trail you plan to ride.         and / or 


Note: The coverage map is indicative only, and is intended to provide general guidance on where the Vodafone network and outdoor coverage is available. Coverage may vary depending on your exact location and the type of device used.

Your experience may vary from the coverage shown depending on mobile capability, how it's used, and the local environment.



Following are a few simple tips to help keep you stay safe when you’re out on the road. 

Be Seen - Wear high visibility or brightly coloured clothing.  Use front and rear lights at night, in low light and in poor visibility such as fog or rain.

Be Aware - Watch and listen for approaching vehicles, pedestrians, potholes, animals, car doors opening and other potential hazards. 

Be Predictable - Make eye contact with other road users.  Maintain a straight line, keep to the left and signal your intentions clearly. 

Be Confident - Know how to safely approach railway crossings, roundabouts and intersections etc.  Use hand signals to indicate your intentions and a bell to alert other road users to your presence.

Be Safe - Ride to the conditions and follow the road rules.  Cycle no more than two abreast and ride single file where visibility is an issue or traffic is busy.  Keep at least one metre away from parked cars and use cycle lanes.

Be Patient - Slow down near parked or lined up vehicles.  Pass slowly and only when safe.   On narrow windy roads, pull over where practical to allow vehicles to pass.

Be Prepared - Wear an approved helmet and check your bike regularly.  Plan your route and carry sufficient water and food, along with basic tools for any repairs.


See our Instagram photos #Alps2Ocean
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