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Last reviewed: Thu, 16 Apr 2015

Bottle Lake Forest Park

Bottle Lake Forest Park and the Burwood Resource Recovery Park

There has been no poisoning operation within Bottle Lake Forest. It is a tragic event that took place recently, it appears the dog in question ate something red - according to the owner - and starting frothing at the mouth. Sadly it passed away later that night.
Rangers have searched the area and have not found anything of concern. We are being vigilant and will keep the public updated if anything of concern appears. We encourage dog owners to maintain control of their dogs at all times as there are always items in the natural environment, both natural ad foreign, that dogs may be tempted to eat. Dog owners who observe a decline in their dog's health after visiting the park are encouraged to contact their vet, and the city council (ph 941 8999) immediately.

Update on Dog Heath issue at Bottle Lake Forest Park; 1200hrs 15th April 2015
To date we have verified reports of one dead young Labrador from visits on the 24th March and at least three sick dogs from around the 3rd to the 6th April. Incident reports however show the dogs were at various and seperate locations on the park, from the west at Watikiri Drive to the east of the park at Broadhaven Reserve, and with no single apparent common thread. 

Council does not yet know what may have caused the reported incidents of dog illness/death in or around the Bottle Lake Forest Park, or if they are even directly related to visiting the park.

Because of this lack of information, warning signs have been installed at most park entrances at BLFP, directing owners to 'temporarily' keep their dogs on leash in the park, as a precaution against them eating foreign substances.

Continued grounds checks are being made around the park for possible accidental or intentional contaminants. Any suspicious discoveries should be reported to council immediately.

Water tests have been arranged for ponds for this week, looking for possible toxic algae.

Staff are also investigating the seasonal prevalence of poisonous toadstools or similar.

Local vets have been contacted to follow up on any other incidents such as possible diseases from contaminated faeces etc.


An area of the central Bottle Lake Forest Park is being used for the Burwood Resource Recovery Park operation following the February 22 earthquake.
Rubble and silt from the earthquake is being recycled at the park. A number of tracks have been re-routed and an exclusion area is in place for public health and safety.
Closed tracks and roads are clearly signposted and barricaded for the safety of the public.
All park users should be aware that heavy vehicles are using park roads, seven days per week, to access the Resource Recovery area and visitors should exercise extra caution at all times.
Park Rangers and security staff are patrolling the park and only authorised vehicles are allowed to enter the forest road at all times.

Visitor information

Two cyclists coming out of Bottle Lake Forest Park.

The main entrance and car park for Bottle Lake Forest is from Waitikiri Drive, off Burwood Road, via either Marshlands or Burwood. There is also access from Spencer Park and from North Shore along the Southern Pegasus Bay track.

Waitikiri Drive gates are open between 6am and 11pm year-round.

Gate closures are administered by ADT security. A call out fee will be charged to release vehicles.


Track distances:
Green Track 3km (Temporarily closed)
Blue Track 11.4km
MTB Track 9-12km depending on routes taken

Metroinfo has up-to-date bus information.

Things to consider:

  • Please take note of the fire risk. If you see smoke or fire please phone 111 immediately.
  • Operational logging areas are usually clearly signposted and marked 'out of bounds'. For your own safety please obey these temporary restrictions.
  • Dogs are allowed freely around the park.

About the park

Bottle Lake Forest Park is situated approximately 10km north-east of central Christchurch, adjacent to the coast. It is a production forest and trees are felled and logged in a 30 year rotation by Raynoier/Matariki Forests. Operational logging areas are usually clearly signposted and marked 'out of bounds'.

The visitor centre, located at the Waitikiri Drive entrance, has map boards and brochures with details of the tracks and trails which include mountain-bike tracks, horse-trekking trails and walking tracks. Tracks include long and short options to suit all ages and levels of fitness.

Developed from a farm in the early 1900s the forest expanded from coastal protection plantings to its present size. It is planted with mostly Pinus radiata and covers over 800 hectares of coastal sand dunes. The combined area of these forests is four times the size of Hagley Park and as such forms an important asset to metropolitan Christchurch.


The bird species present in an area depends on the type and diversity of habitats. As Bottle Lake is a working forest, this changes over time as the forest matures. Different areas at different stages of forest production will provide different habitats.

Plant life

Pine cones.

The forest consists mainly of Pinus radiata but is also host to an array of native and exotic understory plants. Throughout the plantation is a carpet of indigenous moss, lichens and common ferns such as bracken, pigfern, chain fern and occasional water fern.

The coastal strip bordering Bottle Lake Forest is largely dominated by marram grass and tree lupin, with remnants of some windblown stands of Pinus radiata, some macrocarpa and exotic ice plant which is now used to assist in dune stabilisation.

Contact us

Bottle Lake Forest Park Ranger


Authorising Unit: Transport and Greenspace

Last reviewed: Thursday, 16 April 2015

Next review: Saturday, 16 May 2015

Keywords: bottle lake, bottle lake forest, bottlelake, forest, forest parks, parklands, parks, parkswaterwaystrees, recreation, recreational activities, recreational facilities, tracks, tracks (walking), trails, walking biking tracks fitness physical exercise ac, walking tracks, walkways