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Auckland University Canoe Club

Whitewater kayaking and rafting

in New Zealand's most

beautiful places...

Rivers & Grading

Here, you'll find a guide indicating the grading of the whitewater rivers we regularly paddle. 'Grading' is used to classify the the difficulty of a section of river and determine the skill required to kayak through successfully, safely, and effectively. The higher the grade, the more skilled you must be in order to safely manoeuvre the river.

Click Here for a more detailed explanation of the International Scale of River Difficulty

AUCC river grading

Note: this is not an exhaustive list of rivers in New Zealand, merely the ones the club regularly paddles


Grade 2:

  • Aniwhenua - Rangataiki River (after powerstation)

  • Fulljames - Waikato River (after Aratiatia-Nga Awa Purua/FJ wave)

  • Kaituna River (slalom course)

  • Mohaka River (middle section)

  • Tarawera River

  • Wairoa River (play wave-slalom gorge)


Grade 3

  • Tongariro River - Access 10 (after Poutu dam)

  • Tongariro River - Access 13 (after Tree Trunk Gorge)

  • Kaituna River (after Tutea)

  • Mohaka River (bottom section)

  • Rangitaiki (after Jeff's Joy)

  • Waiari River

  • Wairoa (farm and bottom sections)


Grade 4

  • Tongariro River - Access 14 (after Rangipo dam)

  • Kaituna River (Tutea falls)

  • Mohaka River (top section)

  • Rangitaiki River (top section)

  • Wairoa River (top section)

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