A popular Bay of Islands hiking trail has been closed temporarily after a walker fell from an eroded section of the track.
The 8km Paihia to Opua Coastal Walkway is popular with locals and tourists, and forms part of the Te Araroa trail from Cape Reinga to Bluff.
However, the Far North District Council has closed part of the walkway after an Opua woman was injured in a fall on November 25.
Closure signs have been put up at English Bay Rd and Beechy St in Opua while the council awaits an engineer's assessment about how to reinstate the trail and make it safe.
The rest of the track remains open.
• New walkway puts hikers in the loop
• Northland news in brief: pie competition begins and Opua walkway washout
• Time to hot foot it around history sites
• Five historic walks around Waitangi
The woman's husband told the Advocate she had slipped on gravel at a narrow, eroded section of the track and fallen over the edge.
She managed to stop her fall onto oyster-covered rocks 3m below by dropping onto her forearms and holding on with her fingertips.
Council infrastructure management Andy Finch said the woman was lucky to escape with only scrapes and bruises.
''This is a very popular walk for locals and visitors alike, and its closure will be a disappointment. However, we must ensure it is safe for all users before we reopen it. We will keep residents informed of progress.''
The alternatives for Te Araroa hikers who choose to heed the signs are to walk to Opua via State Highway 11 — which is arguably more dangerous — or to hire a kayak from Paihia to Waikare, the next waypoint on the trail after Opua.
It's not the first time the track has been closed. In April 2018, the section between Opua and the Paihia Top 10 Holiday Park was temporarily closed after parts of the track were washed away by storms.