It’s just been a few months since Mark traded his job as an Exhibition Project Manager at Te Papa for a life in nature.
“I’m learning the ropes and loving it. The role is very diverse, and no day is the same. As the park’s dedicated ranger, I help with the upkeep of the 50 kilometres of single track, which includes keeping a close eye on their conditions and ensuring they are kept within grade.
“The conservation aspect of the park is a big part of the job – working with the Mākara Peak Supporters and many volunteer groups to care for and plant trees.
“Our goal of planting one tree for every metre of track is working really well – this is something the volunteers and Wellington City Council have continued to do over the past 20 years. We are starting to see these planting efforts pay off with the likes of rimu and totara starting to push through the canopy.”
Mākara Peak Mountain Bike Park attracts over 100,000 visitors a year, including runners and walkers as well as bikers.
“As the ranger I like to think that my mahi helps ensure our park user experience is the best it can be and people’s day out in the park is awesome.”
Mark says working alongside the park’s community groups, assisting them with their trail building and conservation efforts, is a highlight of the job.
“It’s very rewarding to see these groups take real pride in the park, where they have a strong sense of connection and ownership.”