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Voices from Auckland, New Zealand.


page 21


Proceeding from the North Cape around Hohora is the Muriwhena Block of Government land, comprising 86,885 acres, and further south is that of Warimaru, of 16,000 acres, on the Raugaunu, with a harbour accessible to large vessels. The Awanui streams flow through one of the most fertile valleys in New Zealand into this harbour, and are navigable by boats for 10 miles up; at Kaitaia in the valley of the Awanui is a Mission Station, a beautiful spot with half-a-dozen farms where there might be a hundred; the Government block of Ahipara, between Kaitaia and the west coast, is of good surface and great fertility.

The Victoria Valley contains some fine land, well wooded, in possession of the natives, who evince a disposition to sell if they can thereby secure the settlement of Europeans in their vicinity. There are several settlers in the Oruru, a rich valley; a vessel of 20 or 30 tons can enter the river.

The Harbour of Monganui lies on the south-east side of Doubtless Bay, a favourite resort of whaling vessels. It is a port of entry. The Oruaite and Kohomaru Valleys, that lead into the Harbour are fertile, and have been chosen as the seat of a special settlement. Very early potato crops, and the luxuriant bearing of the sweet pea, indicate the mildness of the winter there, and the shortness of its duration.

Five miles to the west of Monganui is Taipa, a small settlement at the ford over the River, which runs from the Oruru Valley into Doubtless Bay, near its outlet. Twenty miles further west is Kaitaia, a missionary station, where there is a very pretty church, and a good many Europeans. This is a lovely place with rich soil. Ten miles to the west of Kaitaia is Ahipara, on the west coast, a place being rapidly located with Europeans; a very pretty country and rich lands. A very neat church, capable of holding 150 persons, has been recently erected at Monganui. Monganui has four stores, where every description of article can be obtained. There is also a very comfortable hotel. There are also here a Post-office, Custom House and Queen's Warehouse, Resident Magistrate's Court, and a Gaol.

Monganui is visited every season, which commences about Christmas and ends about the following April, by about 30 whaling vessels, which come in for the purpose of procuring supplies of potatoes, onions, fresh meat, wood and water. Sometimes as many as 10 or 12 are here together, vessels of from 200 to 500 tons. Imports are principally tobacco and fish oil.

About 12 miles by land to southward of Monganui is the page 22Harbour of Wangaroa, with a narrow entrance, but deep water anchorage. To the south-west, from head of the Harbour, the Kaio Creek extends into one of the finest Kauri timber districts in New Zealand. Timber cutting here forms employment to a few settlers but might afford the means of wealth to hundreds.

The Government block of Matawherohia contains about 3,200 acres, all of wooded land, but rather remote from the water.

The Taruri and surrounding minor blocks extend over about 7,000 acres, the chief part of which is fine open fern land, interspersed with patches of forest. The soil is volcanic, and appears very fertile.

An overland mail leaves Monganui for Wangaroa Taraire and Russell Bay of Islands every alternate Tuesday, and returns on the following Saturday. On the Monday following the mailman leaves for Kaitaia and Ahipara, and returns on the following Thursday. Mails are sent to Auckland by sailing vessels on every opportunity, seldom more than a week elapses between the mails.