photo & details from Tom Morris

The photo above of the Mac McGeady designed/built launch Aquila was taken from the wharf at Whitianga in the late 1950’s & shows in the background the launch Cara Mia, at that time Cara Mia was owned by Don Ross who later became harbour master at Whitianga and an officer of the Mercury Bay Big Game Fishing Club. The photo appeared in the ‘Auckland Weekly News’ at the time.

I think Aquila, powered by twin 100hp engines, was originally built as Mac’s own vessel & later sold to a Mr Chub Sibun.

Can anyone confirm / added to the details on Aquila & Ngaroma?

Photos of Aquila below in Coralie Bay, Great Mercury Islands (ex Karen Moren ex Lyn McGeady ex Ben Hipkins)

21 thoughts on “Aquila

  1. Thanks for getting back. Have enlarged the photo and it is amazing how after all these years the memories fall into place.My dad Don Ross is enjoying the feedback as he spent some time with the Macs both in Whitianga and Auckland. At 92 he now lives with us in Katikati and just loves to re-live his past
    boating days and the people met..


  2. Sorry, not pekingese but pomaranian, and yes Lyn that is probably me, my pic is on the forward deck nearest bow, of the pic of Aquila,at beginning of post.Lila McGeady is lady 3rd person to right hand.


  3. Tom, I’m Don’s daughter Lyn replying to your recent comment re Mac’s dog Honey. I remember the name now that you mention it. As I was only eight or nine at the time you probably seemed old to me if you are the person who I remember was usually on board when we visited the boat moored in Back Bay. If my memory is correct you had fair or sandy coloured hair?


  4. Merv, Mac and Lila’s dog was a pekingese name of Honey,my job was to row her ashore night and morning lol, and yes I also enjoyed the coke on board, being a young teenager at the time.


  5. I have two photos of Aquila at Coralie Bay, Great Mercury Islands ex Lyn McGeady ex Ben Hipkins which I’ll try to enlarge before sending them to Alan as they are small photos.


  6. My wife Lyn (Don’s daughter) was about 8 or 9 at the time this photo was taken. She remembers rowing over to Back Bay at Whitianga with her parents Don and Joan Ross to visit the McGeady’s aboard the `Aquila’. The highlight for Lyn was the refreshments of Coca Cola she had while the others all had something stronger! Lyn remembers a friend or boatman with them but doesn’t know his name. Their Pekingese/Pug?? dog was also aboard. Her dad Don visited Mac frequently at his premises in Auckland also.
    Don was game fishing with `Ngaroma’ then but she was an older style double ender not the boat in todays post. Will e-mail a photo separately.


  7. Cool to see Cara Mia, was just just the other day looking at the plaque that held the teeth from a Mako my Grandad boated onboard Cara Mia out of Tutukaka in ’65. 487lbs or so and the biggest fish of the year.


  8. Present day photo is of Cara Mia at Tutukaka. Old photo is of Cara Mia in Whangarei basin. Post photo shows the same boat in background. If a Chris-Craft design, certainly not the cabin, and the topsides resemble a CC Commander hull but don’t appear to be slave to the design. There are a lot of pics of Cara Mia online in various years…


  9. The launch in the background is not Cara Mia. She was built by the Dinsdale family in the early 1950s to a Chris Craft design. She started chartering out of Tutukaka 1958, and is still in Tutukaka. Differant outrigger configuration, belting line, and to my knowlage always a tut boat.


  10. Nathan, It is Cara Mia, I can now remember Mac telling me about Don Ross and Cara Mia. The Mercury Bay Game fishing Club gave me the name Ngaroma but I think that is an error.
    Regards, Tom.

    Just updated – Alan H


  11. I have a strong suspicion that the boat in the background is Miss Lidgard. Don chartered her for deep sea fishing out of Whitianga for decades.


  12. Tom, Would love a copy of that pic. Would be great if you could send me a copy, as I haven’t got that one ( — KEN R


  13. That is not Ngaroma in the back ground. I have a photo of her some were.


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