While down South on my Trinidad cruise I spotted Tutanekai dropping off people at the Bay of Many Coves resort in Queen Charlotte Sound. Tutanekai was built by E.R. Lane in Picton in 1930 & measures 42’x10’x3’6”. The zoom zoom comes from a 115hp GM 471 diesel.

She started life as a mothership that towed harpooned whales back to the whaling station. Post those days, she was a mail boat for 30 years, then a fishing boat, & then worked in & around the mussel farming industry for 20 years. When retired she was very run down & her current owner Pete, restored her to what we see today.

These days Tutanekai is the backbone of Pete & wife Takutai’s tourism business – ‘Myths & Legend Eco-Tours’

In the last photo, we see Trinidad at anchor, while we were brunching 🙂

Can any southern woodys tell us any more about Tutanekai?

Harold Kidd Input – E.R. Lane built TUTANEKAI for Charley Perano and K. Sutherland in 1930. Her original engine was a 2 cylinder 18hp Regal. Peranos sold her to M T H Steele in 1936, he sold her to Kennys in 1942, later Queen Charlotte Transport in 1948. Peter Beech owned her in 2002. The Regal was replaced with a 4 cylinder Sterling then a 6 cylinder Hercules in 1935 and a 471 GM in 1946. In 1940 a Government report stated that she had a maximum speed of 10 knots and a range of 180 nm at 8 kn.



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Rongotia has featured before on WW , as a Mystery Launch, we uncovered the info below on her. What we did not have back then was any colour, recent times photos. Thanks to both Nathan Herbert’s & my own visits to Waikawa Bay Marina, Picton, we can now see her in her finery. Previous WWW story below –  https://waitematawoodys.com/2016/08/18/rongotai/

Harold Kidd previously commented that she was built by Cox & Filmer in Auckland in 1939 with twin “64hp kerosene engines” she went almost straight into NAPS at Whangarei as Z31 under Les Waldron’s command. He kept her in a shed on the road to Onerahi. He went to see her with John Gladden around 1982. She was still highly original and in her original shed. She had twin Morris Commodores (which may have been original) and was in very tidy order.

 Dawn Wilschefski – advised that she was the only daughter of Les Waldron & can confirm that Rangotai was launched Christmas Day 1939. Her design was Hughie Coxsmith (? see HDK’s comments above). Her Grandfather James Reid was probably consulted during the process. When the Niagara went down her Dad was in Russell but made the trip back in time to join the other boats out on rescue duty. He was also part of the Naval Auxilliary Patrol that started in Whangarei a few months after the sinking but when the Navy took over the organization Rongotai was transferred to Auckland where she served on the boom patrol, specifically  from Whangaparoa to Cape Colville. When her Dad died in 1963, her brother Bert bought Rongatai and used her for family pleasure for a while. He tried to sell her at an exorbitant price but finally used her for a trade in for a Wellington boat (name forgotten) Last she heard of, Rongotai was working as a “slow” cruising boat for tourists in the Marlborough Sounds. Her Dads reason for building her was (a) family pleasure and (b) for deep sea fishing as a founding boat for the Whangarei Deep Sea Anglers.

Yachts at Kawau Island – Sailing Sunday – Win A WW T-Shirt


Yachts at Kawau Island – Sailing Sunday – Win A WW T-Shirt

This Mansion House Bay, Kawau Island photo from the ‘NZ Car, Boats, >>> Utes Pre’75’ FB page shows a great collection of classic yachts (& a few launches).

I’ll put up a WW t-shirt to the woody that can ID the most yachts – given my launch angle – I’ll get a yachty to verify the answers. To stop copy-catting, entries ONLY via email to




The 97th Lipton Cup race is set to take place on the 17th of March. 22 miles of blood, sweat and tears is to be raced by the 22ft L Class ‘mullet boats’ to see who will triumph as the winner of the esteemed Lipton Cup trophy. This is a highlight of the yachting calendar and this year it appears there will be fierce competition with a number of the mullet boats performing exceptionally well in recent racing. With only 3 years to go until the 100th you can expect there to be a lot more competition and boats coming out of the wood work to compete in following years. Previous crew and owners are always welcome to come down and watch with the club open all day with food and refreshments (with a lift for the weathered yachties).

The days events are as follows:

7am – Hot cooked breakfast (Prebooked)

9am – Race briefing

11am – Race commences

3pm approx – Race finishes

6pm approx – Prize giving and after party

Watch Video footage from last years race here https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=3&v=LAZotynoqiA


Woodys at Kawau Island


Woodys at Kawau Island

The above photo of Kawau Island is ex Lew Redwoood via the facebook page ’New Zealand Cars,Boats,Motorbikes,Trucks,Vans,Utes,Pre 1975′  -the photo is tagged ‘ Pleasure craft at anchor in Mansion House Bay. 

How many woodys can we ID?, I know Nathan Herbert was a little excited to see the family launch Pacific in the shot (top right).

If you are on facebook – you should ‘follow’ this page, there are some very cool old woody photos that pop up from time to time.

Aussie Boat Porn

I have featured several times The Australian Wooden Boat Festival that happens very 2 years in Hobart, Tasmania, Australia. The video below is a 100% publicity video for Tasmania & the event – but dam its good. Have look, you’ll be blown away by the number of stunning woodys. Thanks to the USA based on-line membership only video website –  offcenterharbour.com for making the video available. Its a great site, I’m a member.




KAIWHAKA – Work Boat Wednesday

Kaiwhaka was launched in 1937, by W G Lowe, Auckland & was used as a lighter to overseas ships at the port of Wanganui. She was taken over in March 1941 after the last meat loading at the port, which with other smaller ports was closed to overseas shipping as a wartime measure. She sailed to Auckland with a naval crew, converted to a Danlayer, with some mine sweeping gear fitted & commissioned 21/5/41 & given the pennant No T14.

She went to Fiji in March 1942 & worked with the flotilla there laying defensive minefields, until returning to Auckland six weeks later. She made several visits to Wellington, working as a Danlayer there till June 1941, then worked as a minesweeper in Hauraki Gulf to May 1944 when clearing the defensive fields began. Her war service as a Danlayer ended in Sept 1945.

She was handed back to the Marine Department in Nov 1945 & refitted, completing this in March 1946. There were wrangles over compensation as it was claimed substandard kauri was used in her construction and she had a poor hull condition. The matter went to Cabinet and a payment of 50,000 pounds in full settlement was approved July 1947 & she did not return to Wanganui, instead becoming a lighter at Gisborne in 1949, but not sold to them till Oct 1953. The new port there made her redundant in 1967, sold in March 1968 to Tauranga for private use. Sold again, had a helicopter pad fitted at the stern and used in Fiordland venison recovery 1973. To Oamaru in 1974, Auckland 1977, and last heard of in Matauwhi Bay, Bay of Islands in 1986.

Ken Ricketts feels the photo above was taken off Bon Accord Harbour, Kawau Island. The wartime minesweeping fleet regularly used the island as an anchorage.

Geoff Brebner commented that In the latter part of the 1970’s, she was moored in the upper Tamaki River, with her mast drastically shortened in order to navigate the Panmure Bridges. She was later taken north, and he believes she may have been taken to sea and scuttled.

Can anyone confirm the fate of Kaiwaka?

Thanks to Geoff Brebner, Chris Rabey & Ken Ricketts for the detailed intel & photo

CYA Classic Yacht Regatta 2018 – 50+ Photos





















CYA Classic Yacht Regatta 2018 – Day Two – Race 2 – 50+ Photos

Popped out early on Raindance to catch the start of the regatta – not much of a day for photos, overcast………. but the stick & rag boys would have been happy with the breeze.

If there appears to be a high degree of repetition with the photos – thats because there were not a lot of classics competing. A-division had a good turn out but you could count the rest with out having to take our shoes & socks off.

Maybe everyone sleep in & they turned up for the afternoons race ?

Numbers aside – bloody impressive sight when they are all powered up. Things got a little tense at the start – some very un- corthinthian yachting language was heard, more often then not, the worst culprits always seem to flying a small blue burgee…… 😦

Below – My Pick For Best Photo (not mine, ex Jason Prew’s FB page)

When you arrive 5 mins late for the start you have to do whatever it takes to get into the race – it’s not often you see Jason out of the cockpit, let alone on Wairiki’s rail 🙂


Lake Rotoiti 2018 Classic & Wooden Boat Parade – 240+ photos















Lake Rotoiti 2018 Classic & Wooden Boat Parade – 240+ photos

Last weekend marked the 21st birthday of the Lake Rotoiti Classic & Wooden Boat Parade.

The parade is one of the icon wooden boating events in New Zealand, with each year between 70 & 100+ classics on display. The LRC&WB Association are very active & hold many events thru-out the year, but the parade is the highlight. You would struggle to find a more inclusive, welcoming group of people that each year open the parade & picnic to anyone with a classic or woody boat – sail, power, big, small.

On the day we ‘enjoyed’ a mix of weather from fine > light drizzle > rain > fine, this didn’t stop everyone having a blast but taking photos was a challenge at times – a little bit of editing hopefully has help out 🙂 The photos of the ‘speed’ boats doing a demonstration run (health & safety red tape means it can not be called a race) were shot with a very long lens, so a little soft focus.

Post the picnic, several boats headed off to the Manupirua thermal pools, which are only accessible via boat. To an Auckland boaty the concept of pulling up at a jetty, tying up, & enjoying a soak in a hot thermal pool is rather special + its licensed, so one can enjoy a refreshing beverage, very civilised. 

I would like to thank LRC&WB Association past commodore – Fraser Wilson, for the generous loan of his RIB, sure makes getting around & taking photos easy. 

Each year my LRC&WBP experience is extended & 2018 saw Robyn & I hosted at Florence & Rod Prosser’s waterfront property. Berthed at Rod’s jetty is the 1882, 25’ counter stern day launch – Firefly, which now has a playmate in the recently acquired 1930, 23’ Chas Robinson built motor-launch – Rainbow. There are several more boats in the stable but I won’t out Rob on the exact number 🙂 

In addition to their holiday home, Rod & Florence run a very funky, cool lakeside bach called ‘The Love Shack’ – its available for rent (via BookaBach, see link below). If you a ever looking for accommodation in the Rotorua area I would highly recommend it – see photos below – AND its got WiFi !!!!!      https://www.bookabach.co.nz/baches-and-holiday-homes/view/2381

I hope you enjoy the photo gallery as much as I do attending the event. 



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