Maureen Anne



Paul Drake sent in the two brilliant Taupo photos above, the photo above of Maureen Anne were recently given to Paul’s brother Michael, by one Maureen West nee Somerville who would love to know where this boat Maureen Anne is now.

She was built in Taihape by F.W. Somerville, Joiners. Maureen’s father was Ben Somerville, part of the firm. She was launched at Taupo in about 1948 & appears to be about 23′.

The second photo also came into view only recently. It is of the Boat Harbour at Taupo, in the late 1940’s/early 1950’s. The photo shows Maureen Anne in the distance on her mooring, just ahead of Romance.

On her mooring mid river is Col Wild’s 1936 Lamorna. Tied up to the river bank is El Alamein (now Ranui) – McGeady, ( third from left) in one of her earlier configurations. Also Arcadia (Slattery – second from right) and various other unknown woodys. Oh, and first on left is Wyona, a large clinker who biodegraded many years ago.

Update from Alan Craig – below are 2 photos related to todays (above) Taupo story.
Tony Mitchell had the print of Wyona, and Alan also found the post card on trademe of the ferry, at the time named ‘Rotoiti’, that use to go through the channel to Rotorua. Not quite the same boat but some one might recognise it.

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Lake Boat Truckers


El Alamein



Lake Boat Truckers

Rotorua boat builder Alan Craig sent me the above selection of photos that he ‘uplifted’ from a book owned by Tony Mitchell, its called – Urewera Trucks and Truckers, by Gavin M. Abbot. The photos showcase some of the boats that the truckers used to cart around the lakes.

Now ID’ing the first one is easy, El Alamein, because its got a name plate on her bow, how many of the others can we ID? Remember you can enlarge photos by clicking on them 😉

Waihaha (Lena >Avalon)

photos & details from Alan Craig

When talking with Alan Craig the Lake Rotoiti boat builder a few weeks ago re the restoration of  Manowai (ww 14-09-2015), he casually mentioned that he had just ‘put another boat in the water’. The other is Waihaha, previously named Avalon when she was on Lake Taupo. Alan’s yard, Craig Marine, installed a new Volvo D2 engine & raised and extended the wheel house as the old one was rotten. You will see from the above photos that they have done a great job, it so easy to get the proportions all wrong.

So woodys, what do we know about Waihaha>Avalon>Waihaha ? ex Lake Taupo now residing on Lake Rotoiti?

UPDATE from Paul Drake

The photo shows her at Taupo in the 1950’s, before she was renamed WAIHAHA, when she was LENA. She ran commercially in those days.
She went from Taupo to Tauranga (Omokoroa) when she was renamed AVALON, because someone told the then owner that she was in fact Zane Grey’s AVALON.
This is clearly not the case. It is good to hear that she has reverted to WAIHAHA. At Taupo she had a Morris Commodore engine. I think she is 32 feet.
I believe that she is Bailey and Lowe, although I cannot remember why I believe that! Perhaps she had a builders plate?

Also in the photo is LAMORNA (Colin Wild 1936) – on her mooring – and LADY PAT at a finger berth. Both well covered in WW.




photo & details ex Paul & Nigel Drake

Lamorna was built in 1937 by Colin Wild for J Blundell & specifically designed for trout fishing on Lake Taupo. The photo above was taken in the 1950’s.

As boys, on the Lake, the 4 Drake brothers admired Lamorna from the family’s C&G 22 footer Sir Francis – which they still use constantly today. Paul Drake recalls his father telling him that Lamorna had twin engines that were fully exposed with a chrome rail on each side of the alleyway their only protection from stumbling bodies.

Lamorna was for sale on trademe for a long time until reasonably recently. She looks very different now, with a new dodger extending forward, and the usual fully enclosed fly-bridge. See photos below ex Nigel, taken of her moored off Herald Island – note,  these do not show the full extent of the fly-bridge.

Below are three great photos from Lamorna’s past. Thanks to Harold Kidd for pointing the Papers Past links  to me 🙂

14 September 1937 – at Colin Wild’s Stanley Bay yard

16 November 1937 – Undergoing sea trials on the Waitemata Harbour prior to being trucked to Lake Taupo

25 November 1937 – being loaded for transport overland to Lake Taupo. Love the truck !

An Update from Steve & Dylan Needham – 18/10/2014

Here are some photos of Lamorna since we took possession of her at Herald
Island Auckland. Starting with survey and then taken to Geoff Bagnal’s yard
to make Lamorna sea worthy for the Cook straight crossing. Transport to Mana
by truck as you can see we had to cut the flying bridge off because of one
bridge. Looked quite good without it but we decided to re-attach it and then
made the voyage to the Marlborourgh Sounds where Lamorna is berthed at
Havelock where we are restoring her. We have had a lot of fun with her and
look forward to summer.