Launches Cruising The Mahurangi River 

Launches Cruising The Mahurangi River 

Many moons ago (2010ish)  when the CYA launch fleet was alive and active, one of the more successful events was a cruise up the Mahurangi Harbour / river to the Warkworth town dock. Very much a follow the leader trip, but we all got there and rafted up for a few hours ashore. Sadly most of the photos from that trip died when the CYA pulled the pin of what was the CYA FORUM, but a few survived (the last two above)

The above photos above from ex Mitchell Hutchings fb ex the Parsonson Family collection c.1980’s reminded me very much of the river trip .

The photo below ex Ken Ricketts dated c.1961 also shows how popular the destination was with launches.

So – woodys once the final dredging of the river is complete, I promise a woodys weekend trip up the river – it will be a doozie 🙂

Photo below of Aoma c.1955 ex K Ricketts



During the week Hugh Gladwell gave me the heads up on a woody project that was nearing completion. The ex navy 3-in-1 whaler, Hauiti, also known as a motor sea-boat, was built at the Naval Dockyard in 1962 out of double diagonal kauri. She has been converted by Peter Thompson (who was the project manager on the Jane Gifford restoration) to a river boat to operate in survey on the Mahurangi River. Hauiti is powered by an Elco electric motor which will run for about 7 hours and is charged by a bank of solar panels on the cabin top with no shore charging. Peter Sewell has designed the propellor.
Hugh commented that the river is now dredged along 3 quarters of its length to a depth of 1.5 metres at low water and they have about a year to go to complete the project. Once complete, the upper basin area  will be a great overnight cruising destination for swallow(ish) vessels. Watch this space for a woodys weekend cruise.

Looking For Santa Sack Fillers

For what seems a very long time (25 years in fact), Rotorua woody – Ronald Wattam has been beavering away pulling together a book on the boat building dynasty  – C.J.and A.J. Collings. Ron is linked via marriage to the family. The book covers the period 1896 > 1967. Yesterday a package arrived with some advance copies –  I am so manic on the work front I haven’t had a chance to read, but at 153 pages its a very extensive collection of photos, data and insights into 70 years of New Zealand maritime history. I have two copies to give away – the question is – approximately how many boats did the Collings & Bell company build?. All close answers will go into the draw for one of two copies. Entry is by email only to closes 9pm 17-12-2021 If you miss the draw – copies are available at $55+p&p, direct from Ronald Watttam at