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THE general Geography of New Zealand is too well known to require any thing more than a reference to the results of the survey of those Islands by our celebrated Navigator, Captain Cook. It is however deemed a subject of sufficient importance to the speculating and enterprising portion of British subjects, of the rapidly rising Colonies of Australia, to furnish a detail of the most recent discoveries of its harbours, rivers, lakes, &c. &c. &c. The extensive and beautiful islands of New Zealand are situated between the 34th and 48th degrees of South latitude, and the 166th and 179th degrees of East longitude, and are the nearest antipodes of Great Britain. The nearest land to the Westward is Van Diemen's Land and New Holland; to the Eastward, Chili, in South America; and to the Northward, the Friendly Islands, and the adjacent cluster of islands forming the great Polynesian archipelago.
The extent of New Zealand has been variously estimated. From the North to the South Cape it is about nine hundred miles--the greatest breadth about three hundred miles; and at a distance of about an hundred miles from the North Cape, there is an isthmus of not more than three miles across. By the latest, and it is believed the most accurate
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account, the area of the Northern island is computed at forty thousand English square miles, while that of the Southern island--of which Stewart's island may be considered an appendage--is considerably more than one-third larger. The extent of the two islands are considered to be ninety-five thousand English square miles, or above sixty millions of square acres.
It will be remembered that Captain Cook was prevented, by severe weather, from approaching closer to the Western coast, than from five to eight leagues; and, as very little attention has been subsequently paid to its survey, consequently the information now to be submitted to the public of the harbours, &c. of that part of the Northern island, although partially known, will be, it is presumed, new and worthy of attention by those who contemplate becoming proprietors of land or residents in that country.
Commencing then at the North Cape, or Cape Maria, Van Diemen's, at the distance of about twenty miles, is--
1st.--The open roadstead of Wharo. The anchorage is good, on a firm fast sandy beach, and the supplies from the natives of fresh provision abundant at the proper season, viz. from June to the latter end of April or May, and it may be well to observe that at the period above noted, ships may generally approach and anchor with the greatest safety, as the winds at that season of the year very frequently prevail from the Eastward, consequently we have a smooth sea on the Western coast.
2nd.-- Whangape is a small harbour, about twenty miles to the Southward of Wharo, and about fifteen North of Hokianga. The breadth of the entrance
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is about 200 yards; there is a rock a little to the Northward of mid-channel, visible at low water. The best channel is between this rock and the South Head. I am not aware that soundings have been taken, but as I have often visited the place, and had a favourable view from an elevated situation, and never having seen breakers at the entrance, I conclude there is deep water. The channel, inside, continues about the same width as the entrance for three or four miles; with a chain of mountains on either side, and then expands into a beautiful bay. The shore is bold and iron bound on both sides. This harbour has not been marked on any chart yet published; and as strangers, bound for Hokinnga, have frequently mistaken Whangape for that harbour, it may not be amiss to remark, that in order to avoid this mistake it must be kept iu mind, that the coast to the Southward of Hokianga harbour is bold and iron bound, and that to the Northward consists of a range of moderately high sand-hills, terminating in a range of mountains, extending to the South entrance of Whangape, but the coast on both sides of Whangape harbour is very bold. The natives, in this Bay, cultivate rather extensively, and have possessions and cultivations also at Hokianga, and no doubt if the entrance were better known it would become an interesting and valuable place.
3rd.--Hokianga.--This beautiful harbour is situated on the West Coast of New Zealand, in latitude 35 deg. 32' South, and longitude 173 deg. 27' East, var. 14 deg. 46' East. The information, respecting this beautiful harbour and the adjacent country, and its capabilities for agriculture and commerce, is so well known, that it is scarcely requisite to say much respecting it. It is a bar harbour, however; and
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the Pilot, Mr. John Martin, has a Flag Staff on the South Head, with a code of signals, of which the following is a copy, and if attended to by masters of vessels; they may enter with perfect safety. The following is his notice:--
This is to give notice to all Captains of ships and Vessels, bound to the River ilokianga in New Zealand, that there is a Flag Stall" erected on the South Head, under the directions of Mr. John Martin, the Pilot, with Signal Flags to signalize to any ship or vessel appearing oil' the heads; and the undermentioned Signals are to be attended to. Mr. Martin will be in attendance with his boat, also at the entrance of the Heads
FLAG No. 1 Blue Peter.--Keep to Sea; the bar is not fit to take.
. . No. 2 Red.--Take the bar; there is no danger.
. . No. 3 Blue with a White St. Andrew's Cross. Ebb tide, and the bar not fit to take.
. . No. 4.-- White.--First Quarter flood.
It is necessary when these Flags are shown, that they should be answered from the ship, if understood, by a pendant or flag where best seen. The Flag Staff works on a pivot; and when a vessel is too far to the Southward for entering, the Flag Staff will droop to the Northward. If too far to the Northward; will droop to the Southward. Vessels to be particularly guided by the drooping of the Flag Staff; for whatever way the Flag Staff droops, the ship must keep that direction, and by no means take the bar Until the Flag Staff bears E. 3/4, N. per compass. "Time of high water, full, and change at the bar half-past 9 o'clock; A.M.
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It is necessary however to remark, that a very important change has recently taken place in the entrance of this harbour. The Pilot affirms that the bar has shifted; others are of opinion that this is not the case, but that the best entrance, or the deepest water, has only recently been discovered; be this however as it may, the deepest water in crossing the bar will be found by bringing the South head of the harbour to bear E. by compass--then steer as the Pilot directs. It will, it is presumed, be quite satisfactory, in reply to the repeated questions proposed by Merchants and Captains of ships, relative to the safety with which vessels can enter the port of Hokianga, to state for general information that the ship Cornwall, whose tonnage, per register, is 672 tons, entered that harbour; took a complete cargo consisting of 213 spars suitable for the English market, and went out again with perfect safety. It may not be uninteresting to strangers to be informed, that vessels may find safe anchorage in any part of the river, after passing the South headland, a little distance to the extent of thirty miles. The ground generally occupied by vessels which visit Hokianga for timber is a little below a small island called Motili, which anchorage is about twenty-six miles from the entrance. There are, however} some respectable Merchants not far from the heads, who occasionally load vessels with that article, in which case, the anchorage ground is a little within, or to the Northward Of "One Tree Point." The number of Europeans in this district is about 170, including men, women, and children; the greatest part of whom are engaged in sawing timber and other mercantile pursuits. Very little attention is paid by them to the cultivation of the soil. In general the land on the banks of the river is
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with but few exceptions, all purchased by Europeans. There are numerous fine fresh water streams emptying themselves into the main river, and the greatest portion of the richest and most valuable soil, in the numerous beautiful vallies, is still retained by the natives for purposes of cultivation.
4th.--Kiapara.--The North head of this harbour is in about 36 deg. 37' South, and 173 degrees 27 minutes East; variation of compass 14 degrees 46' East. There are three channels, but the middle is by far the best. It had generally been supposed down to 1836, that there was no channel sufficiently deep to admit a vessel into this magnificent river. This conclusion is now easily accounted for by the ascertained fact, that there are two large sand banks crossing the mouth of the harbour, extending beyond the headland on both sides, overlapping in the middle; and although one of these banks is at least three miles further out to sea than the other, they appear to be one continued shoal quite across. When the entrance is approached from any point of the compass, from the N.W. to the S.W., the distance from one headland to the other is about six miles, and the coast on both sides, with very few exceptions, consist of sand-hills. By attending to the following directions, vessels of any size may go in with the greatest safety; but it ought to be kept in mind that it is not considered safe to go into Kaipara harbour with an ebb tide, without a fair, steady strong breeze.
In sailing into the middle channel there is a a remarkable black patch, a few miles to the Southward of the entrance; on the North head-land there are three black patches, bring the black patch on the South side of the port, to bear E.N.E. by compass; then steer direct for it until the middle black
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patch on the North shore bears N. by E. 1/2 E., steer for it. until clear of the North end of the inner sand bank--then shape your course for the inside point of the North head, off which good and safe anchorage may be found.
About 14 years ago this was a very populous district, and probably would have continued so until now, but for the restless and reckless ambition of the late warrior, Howji. The probable number of natives, in this extensive district, do not amount to more than seven or eight hundred, including men, women, and children. They are very anxious to secure respectable Europeans to settle amongst them, and are willing to sell their land to almost any extent. On the banks of the numerous branches and creeks of Kiapara, there are considerable tracts of land of the very richest quality, admirably adapted for agricultural purposes;-- abounding with various kinds of valuable timber, for ship and house building, &c. At present there are not more than 6 or 7 Europeans, including a Wesleyan Missionary; all of whom live on the Wairoa branch. Vessels of 200 tons may go up the last-mentioned river 70 miles. The first vessel that discovered the entrance into this port was the schooner Fanny, Capt. Wing, on the 6th January, 1830, who in entering the harbour crossed the outer sand-bank, carrying three fathoms at high water, and worked out against a strong Westerly wind, by the middle channel.
Proceeding to the Southward, Manakau is the next harbour; the latitude of the North head of which is in 37 deg. S. The width of the entrance is about one mile. There are two channels, by both of which the author has entered,
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and there is also an extensive bank, stretching a considerable distance out to sea, and which, as in the case of Kaipara, entirely shuts in the two channels when approached from the South-West.---Strangers may distinguish this harbour by observing that the land to the Southward, for about thirty miles, is moderately high, and presents a ridge almost unbroken and straight. The beach also is straight and uninterrupted by any projecting point of land the whole distance between Manakau and Waikato harbour. To the Northward of Manakau, the coast presents an aspect rugged, uneven, and romantic, and is iron bound some considerable distance from the North Head, close to which there is a remarkable rock, called by the natives "Paratutai," and on the South side there is a singular rising ground with a flat or table land on its summit. By attending to the following directions, ships may enter this splendid harbour with perfect safety. In entering by the Northern channel, bring the Table Mount on the South Head to bear E.N.E.; run in until some rocks close to the North headland bears N.N.E.,then steer N.E. half E. up the harbour, in any part of which, for the distance of six or eight miles, good anchorage may be found. In taking the harbour by the channel to the South, steer N. by W., keeping the starboard shore on board till the rocks above referred to, called the "Nine Pins," on the North side bear W.S.W., and then haul up the harbour as before stated. The depth of water in the Northern channel, is five fathoms, and in the Southern seven. In 1836, there was no natives residing on the banks of this river, in consequence of wars which had taken place several years before, between the tribes to the Northward and the Waikato natives, but since an interchange of visits, which took place in 1836, the Waikato natives have returned to this highly valued and very interesting
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district. High water, full and change, about 9 o'clock. There are nine rivers which empty themselves into it. On the banks of these rivers, with their numerous tributary streams, are beautiful and extensive valleys of the richest soil, capable of the production of every description, of European fruits and vegetables. The natives cultivate small patches here and there, with very little preparation of the soil, merely burning away the brush and underwood, and putting in the seed in small holes made with the point of a stick, and it is really astonishing to see the splendid crops of maize, potatoes, and other vegetables produced from so simple a culture, affording the best possible proof of the surprising fertility of the soil. Near the source of some of these rivers, the Cowdy timber is found in the greatest perfection, and in this delightful district are to be met with some of the most sublime and romantic scenery the eye of the admirer of the picturesque beauties of nature need desire--mountains with their snow-clad summits, whose sides are covered with gigantic trees--rivers with their innumerable cataracts and lakes, and rich and beautiful vallies, which may, ere long, be the peaceful and happy abode of a thriving peasantry composed of Europeans and natives. On the river Hokianga, the first of the Wesleyan Mission stations was erected, and is one of the most successful and best conducted that ever emanated from that Christian and patriotic body. In this district may be traced the progress of man from his savage to his civilized state; it is a common sight to see on the Saturday evening, thirty or forty canoes approaching mission station, each manned with from ten to thirty natives, nearly all clad in European costume, and quietly encamping on the beach, to await the approaching Sabbath, and their numbers frequently
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amount to five or six hundred, attending the ordinances of religion, and conducting themselves with the strictest decorum; the change in their habits is not the less surprising. Those natives in the district, who as yet have not embraced Christianity, are generally found in their native costume, the mat or blanket; their provision grounds are cultivated in the most slovenly manner, and exceedingly dirty in habits, and their over-ruling passion is war. While the Christian native is seen betaking himself to those peaceful, useful, and profitable employments, which the wants of civilized life create; you may every day see the Christian native Chief of the highest rank on a saw-pit, with one of his people working at this laborious employment. On the banks of the Widinake, one of the tributaries of the Hokianga, is a small tribe of natives, who have resisted more obstinately than their neighbours the influence of the Missionaries; they have however of late been piqued in a competition in their agriculture with their Christian neighbours, and from their proximity, are daily improving in all their social and domestic habits.
The whole extent of the Hokianga, and the mouths of its tributary rivers, abound in fish; mackarel are taken in the main stream and tideway, in vast numbers; sometimes a long net, made of the native flax, is run across the mouth made fast to stakes previously driven into the beach at low water, and masses of fish are enclosed and killed. Not unfrequently shoals of fish are driven or straggle into the stream, and are intercepted in almost any quantity the natives please to take. They prepare them on hot stones, when they keep for months--they never attempt salting them-- they have also a method of preserving the fish in
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its fresh state--they remove the backbone, and then hang the fish in the sun for twelve or fourteen days, carefully protecting it during this operation from damp; it is then removed to their huts, to be smoke dried for four or five days, when it is fit for use, and will keep for years, and is much superior to red herrings.
Waikato is a river about 25 miles to the Southward of Manuko--it is a bar harbour, but vessels of 200 tons have been in for the purpose of trade, but no survey has yet been obtained of its entrance, &c. Flax, Pork, Maize, and Potatoes, are the principal commodities to be obtained from the natives. This is one of the most remarkable fresh water rivers yet known in New Zealand--it extends, inland, about 180 miles, at least canoes and boats can proceed to that distance from the entrance. The course of this river, from its outlet to the sea, for about 20 miles, is in a North-Easterly direction, gradually bending away to the South-East, about 80 miles from the sea the stream divides, when each branch takes different names; that which bears away to the Eastward, is called Horotiu, the other Waipa; besides these, there are various other divisions, which, if ultimately occupied by Europeans, will be found of great value and importance in conveying the produce to the main stream, and thence to the anchorage for shipment if required. There are on the banks of this river, and its numerous branches, extensive tracts of rich land, admirably adapted for agricultural purposes, and also for grazing cattle and sheep.--It ought however to be stated, that the tides do not extend more than twenty miles from the heads, hence European goods would have to be conveyed against the stream.
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which, although not rapid, will always be attended with inconvenience.
The vegetation is altogether luxuriant. The fern grows from five to eight feet in height--the flax grows to nearly the same gigantic dimensions. An intelligent Englishman states-- "I have walked for an hour through grass pasture, reaching to my knees on the banks of the Waikato--the grass looked coarse but very luxuriant." These navigable rivers, which at the distance of about 20 miles from the coast, divide into two or three separate branches, have already been explored to the distance of about 100 miles, without arriving at the extensive lake from which they are stated by the natives to have their source. Waikato harbour becomes therefore the proper depot for the produce of the fertile countries through which the rivers flow. But the state of the bar at the mouth of Waikato river, at low water, renders the approach difficult and dangerous. It has already, however, been pointed out, that the river called Awaroa, which falls into the Northern side of the Waikato, reaches to within less than a mile of the Monukou harbour, one of the safest of the island. The natives are in the constant practice of dragging their canoes from the one to the other, and from the level character of the intervening country, an improved communication can be opened. In this way Manukou would ultimately become the outlet for the produce of the banks of the several rivers of the Waikato country, and also of the magnificent inland lakes of Rotarura and Taupo; a tract of country including many hundred square miles of the richest territory of the Island. It will also be recollected that the isthmus dividing the Eastern from the Western side
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of the Island, is situated between a bank of the Thames and Manukou, so that the produce of nearly a third of the Northern island may be conveyed by water to the Manukou, and from thence to the Thames, with a land carriage not exceeding three or four miles. Manukou, from its connexion with the Waikato country, and its local advantages, becomes, therefore, one of the most important districts of the Island, either in a military point of view, or for the prevention of war between the native tribes of the Nghopui to the North, and the Waikato to the South, which, at no distant period waged exterminating wars against each other; the occupation of the Manukou isthmus, would separate them and prevent mutual invasion. There is a Church Mission settlement, and several hundreds of Christian Natives, members of the Wesleyan Society, in the district of Waikato.
Waingaroa is a bar harbour, with not more than two fathoms on the bar at low water. The distance along shore from the Waikato is about twenty miles. The channel between the heads may be about half a mile wide; the expanse of the harbour about two miles. There are several deep bays in it. It is not known that any survey exists of this harbour. -- It is thickly wooded on the north, and cultivated in patches on both sides by the natives. It is comparatively populous, there being about six hundred natives who have for years been making urgent applications for British settlers amongst them, as indeed have the whole Waikato people. There are several native teachers settled here, and have been eminently successful in instructing their heathen brethren. There are about five hundred Christian converts; the Wesleyan chapel there, contains about six hundred
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hearers. There is a Wesleyan Missionary resident amongst them, the Rev. J. Wallis.
8th-- Aotea harbour is distant about ten miles from Waingaroa; some very small streams fall into it--the entrance may be three-quarters of a mile broad. The channel is winding, and about two or three miles long; the expanse of the bay from eight to ten miles. It is not wooded at the entrance, but thickly so higher up; the beach is sandy; a good many natives reside in this bay; the principal chiefs, in an interview with the author, in May, 1836, repeated a former earnest application for British settlers. The natives have a number of small farms, perhaps including all, one hundred acres under cultivation.
Kawia harbour is situated about six miles south of Aotea; the entrance between the heads is not more than three-quarters of a mile. It is a bar harbour, but a good clear channel, there is a small bank about mid-channel, with deep water on both sides. The channel is not more than half-a-mile long; several small streams fall into it. There is a very powerful chief resident here, possessing as much influence as any one chief in New Zealand--he is most anxious for British settlers, and has long been so; war has raged for some time between the Waikato and the Taranakee people. Their southern neighbours, a few prisoners who had been starved out of their fort, and who had surrendered as slaves, were brought in while I was there. The Chief, who well knew the determined opposition of the Missionary doctrines to their wars, stated, and repeatedly and publicly pledged himself to give up the war, if Missionaries and Settlers would come amongst them. He complains that no white men come to his coun-
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try, although willing to receive them, and although it is richer and also more populous than the Hokianga district; and he stated, that the Taranka country to the South, which he had conquered and depopulated, was still richer and fitter for cultivation than his own country. He described it as containing vast plains of rich land, and covered with fine pasture for sheep and cattle; but this rests entirely on native testimony, although there is no reason to doubt it. None of the Missionaries or Europeans, so far as is known, have visited it. This part of the Waikato country is extensively and thickly wooded, and small patches of the open country are culivated. --The Natives are numerous, perhaps one thousand in the bay. Many of them are Christians.-- The Chief himself is not a Christian, but his brothers are. There are several Native Teachers from Hokianga settled here; and a large and commodious Chapel has been constructed. The resident Missionary is the Rev. J. Whitilry.
The river Mokau, situated about half-way between Kawia and Mount Egmont, is supposed to be the boundary between the Waikato and Taranakee Tribes. Whether this river, like the others on this side of the Island, forms a harbour or bay at its junction with the sea, is not known. Its situation only was pointed out to the Missionaries from an eminence in the Waikato country. The source, course, and extent of the river are equally unknown; but from the native account of the plains and pastures of this very extensive country, and, from what is already known of the plains and pastures, and extreme fertility of the rest of the Waikato country, there is no reason to question its fertility, and it becomes a matter of great importance to explore it.
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The Taranako district forms the South Western extremity of the Northern Island, and the Northern Head of Cook's Straits. Mount Egmont, one of the loftiest mountains in the Island, is situated in it. It is supposed to extend from the Mokou river on the North to nearly the Wanganui River or Knowsley River, laid down in the maps of Cook's Straits.-- There is a bay laid down in recent charts as Tarankee Bay, within Cook's Straits. It does not appear in Cook's chart. No vessel has been heard of as having entered it. Some well-informed Natives deny, and it is believed correctly, the existence of any such Bay, as is there delineated; nor is there known any safe harbour in that part of the coast.-- Rutherford visited Taranaka with his tribe in one of their wanderings; he says, "the village of Taranaka stands by the sea-side, and the manners and customs of the inhabitants are the same as prevail in other parts of the islands. We remained six weeks, and after a journey homewards of six weeks more, we arrived at East Cape." The shores of Taranaka were also visited by Captain Lambert, in Her Majesty's Ship "Alligator," to obtain restoration Of the survivors of a ship's crew which were wrecked near Mount Egmont. He reached the coast on the 20th of September, 1834, at Moturoa, the Sugar Loaf Islands of Captain Cook, by which the Northern extremity of Cape Egremont is terminated. "They consist," says the journal of an officer recently published, "of a remarkable cluster of high conical rocks, running out to the Westward, of primitive formation, and partly clad in a mantle of luxuriant vegetation, wild flowers in beautiful variety, notwithstanding their exposure to wind and sea." The journal continues, "30th September, running along shore for Wainake, in from seven to ten fathoms water, the appearance of the coast is
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such as sailors designate iron bound boldness and ruggedness, characterising it the whole way from Moturoa to beyond the place of our present destination; the grand outline being that of an extensive cape, the sweep of which is broken by a series of shallow bays, as these are parted from one another by huge promontories. The line of country is so level as almost to run parallel with the water line throughout its entire length, subject to numerous breaks in the solid rocks occasioned by its having been rent and torn in those places where the mountain streams had found themselves channels for the conveyance seaward of Egmont's tributary waters, and along the banks of which they have deposited as they went, a rich alluvial soil, thus affording growth to an endless variety of vegetable productions, which relieve the eye at these several fissures, with the sight of woods and groves, pleasing contrasts to a continuous wall of black and brown rock. At noon, the mountain bore N. by W., and we were distant about five miles from Waimati Pa, off which the water shoals suddenly from five to four and three fathoms, with an uneven rocky bottom.
Knowlesly Bay, as exhibited in some recent charts, has no existence, there is however a river called Whanganui about the same situation, and also two other small rivers between Whanganui and Port Nicholson, but from all the information that has been obtained from intelligent natives and Europeans, that not any of those rivers have depth of water enough at their entrance to admit a vessel of any size excepting boats.
Port Nicholson is one of the most splendid harbours yet known in New Zealand; the entrance is narrow but deep, and vessels of any size may work
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in or out with any wind; it affords safe anchorage and complete shelter for any number of ships. The natives who own this place now live at Chatham's Islands, although it is very probable that the Entry Island or Kapiti tribe, will, in their absence, claim the land as theirs. It is stated by competent judges, that the land in the neighbourhood of Port Nicholson is excellent--abounds with timber, but that there is none of the far-famed Kouri to be found there, nor indeed in any part of New Zealand to the South of lat. 39 deg. 0'. There are two Islands on the N.E. side of Cook's Straits, generally well known to captains and traders from the Colony of New South Wales; the largest of which is known by the native name of Kapiti (Entry Island), the other Marna. There is safe anchorage inside both those Islands, but Kapiti is the general rendezvous for shipping.
From Port Nicholson to Cape Kidnappers very little appears to be known; little therelore can be said respecting it, excepting that the whole line of coast for the distance of 200 miles appears rugged, barren, and forbidding, until you come to Hawke's Bay where the coast presents a more inviting appearance, although still rugged and mountainous, respecting which there appears to be so little known, and from the want of harbours so little frequented, except by small craft for the purposes of trading with the natives. Hawke's Bay, situated about midway along this line of coast, between the 39th and 40th parallel of latitude, appears to have been surveyed and to give from 6 to 24 fathoms water. It appears from its position to be sheltered from the North and North East, but is an open bay and affords no shelter that can be depended on, except the wind blows off the land. Taoneroa, or
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Poverty Bay is about 30 miles North of Hawke's Bay, and is supposed to have been the scene of Rutherford's capture, and subsequent captivity.-- "The Bay," says Rutherford, "is in the form of a half moon, with a sandy beach round it, and at its head a fresh water river, having a bar across its mouth." He mentions also the height of the land, which forms its sides; all these particulars are noted by Captain Cook; the country is extensively wooded. The harbour of Tauranga in the Bay of Plenty, and a few leagues South of Mercury Bay, is resorted to by vessels for the purpose of trading in flax, pork, potatoes, and corn. It is a bar harbour, but safe for vessels of 100 tons burthen. Captain Cook visited this harbour.
Mercury Bay is situated on the Southern and Eastern side of the Peninsula, forming the Southern head of the Bay of Howaki or Thames. It has been surveyed repeatedly at the same time with the Thames. The entrance is very rocky, and it is of difficult ingress and egress. The water is from six to ten fathoms, and shoals in the narrows to four, three, and two. This district of the country is inhabited by the Natiparooa or Nutimaru tribes.
Captain Cook states that, "the best anchorage is in a sandy bay which lies just within the South head, in five and four fathoms. This place is very convenient both for wooding and watering, and in the river there is an immense quantity of oysters and other shell fish; but for a ship that wants to stop for any time, the best and safest place is in the river at the head of the bay. In several parts of the bay great quantities of iron sand are thrown upon the shore, brought down by every little rivulet of fresh water that finds its way from the interior."
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The Thames or Houraki is, the greater part of it, an open roadstead. With a wind at East and N East, vessels of 130 tons, or thereby, have been worked into the narrows where they are sheltered; but with a foul wind there is great difficulty in getting out from the sand and mud banks in the channel. "The entrance," says a recent work, "to the frith of the Thames is rendered dangerous by small rocks; showing themselves a few feet above the surface of the water, and not readily distinguished at night. The Bay of Mahurangi, on the Western side of the frith is deep--has several rivers running into it--is studded with several small islands, and has a fine harbour, named by the natives of the place, Kaihu. This harbour, which is situated at the head of the bay, is protected from all winds and from the sea, and affords a secure anchorage, and is easy of access. The depth of water, to the distance of three miles, is sufficient for every description of ships. The Southern or longest, passage is formed by an island and the main, and is the safest and best, having in it 10 fathoms water.
The Northern or smallest passage is full of rocks; the passage narrow, and has only two-and-a-half fathoms depth of water. The tide flows ten feet at springs, and the time of high water is 10 o'clock, full and change. The several rivers, emptying themselves into the bay of Mahurangi, are navigable only for canoes and boats. A small harbour, fit for ordinary craft, is situated on the Northern side of the Island, forming the bay. From this harbour, across the entrance to a second well-sheltered harbour named Waitemata, is the narrow isthmus separating the bay of the Thames from the port of Manukou on the Western coast.
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Wangari, North of the Thames, is an extensive harbour. It is protected from the North and Northeast by Bramhead. It was surveyed in 1834 by H.M.S. Buffalo. It is formed at the confluence of the river Wangari, with the sea and the soundings inside the bay, which is completely sheltered, vary from six to ten fathoms.
Tutukaka, a safe harbour for small vessels, with deep water and a bold shore.
Wangamuma, a good harbour, which till lately was considered as not having water enough to admit any other vessels but canoes or boats.
Wangarura is a very good harbour, in which the Buffalo, store ship took in a large cargo of spars. As no known survey has been made of the three last-named harbours, little can be said of them here, than merely to mention them as affording sufficient shelter for vessels of considerable burthen in passing along the coast.
The Bay of Islands, so named from the number of rocks with which it is studded, is a remarkably fine and capacious harbour, and affords shelter in all seasons and in all weathers to numbers of vessels. Its width, from head to head, is about eleven miles, affording sufficient room for vessels to beat in. There is deep water close in with the shore; a great number of European and American vessels touch at this harbour for supplies of fresh provisions and vegetables, and there have been at anchor in it at one time, as many as forty vessels, most of them upwards of three hundred tons. This bay has been surveyed with minuteness by two French ships, La Coquille, in 1824, and l'Astrolabe
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in 1830, 2, and 3, "Its anchorages are various, namely, Tepuna, a roadstead on the Northern side of the Bay, opposite the Missionary station of that name, and the native village of Rangihoua. Paroa, a deep bay on the South side of the Bay of Islands, a snug and capacious harbour, affording shelter from all winds, and is the anchorage which the whaling vessels formerly made use of; it has seven or eight fathoms of water. The anchorages now generally used, are the bay of Kororareka and the river Kawakawa. The former is used by vessels wanting a slight refitting, or for procuring water and refreshments. The Kawakawa, when repairs to any extent are necessary, or the re-placing of any of the masts, being more secured, and having the stores near them, from which they procure the greater portion of their supplies, with the exception of provisions. Both these anchorage grounds possess sufficient water for ships of the greatest tonnage. The latitude of Kororareka beach is 35 deg. 15' 45" South longitude, 174 deg. 11' 45" East of Greenwich. High water, about 7h. 30m. full and change of the moon. There fall into this bay the rivers Kidi Kidi; in which, at the distance of about two miles from the mission station, are the magnificent falls of the Wani Wani, or "Waters of the Rainbow;" the Warioa, with its fall; the Manganui, the Pulconda, the Kawakawa, and many minor streams; their banks, and the interior of the country presenting one of the richest soils in the Island, yielding crops where cultivated, of every kind known in the country, in the greatest abundance.
The harbour of Wangaroa, lying 25 miles to the North East true of the Bay of Islands, is,beautiful, romantic, and spacious, capable of containing the
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largest fleet, and affording good anchorage in from five to eleven fathoms, completely sheltered from the sea and all winds. No danger need be apprehended in running in, as there are no hidden obstacles; the shores steep and having sufficient water for any vessel within a few yards of them; and should the wind not be favourable for entering, you may with perfect safety anchor outside the heads, and wait for a slant, or for the sea breeze. In approaching this harbour from the sea, the entrance not being more than two hundred yards across it, is not readily distinguished by a stranger; but its position may be known by the Northernmost Island of the Cavelles, which lies three miles off it. (The Cavelles is a cluster of Islands stretching along the shore from Wangaroa to within four leagues of the Bay of Islands). The harbour has several small creeks and rivers emptying themselves into it, and fresh water may be procured almost any where on both sides. The latitude of a small bay about three miles from the entrance on the Eastern side is 35 deg. 2' South, longitude 173 deg. 42' 45" East of Greenwich; high water, full and change, at 8h. 15m.
North East of Wangaroa, and distant about 20 miles, is the Bay of Odou Odou, or Lauriston Bay, of which a survey has been obtained, from a French manuscript, dated 1769, communicated by M. Dupres. This is called by Capt. Cook, Doubtless Bay. The water shoals progressively and regularly from thirty-five, at the entrance, to five, and one and a-half at the head of the Bay, where there is a fine sandy beach with high land in the back ground. There are several small rivers falling into it.
There only remains to be noticed Sandv Bay.
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situated between the North Cape and Knuckle Point. It is an open bay similar to Wharoa roadstead, situated directly opposite on the other side of the Island. The river Kangannee falls into the head of the bay, and forms a creek of some depth, and the soundings are marked on the chart as varying from 32 to 18; the tide rises 14 feet. The Island is here so narrow that from the Missionary station, Kawa, the breaking of the surf on both beaches can be distinctly heard.
SOUTH ISLAND, STEWART'S ISLAND, &C.
Entering Cook's Straits, from the West, the Southern side of the strait which forms the Northern side of the South Island, presents along the whole extent of the strait a succession of excellent harbours. There is
1. --Blind Bay.
2. ---Admiralty Bay. Both these bays are safe and capacious, and contain several small harbours.
3. --Port Hardy d'Urville's Island, and--
4. --Port Gore, both of which have been surveyed by Her Majesty's ship Alligator in 1834.
5. --Current Basin, connecting Blind Bay and Admiralty Bay, surveyed by the Astrolabe, Captain d'Urville, in 1827.
6. --Queen Charlotte's Sound. The entrance between the heads is about twenty-six miles, and narrows to about ten miles, after running in about
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five miles. It extends inland about thirty miles. There are several Islands, one of them inhabited; there are ten or twelve British settlers, and a good many natives, perhaps 500.
7--Cloudy Bay is about fifteen miles long, and from three to five broad; the land is high on the West side, and there is not much level ground between the high land and the shore. There is much fern, and a considerable quantity of fine timber. There are about thirty British settlers. As many as twenty or thirty whalers have put in together; numbers of the crews of these vessels desert their ships and escape into the interior until their departure, when they generally re-engage in other vessels. The English cultivate wheat, potatoes, onions, &c. They employ natives, who are very willing to labour. The natives are also much employed, chiefly in the boats of whalers, and sometimes, from their steadiness, as second or third mates. Cloudy Bay is reckoned the best fishing station for black whales on these coasts. They come in great numbers into the Bay, and into Cook's Straits; the boats and crews watching about the heads, and the vessels lying inside the Bay. Both sides of the Strait are in the possession of the Kapiti tribe, whose chief settlement, as already stated, is in Entry Island, and on the shores of
8.--Port Nicholson. It is a recent acquisition by them, that is, within the last twenty years. There is much valuable land along the shores of Cook's Straits, and particularly from the Eastern point, or Cape Campbell Southwards, towards Bank's Peninsula. The natives represent it as particularly well adapted, from being rich and level, and abounding in pasture for English husbandry and pasturage. Its vicinity to excellent
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harbours, and its being in the direct track homewards of the Australian traders and whale ships, and the absence of native occupants point it out as an advantageous settlement.
9. --Passing along the East coast Southwards, the next harbour is that called by Captain Cook, Lookers-on Bay. The bay is formed by two fine rivers, which there How into the sea. The bay is formed by two fine rivers which there flow into the sea. The bay is not well sheltered, but is much resorted to for flax. There was a British settlement on the banks of one of the rivers, about fifteen miles inland; but it has been abandoned. One vessel of 120 tons was built at it. There are few natives, and the land round the harbour rises gently from the sea.
10. --Port Pegasus, North of Bank's Peninsula; there are two entrances, one to the North, and the other to the South extremity of an Island which forms a barrier against the sea. The bay runs up a couple of miles, and there are three or four rivers falling into it. There are few natives; the country is in general level, and rises gradually from the shore.
11. --The next harbour is that of Akeroa, a remarkably fine and safe harbour, situated in Banks's Peninsula, on the Eastern side of it, between the 43rd and 44th parallels of latitude. A copy has been obtained of an American survey which places this harbour in latitude 45 deg. 52', the soundings off the heads shoal from forty-five to thirty; between the heads from fifteen to twelve; and in the numerous smaller bays inside the harbour, from seven to five fathoms. This harbour is much frequented by American whaling vessels.
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12.--Perackee, a very good harbour for vessels of moderate tonnage. It is twelve miles to the Southward of Ackeroa; there is a whaling establishment here, belonging to a Dutchman, named Ampleton. The soundings vary in the channel, between the heads, from five to three and a half fathoms.
13.--Port Cooper. This excellent harbour, forty miles to the Southward and Westward of Ackeroa, is capable of containing a great number of vessels; there is frequently as many as sixteen or twenty American and French whaling ships here at a time; the entrance is bold and free from dangers; the depth of water vary from twelve to eight fathoms. Between Port Cooper and Otago, for the distance of 120 miles; there is no indentation of the coast, not as much as a boat harbour, until you arrive at
14.--Whytaiko; which is only a small bar harbour capable of admitting canoes or boats, but much frequented by the natives on account of its neighbourhood to the lake, from which they obtain the green stone, out of which they make their battle axes. This lake overflows its banks at various seasons, and forms extensive lagoons, which are separated from the sea by a narrow strip of sandy beach. The natives cut small canals through this beach, and take great quantities of fish in them when attempting to find their way into the sea.
15.--The next bay is Moracka, which is sheltered from all winds but the South West; there is a fishery here, and the anchorage is right abreast of it, in five fathoms water--this place is surrounded by dense forests of large sized trees. On leaving this place, and bound for Otago, you must run off the
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land for the space of twelve miles, as four miles from Moracka there is a reef of rocks runs out to sea the distance of nine miles--there is a passage inside it for boats. Twenty-five miles from Moracka is
16. --Wico Whyte, an open bay, with a small river of fresh water on the West side. There is a whaling establishment here. Twelve miles S. S. W. from this Bay is
17. --Otago, or Port Oxley, in latitude 45 deg. 43'. It is a bar harbour with three fathoms and a half on the bar at low water; the deepest water is on the larboard side of the entrance--keep close to the shore until you come opposite a large cave in the rocks, where you may either anchor or steer right over for the sheers, and drop your anchor abreast the settlement; there is about twelve Englishmen settled here and two grog shops. In the winter there generally six or eight American vessels lying in the harbour; their crews go out to the heads in their boats to get whales, which are very plentiful. About fourteen miles up this river, there is large beds of coal, of which the natives make not the least possible use. The banks of the river consist of very large savannas of grass, interspersed with forests of fine pine timber. Seventy miles S.W. by W. from Cape Saunders, which is fifteen miles South of Otago, is--
18. --Ticarva, a very good harbour, but of very narrow entrance, there is five fathoms in the channel. The entrance may be known by three small Islands, called the Brothers, which lie off it. Fifty miles from this harbour is the Bluff, an excellent harbour;
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the only danger in the entrance is a small reef which runs off the starboard side--keep the larboard shore aboard, and when past the settlement, you may anchor in any part of the harbour. There is a whaling establishment here, about ten English settlers who have some cattle, and two grog-shops. This port is much frequented by American whaling vessels. In most charts there is a large bay laid down, called in the situation marked on the charts, as Knowlesly Bay. There is a small bar harbour called--
19. --Jacob's River, but which will admit only very small vessels. As the bar is continually changing, no certain marks can be given for running over. But in case a vessel should be forced from her anchors and drift on the bar, by steering for a large grove of trees that is on the starboard side of the river, she will clear the small reef that runs off the entrance.
20. --Fifteen miles to the N.W. of the West Cape, is Port Preservation, one of the finest harbours in New Zealand, but very little known. In coming from the Southward, you may either go inside or outside the small reef that lies off the entrance as the Seal Rock terminates it towards the land, and the Martial Rock towards the sea. There is twenty-two fathoms close to the Seal Rock, and seventy close to the Martial. In coming from the Northward, the entrance may be distinguished by the Martial Rock, which lies off it, and by a small Island called Mutton Bird Island, which lies on the starboard side. Run in boldly; there is twenty-seven fathoms, and no danger when a-breast of the first Island, inside either, steer over to the starboard side, and anchor abreast of the fishery, or you may
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run fifty miles up the sound and anchor where you please. There is no hidden dangers, and lie landlocked. Seven miles from Port Preservation, is--
21 .--Port Chalky. This has been surveyed, and is a very good harbour, but of difficult entrance; it is not much frequented. Nineteen miles to the North of Chalky, is--
22. --Dusky Bay, which contains numbers of excellent harbours, the principal of which is Duck Cove; to sail into which, after making the reef, which is above water, and which you must leave on your starboard hand, steer for the passage between the two large Islands, and when through, haul round on the starboard tack, and steer for a large white rock, which lies off the main, and is very remarkable; and when about three cables lengths from it, drop your kedge, which will hold you, as you will be out of all force of tide. The shores of Stewart's Island, situated off the Southern head of the Island, and separated from it by Fovaux's Straits, forms a series of excellent bays and harbours. Southern Port has been accurately surveyed--the depth of water varies from two to fifteen fathoms.
23. --Port Adventure is another good harbour, but of difficult access. There are thirty or forty British settlers here, and they cultivate the usual crops with success; they have a great many goats. It is he longer an eligible whaling station; they seem to;have deserted it for Cloudy Bay and Cook's Straits. It is encompassed by great numbers of small islands and rocks. After leaving the Bluff, a W. S. W. course will carry you through Foreaurg's Straits clear of every thing. The line of coast, from Dusky Bay Northwards to Cape Fare-
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well, the Western extremity of Cook's Straits, presents in general a bold and rocky shore. It has not been examined with sufficient minuteness to determine whether there are any safe and commodious harbours, but there are many inlets and creeks affording partial safety and shelter. Capt. Cook was obliged to keep well out to sea, while standing along this coast, and inferred that there was a scanty population, from observing fires on one or two occasions. It has recently been visited by several traders, who obtained readily the same supplies of provisions and flax, as at the other harbours. There is a great abundance of flax, in which the inhabitants, who are few and located only around the bays, trade very willingly..