Our coast-crawl north up the Tutukaka Coast finally topped out at Rawhiti which is actually on the Bay of Islands – being around Cape Brett. We moved there from Bland Bay to wait for the best weather to tackle the walk to Cape Brett. While we waited we did the walk from the road over to Whangamumu Harbour and the site of an old whaling station. This is back on the Tutukaka side of the peninsula that runs out to Cape Brett.
I have finally worked out that ‘whanga’ is Maori for ‘harbour’ which is obvious when you think about it. We’d already visited Whangarei Harbour and Whangaruru Harbour. And now Whangamumu. There was a whaling station there until the early 1940s which originally (and uniquely) used nets to trap the whales.
The DoC signs are not a good look. Apart from often being ambiguous or even misleading, they are often scruffy and old. There is obviously an issue with funding. The other sign is also not a good look. It could be taken to be a protection scheme. There is obviously an issue with bandits. It would be nice if they could sort it so that walkers don’t spend their walk wondering what misfortune might befall their vehicle if they haven’t paid the parking “fee”.
The whaling station site was very interesting; sobering but interesting. There was a lot of information explaining how it all worked and we spent a while absorbing it all. The track back to the head of the harbour is partly below the high-tide level and somehow I’d mucked up the tide times. So we were surprised to find that part almost under water on the way back. We didn’t have to wade – not quite ….