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Kaihoka Lakes – Golden Bay

Sand dune lakes, nestled among sheep paddocks, tucked away from the wind by Nikau forest. Kaihoka Lakes are out west of Golden Bay, on a dead end road on the way to three farms – the Fergusons, Millers, and Wylies. The latter whose land one must cross to get to the coast, and wild Kaihoka beach.

Walk around the track to the second lake. Climb the hill, then run down the steep dune to the beach. Nikau poke out of pure sand, sheep hollows erode the bank. I climbed Mt Luna, the prominent bluff to the north. An ugly road cuts along the top, dense scrub hiding deep limestone guts and hidden caves. Mobs of cattle and sheep trot through sedge, manuka and gorse. Its a tragedy such wild country has been converted to farm, but allows fantastic views over the Tasman Sea, and inland across Whanganui Inlet.

Mt Luna, or Mount Misery, is an uplifted limestone bluff. I walked barefoot through gorse and cowshit to the end, overlooking Miller’s farm and their private beach, Nguroa. A private paradise with blowholes, arched island and superb views along the coast to Wharariki. Its a hard life, farming sheep on sandy soil, in wild westerlies. Recently Peter rescued his top-dressing pilot from an aircraft wreck. I have happy memories of wading through the hay paddock, hooning on motorbikes, working in the shearing shed, gathering hay.

Walk south, to the North Head of Westhaven. Sheep and goats cling to the cliff faces, while waves crash below. Climb a wild hilltop to watch the sunset. Kaihoka Lakes is one of the most magical places in Golden Bay.



Comment from daan dehn
Time: February 9, 2011, 4:28 pm

Great site, tristan!! Thanks heaps. OBTW, I believe it is Mt Lunar. Mt Luna is due east of Little Wanganui near the Karamea River.

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