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Tararua Tramping Club

Celebrating 100 years of tramping

Tararua History Ōrongorongo Place Name Origins

Compiled by Jeremy Foster -> mailto:jjfoster [snail] xtra [period] co [period] nz.

Revised: 27 April 2020.


The information is laid out in the following style:

Locality Name for example – Baine-iti Hut.
Type of geographical feature for example – Hut.
Definition for example – John (Jack) Alexander Baines (1901 – 1984)
was a tramper in the Ōrongorongos from the 1920s and onwards.
It was built around about 1930. It replaced a earlier hut. It is a private hut but open to the public.
Source of the information for example –
The History Of The Orongorongo Valley And Environs by Joanna Lane–Taylor.
Meaning of the information for example –
Built Heritage Of The Orongorongo Valley by Chris Cochran, Chris Maclean, Allan Sheppard.
Time frame when the name came into existence for example – 1914.

The origin of the names of various topographical features, tracks, huts and other sites of the Ōrongorongo. It excludes street names.

Ōrongorongo is a shortened version of Te Wai O Rongorongo – the waters of Rongorongo. Wai means water. O means of. Rongorongo was the wife of Turi Kaihautu of the canoe Aotea. Rongorongo is a female name. Also Orongo was an ancient deity of Hawaii, where it was known as Orongo. Rongo was the Maori god agriculture, and father of the kumara.

The Ōrongorongo River flows for 32 km southwest in the southern Remutaka Range. The river and its catchments are within the boundaries of the Remutaka Forest Park.

The area for the purposes of this document covers is from the head of the Ōrongorongo River to the mouth where it enters the sea at the Wainuiomata Coast. It covers the east and west side of the river. That is the watershed of the river.

Other documents that relate to the area are:

The huts that are mentioned in the document are the ones administered by the Department of Conservation (DOC). It excludes most of the privately owned huts in the Ōrongorongo Valley.

For more history about the Māori naming and their association with the Ōrongorongo see:

  • A Guide to Rimutaka Forest Park by Bill Sewell.
  • Built Heritage Of The Orongorongo Valley by Chris Cochran, Chris Maclean, Allan Sheppard.
  • The History of the Orongorongo Valley and Environs by Joanna Lane–Taylor.

The Map sources are from various topographical maps as stated in the Bibliography.

See the Bibliography for further sources of information.

Baines Hut Hut
Baine-iti Hut Hut
John (Jack) Alexander Baines (1901 – 1984) was a tramper in the Ōrongorongo from the 1920s and onwards. Baine-iti was built around about 1930. It replaced a earlier hut. It is a private hut belonging to the Baines family but open to the public.
Baines Hut was a Wellington Tramping and Mountainerring Club (WT&MC) Hut located on the south side of Matthews Stream and removed after being flooded by the stream.

Source – Map, The History Of The Orongorongo Valley And Environs by Joanna Lane–Taylor. Information – Built Heritage Of The Orongorongo Valley by Chris Cochran, Chris Maclean, Allan Sheppard. Time Frame – 1920s.

Baker, Mt High Point
Baker Stream Water
Baker Track Track
John Holland Baker (1841 – 1930) was a surveyor and later commissioner of Crown lands.

Source – Map. Information – The History Of The Orongorongo Valley And Environs by Joanna Lane– Taylor. Time Frame – 1900s.

Big Bend Track Track
Geographical term in that there is a big bend in the otherwise straight flowing Ōrongorongo River. The track is also known as the Wet Weather Track. This was named due to the fact that access up or down the Ōrongorongo Valley could be undertaken if the river was in flood.

Source – Map. Information – Internet Dictionary. Time Frame – 1900s.

Big Huia Creek Water
The huia was a native bird with beautiful black and white tail feathers used by the Māori for decoration. It is now extinct.

Source – Map. Information – Wikipedia. Time Frame – 1900s.

Boar Inn Hut Hut
A boar is a tusked Eurasian wild pig from which domestic pigs are descended and inn is a place of accommodation. The hut was built in 1968. It replaced a earlier hut. It was a private hut but it is a DOC hut.

Source – Map, Department Of Conservation. Information – Wikipedia. Time Frame – 1960s.

Boulder Creek Water
Boulder Creek, North Water
Geological term in that there is large rocks, typically one that has been worn smooth by erosion.

Source – Map. Information – Internet Dictionary. Time Frame – 1900s.

Browns Stream Water
Browns Track Track
There are two contenders for this name. There is a Bob Brown who had a hut in the in the Browns Stream area about 1914 of which very little is known about. A more likely contender is Thomas Watson Brown (1878 – 1947) who was a tramper in the Ōrongorongo Valley in the early 20th century.

Source – Map. Information – Built Heritage Of The Orongorongo Valley by Chris Cochran, Chris Maclean, Allan Sheppard. Time Frame – 1914.

Cattle Ridge Track Track
Livestock that is domesticated for meat or milk. There used to be wild cattle in the area where the Cattle Ridge Track is. They escaped from farms in the Wainuiomata Valley and entered the Ōrongorongo Valley area.

Source – Map. Information – Internet Dictionary. Time Frame – 1900s.

Dicks Hut Hut
Dicks Stream Stream
David Richard (Dick) Wootton (1893 – 1974) was a employee at the Ōrongorongo Station. The hut was in existence from the 1920s to the 1960s. It was a private hut owned by the Ōrongorongo Station.

Source – Map. Information – Wainuiomata These Passing Years by J. M. and B. M. Kenneally. Time Frame – 1920s.

Goat Stream Water
The goat is a surefit animal so it is steep and suitable for them.

Source – Map. Information – Internet Dictionary. Time Frame – 1900s.

Greens Stream Water
The surrounds of the stream is green. It is not named after Neil Ronald Green (1939 – 2012), who was associated with DSIR (Department of Scientific and Industrial Research) Landcare Research from the 1960s onwards as the name originated pre 1940s. Another name associated with Greens Stream is W. N. Green (? - ?), who was another person to do with DSIR Landcare Research. This again is a post 1940s person.

Source – Map. Information – Internet Dictionary. Time Frame – 1930s.

Haurangi Hut Hut
A wind sky. Hau means wind. Rangi means sky. It can also mean drunk, intoxicated. The hut was built in 2010. It replaced a earlier hut. It is a DOC hut.

Source – Map, Department Of Conservation. Information – Māori Dictionary. Time Frame – 2010.

Jacobs Ladder Geographic Feature
A Biblical term of ascending or descending a steep path. Also a nautical term used to have ladders between two points.

Source – Map. Information – Internet Dictionary. Time Frame – 1900s.

Jaggers Track Track
Arnold Peter Jagger (1926 – 2010) was a tramper in the Ōrongorongo and Remutakas and other areas. He traversed many ridgelines marking tracks with his markers.

Source – Tararua Tramping Club Trip Reports. Information – Tararua Tramping Club Trip Reports. Time Frame – 1960s.

Jans Hut Hut
The origin of this name is not known. It is possible that it was named after a Dutchman. It came under Department of Conservation control in 1974. It was built in the 1950s. It is a DOC hut.

Source – Map, Department Of Conservation. Information – Built Heritage Of The Orongorongo Valley by Chris Cochran, Chris Maclean, Allan Sheppard. Time Frame – 1950s.

Little Huia Creek Water
The huia was a native bird with beautiful black and white tail feathers used by the Māori for decoration. It is now extinct.

Source – Map. Information – Wikipedia. Time Frame – 1900s.

Little Tunnel Tunnel
Small tunnel alongside the Ōrongorongo River built at the same time as the Semples Tunnel from Wainuiomata to the Ōrongorongo.

Source – Greater Wellington Regional Council. Information – Internet Search. Time Frame – 1920s.

Macs Hut Hut
Samuel George McIntosh (1895 - 1965) was a tramper in the Ōrongorongo from the 1920s. The hut was built in 1973 and replaced a earlier hut that was built by Sam McIntosh and William Henry Gibbs (1904 – 1996). It was a private hut but it is now a DOC hut.

Source – Map, Department Of Conservation. Information – Built Heritage Of The Orongorongo Valley by Chris Cochran, Chris Maclean, Allan Sheppard. Time Frame – 1920s.

Manuka Flats Vegetation
A flowering native tree that has aromatic, prickly leaves and many small, white, pink or red flowers.

Source – Wainuiomata These Passing Years by J. M. and B. M. Kenneally. Information – Māori Dictionary. Time Frame – 1900s.

Matai Stream Water
A tall native tree that has small, narrow leaves arranged in two rows, hammer–marked trunk and pale timber.

Source – Map. Information – Māori Dictionary. Time Frame – 1900s.

Matthews Stream Water
Matthews Track, Mt, Track
Charles Matthews (1811 – 1892) was a 19th century settler first at Wharepapa and later at Wairongomai in the Wairarapa. It is the highest point in the Remutaka Range at 940 metres. The Māori name for this is not known.

Source – Map. Information – Internet Search. Time Frame – 1850s.

McKerrow, Mt Water
McKerrow Track, Mt Track
James McKerrow (1834 - 1919) was a Surveyor General of New Zealand.

Source – Map. Information – Wikipedia. Time Frame – 1880s.

Nettle Stream Water
A herbaceous plant which has jagged leaves covered with stinging hairs.

Source – Map. Information – Internet Dictionary. Time Frame – 1900s.

Oaks Hut Hut
A large tree which bears acorns and typically has lobed deciduous leaves. Oaks are dominant in many north temperate forests and are an important source of durable timber used in building, furniture, and (formerly) ships. The hut was in existence from the 1940s to 2011. It was a private hut but it became a DOC hut.

Source – Department Of Conservation. Information – Built Heritage Of The Orongorongo Valley by Chris Cochran, Chris Maclean, Allan Sheppard. Time Frame – 1940s.

Orongoronga Personal Name
Ōrongorongo Personal Name
Ōrongorongo Lodge / Station House / Farm
Ōrongorongo River Water
Ōrongorongo Track Track
It is a shortened version of Te Wai O Rongorongo. The waters of Rongorongo. Te means the. Wai means water. O means of. Rongorongo was the wife of Turi Kaihautu of the canoe Aotea. Rongorongo is a female name. Also Orongo was an ancient deity of Hawaii, where it was known as Orongo. Rongo was the Maori god agriculture, and father of the kumara. The Ōrongorongo River was also known as Riddifords Creek. The Ōrongorongo Lodge / Station has also been known as Riddifords Station.

Source – Map. Information – Built Heritage Of The Orongorongo Valley by Chris Cochran, Chris Maclean, Allan Sheppard. Time Frame – 1800s.

Pack Track Track
A track that was cut so that supplies could be tracked in to build the Ōrongorongo Water Intake. It ran up George Stream in Wainuiomata, then over the range into Little Huia Creek in the Ōrongorongo River Valley area. The track is also known as Semples Track.

Source – Map. Information – Our Water History On Tap by John Morrison. Time Frame – 1920s.

Papatahi Crossing Track
Papatahi Hut Hut
A flat area. Papa means flat. Tahi means area. The hut was built in 2010. It replaced a earlier hut called Shamrock which was a private hut. It is a DOC hut.

Source – Department Of Conservation, Map. Information – Māori Dictionary. Time Frame – 1960s.

Parks, Mt High Point
The origin of this name is not known.

Source – Map. Information – ??. Time Frame – 1882.

Paua Ridge Ridge
A paua is a edible shell fish. There is a hut in the area called Paua which was built by the employees of the Shell Oil organisation in the 1930s. It was named after a company barge.

Source – Map. Information – Māori Dictionary. Time Frame – 1930s.

Peak Stream Water
Geographical term in that it is a pointed top.

Source – Map. Information – Internet Dictionary. Time Frame – 1882.

Puketaha Creek Water
Puketaha, Mt High Point
A hill side. Puke means hill. Taha means side.

Source – Map. Information – Māori Place Names Dictionary. Time Frame – 1880s.

Raukawa Hut Hut
The leaves of the kawakawa. It is a small native tree or shrub with medicinal properties. Such leaves were worn by chiefs in mourning, and gave their name to the Raukawa tribe. Te Moana o Raukawa is one of the Maori names for Cook Strait. The raukawa is also an aromatic plant. The hut was built in 1978. It is a DOC hut.

Source – Department Of Conservation. Information – Māori Dictionary. Time Frame – 1978.

Red Rocks Stream Water
Geological term in that the rocks are red argillite which is a sedimentary rock that does not split easily, and is formed from consolidated clay.

Source – Map. Information – Internet Dictionary. Time Frame – 1900s.

Richmond, Mt High Point
The origin of the name is unknown. However it could have been named for the following Richmond as stated in Valley And Bays – Origins Of Street Names in Lower Hutt, including Eastbourne, Petone and Wainuiomata by Alison Carey. It is near Mt McKerrow.

Source – Map. Information – ?? Time Frame – 1882.

Riddifords Creek Water
Daniel Riddiford (1814 – 1875) was a 19th century settler at the mouth of the Ōrongorongo River. He was also an emigration agent for the New Zealand company. It is now known as the Ōrongorongo River.

Source – Map. Information – Land Barons of Wainuiomata by Gavin Wallace. Time Frame – 1840s.

Ryans Creek Water
Daniel Frank Ryan (1883 – 1935) was a employee of the Wellington Water Board who at one time lived in the house at the Ōrongorongo intake. His wife Florence Jane Ryan nee Soan (1887 – 1972) had issues over the isolation of the area.

Source – Our Water History On Tap by John Morrison. Information – Our Water History On Tap by John Morrison. Time Frame – 1920s.

Saddle - North and South Geographic Feature
Geographical term in that there is a low point on a ridge between two points.

Source – Map. Information – Internet Dictionary. Time Frame – 1900s.

Semples Track Track
Semples Tunnel Tunnel
Robert Semple (1873 - 1955) was the manager of the cooperative labour scheme that built the water supply tunnel from Wainuiomata to the Ōrongorongo in the 1920s. He was also a labour unionist and a member of parliament. The track is also known as Pack Track.

Source – Our Water History On Tap by John Morrison. Information – Internet Search. Time Frame – 1920s.

Sledge Track Track
Where wooden sledges, pulled by bollocks were used to transport materials to the Radar Station that was in the Mt Waimarara area.

Source – Map. Information – Internet Dictionary. Time Frame – 1940s.

Telephone Creek Water
A telephone is a telecommunications device the permits two or more users to communicate. It was named after the telephone that was put through to connect the Ōrongorongo and Wainuiomata ends of the tunnel.

Source – Map. Information – Internet Dictionary. Time Frame – 1920s.

Te Papanui A Henga Settlement
The big large flat land of food. It was also the site of a Māori fishing place at the mouth of the Ōrongorongo River area. Te means the. Papa means flat area. Nui means large. A means of. Henga means food.

Source – The Great Harbour Of Tara by G. Leslie Adkin. Information – The Great Harbour Of Tara by G. Leslie Adkin. Time Frame – 1800s.

Turere Lodge Hut
Turere Stream Water
To steal away, flee. The bridge over the stream was built in 1990 and is dedicated to the people who have died in the Ōrongorongo. The hut was built in 2011. It replaced a earlier hut called Bure Labasa which was a private hut. It is a DOC hut.

Source – Department Of Conservation. Information – Māori Dictionary. Time Frame – 1880s.

Waengapu, Mt High Point
The middle, central, among, midst, amid, between, the intervening space.

Source – Map. Information – Māori Dictionary. Time Frame – 1800s.

Waerenga Hut Hut
A clearing, that is an area of land within a wood or forest devoid of trees. It was named by James Cowan (1870 – 1943) who was a Tararua Tramping Club member in the 1930s. The hut built in 1961. It replaced a earlier hut. It is a private hut owned by the Tararua Tramping Club.

Source – Department Of Conservation. Information – Māori Dictionary, TTC website. Time Frame – 1920s.

Wai Whare Hut
Hut by the waters. Wai means water. Whare meaning hut. The hut was built in 1954. It replaced a earlier hut. It was a private hut but it is now a DOC hut.

Source – Department Of Conservation. Information – Māori Dictionary. Time Frame – 1920s.

Waimarara Stream Water
Moon over shinning water. There are various interpretations of Waimarama which are – moon over shinning water, clear water, name given to a fresh water spring and the sight of the full moon rising from the sea on a clear summer’s evening. It is an ancient name. Topographical maps prior to the 1990s had Waimarara Stream on the west side, that is the Wellington side of Mt Waimarara. After 1990 Waimarara Stream was on the east side, that is the Wairarapa side of Mt Waimarara. Wai means water. Marama means moon, light or enlighten.

Source – Map. Information – Māori Place Names Dictionary. Time Frame – 1800s.

Whakanui Creek Water
Whakanui Track Track
Whakanui Track (East) Track
Towards in the direction where there is big decision to be made. That is should you go up the hill over the ranges or continue up the valley. Whaka means towards in the direction. Nui means big.

Source – Map. Information – Māori Place Names Dictionary. Time Frame – 1800s.

Wootton Stream Water
David Richard (Dick) Wootton (1893 – 1974) was a employee at the Ōrongorongo Station.

Source – Map. Information – Wainuiomata These Passing Years by J. M. and B. M. Kenneally. Time Frame – 1920s.

Bibliography

Maps

  • A Guide To Rimutaka And Haurangi State Forest Parks 274/4 Edition 1 1984.
  • Hutt N160 1943.
  • Hutt N160 3rd Edition 1965.
  • Hutt N160 4th Edition 1977.
  • Lake Wairarapa BQ33 Edition 1 2015.
  • Lake Wairarapa S27 Edition 1 1980.
  • Lower Hutt BQ32 Edition 1 2017.
  • Onoke N165 3rd Edition 1973.
  • Park Map Rimutaka And Haurangi 274–02 Edition 2 1989.
  • Rimutaka N161 2nd Edition 1968.
  • Rimutaka N161 3rd Edition 1974.
  • Turakirae R28 Edition 1 1978.
  • Wellington BQ31 Edition 2 2016.
  • Wellington N164 2nd Edition 1962.
  • Wellington N164 3rd Edition 1967.
  • Wellington N164 4th Edition 1974.
  • Wellington R27 1st Edition 1979.
  • Wellington R27 and part Q27 2nd Edition 1983.
  • Wellington R27, R28 and part Q27 2006.
  • Wellington R27, R28 and part Q27 3rd Edition 1996.

Surveyor Field Books from Land Information New Zealand.

Other Sources

Birth and Deaths dates have been obtained from:

  • Birth, Death and Marriage Indexes from New Zealand, England and Ireland.
  • Other genealogy sources such as Ancestry and Find My Past.
Other:
  • Department of Conservation (DOC) website.
  • Greater Wellington Regional Council website.
  • Internet Dictionary.
  • Internet Searches.
  • Maps Past New Zealand website.
  • New Zealand Electoral Rolls from the 1860s to present.
  • Papers Past Website.
  • Tararua Tramping Club Trip reports and website.
  • Wikipedia.

Books

  • Adkin, G. Leslie. The Great Harbour of Tara.
  • Barnett, Shaun and Maclean, Chris. 100 Years of the Tararua Tramping Club.
  • Barnett, Shaun and Maclean, Chris. Tramping - A New Zealand History.
  • Best, Elsdon. The land of Tara and they who settled it.
  • Carey, Alison. Valley And Bays – Origins of Street Names in Lower Hutt, including Eastbourne, Petone and Wainuiomata.
  • Cochran, Chris and Maclean, Chris and Sheppard, Allan. Built Heritage of the Orongorongo Valley.
  • Greig, B. D. A. Tararua Story – Tararua Tramping Club.
  • Kenneally, J. M. and B. M. Wainuiomata These Passing Years.
  • Kerr, Ross. A Chronology of the Tararua and Rimutaka Ranges – 6th Edition.
  • Lane-Taylor, Joanne. The History of the Orongorongo Valley and Environs.
  • Maclean, Chris. Tararua – The Story of a Mountain Range.
  • Morrison, John. Our Water History on Tap.
  • Morrison, Sally. History of Water Supply in the Wellington Region 1872 - 1985.
  • Reed, A.W. A Dictionary of Maori Place Names.
  • Sewell, Bill. A Guide to Rimutaka Forest Park.
  • Wallace, Gavin. The Land Barons of Wainuiomata.
Category
Orongorongo Glossary

Page last modified on 2020 Apr 26 22:16

Edit - History - Recent changes - Wiki help - Search     About TTC     Contact us     About the website     Site map     email page as link -> mailto:?Subject=TTC: Orongorongo Place Name Origins&Body=From the TTC website: Orongorongo Place Name Origins (https://ttc [period] org [period] nz/pmwiki/pmwiki [period] php/TararuaHistory/OrongorongoPlaceNameOrigins) The origin of the names of various topographical features of the Ōrongorongo Ranges.