Our Beautiful Pohangina Valley
The Pohangina Valley, named after the river that flows through it, is about 50 Kilometers (30 Miles) long, and has been for a long time a beef and sheep area. In later years, deer have become more prominent, with several major farm blocks given over to it. Dairying has always been here, although not as prominent now as sheep and beef. There are very few areas of land that are cropped until you are south of near Raumai. There is now a small area of wine growing.
The Pohangina Valley Newsletter can be found in .pdf format here (opens new window)
Within the valley, you will find the settlement areas of Raumai, Pohangina, Awahou South, Awahou North, Komako, Utuwai, Mount Richards, Umutoi. From Utuwai, you progress north to Apiti and The Sixtus Lodge, and on toward Marton Block, Rangiwahia and finally Mangaweka and Taihape. This is a great scenic drive through the valley, especially when the autumn colours are at their best, with some very popular areas for picnicing.
Please remember that this is a rural district - you never know when livestock or large agricultural equipment will be being moved along the road ways. There are lots of tight turns and blind corners that can create hazards for unwary drivers. Cyclists use this area a lot too, sometimes in large groups. Walking and hiking tracks are scattered throughout the valley, some linking into the Ruahine SFP.
The main gateway to the valley is through Ashhurst to the south, with other entry points from Rangiwahia in the north, Kimbolton and Feilding to the west.
Pohangina township, on the western side on the Pohangina River, once a thriving community, had declined steadily over the years. Now it is regaining residents, as a retirement and lifestyle area. Whole areas of the valley now have small "lifestyle" blocks on them - people "escaping" the cities. Post offices used to be dotted all up the valley - up to 10 of them. There were stores, pubs, golf courses, creameries and several schools.
The only Schools in the valley now are the Utuwai school at the top of the valley on the western side and the Awahou School at Awahou North on the eastern side, that merged with the Komako and Awahou South schools in the early 1970's. Information about Awahou school can be found here.
The only church on the eastern side of the valley is the Komako Anglican church, and the only one on the western side of the valley is the Pohangina Community Church (image below).
In February 2004, the region was devastated by heavy rains and the subsequent flooding and considerable damage to the land. Some places had not recovered from earlier floods. Some areas of farm land may never fully recover. A selection of pictures from the area in the following days, are posted here. The Totora Reserve picnic area and camping ground was flooded again in July 2007.
Things, Places and People
Picnic and Native Bush area with walking tracks
Camp Rangi Woods
Camping grounds and Picnic area
Gary Lawford Martin Photographer - website
Konewa Cottage B&B - website
Working settlers Museum and Wildlife Park - website facebook
Raumai Picnic Reserve
Pohangina Methodist Church
below : The Pohangina River at Raumai. Fonterra milk tanker