Navigation Menu
  • Author: Nicola Coburn
  • Date Posted: Apr 20, 2021
  • Category:

Kohi te Wai (Mackay’s Bluff

Kohi te Wai was a Ngāti Apa pā (called “Skoi-Tehai” by Dumont d’Urville when he observed it in 1827), kāinga, cultivation area, urupā and important fishing station located near Whakatū (Nelson) on the landward end of Te Taero a Kereopa (the Boulder Bank).


This site is also associated with Kupe. Two of his crew wished to stay in Te Waipounamu, and accompanied by two wāhine, stole a canoe and set off. Kupe pursued them, but they recited karakia which caused the rocks that now form Kohi te Wai to fall from the cliffs at what is now known as Glenduan. This created a barrier and allowed them to escape Kupe’s wrath.


Ngāti Apa inhabitants of Kohi te Wai would observe a nearby maunga (Hororoiangi) to assess pending sea conditions. When bad weather threatened, the peak became enveloped in cloud and sea travel was suspended. Later Kohi te Wai was the site of a battle and later abandoned. The ruins of the pā were observed by James Mackay in 1845.