On 18 January 2017, our Hapū of Maungaharuru – Tangitū will gift Boundary Stream Scenic Reserve and Bellbird Bush Scenic Reserve to the people of Aotearoa, New Zealand.
For Ngāti Kurumōkihi, the Boundary Stream and Bellbird Bush Scenic Reserves and environs are integral to the distinct identity and mana of our Hapū. The importance of the Reserves derives from their position high along the eastern slopes of the Maungaharuru Range. Maungaharuru is the iconic, most sacred and spiritual maunga (mountain) of our Hapū.
The paramount status of Maungaharuru is recognised by our Hapū in mihi (greetings), whaikōrero (formal speeches), whakairo (carvings), kōwhaiwhai (painted panels) and tukutuku (woven panels) on our marae, whakatauākī (tribal proverbs), kōrero tuku iho (Hapū history) and waiata (songs).
Oral tradition recounts the migration of the waka Tākitimu southwards, and a tohunga (high priest) of the waka, Tūpai, who cast the staff Papauma high into the air. Papauma took flight and landed on the maunga at the summit of Tītī-a-Okura, at a place called Tauwhare Papauma. Papauma embodied the mauri of birdlife. The maunga rumbled and roared on receiving this most sacred of taonga (treasures), and the maunga was proliferated with birdlife. Hence the name, Maungaharuru (the mountain that rumbled and roared). It is also said that the mountain roared every morning and evening as the many birds took flight and returned again to the maunga.
Boundary Stream and Bellbird Bush Reserves are within the Ahu-o-te-Atua and Tarapōnui-a-Kawhea areas of Maungaharuru. Oral tradition describes Ahu-o-te-Atua (sacred mound of the Gods) as an altar where tohunga gathered to carry out their spiritual ceremonies.