Waihao Box

Spent some time at Waihao Box, so called because of a large wooden box that extends through a large and high shingle bank at the end of the Waihao River. This bank prevents the Waihao River reaching the sea. This bank diverts the river so that it runs several kilometres up the coast before ending in the Wainono Lagoon wetlands. There is no permanent mouth to the river.

The box was put in in 1896 as a way of letting flood waters out of the river and stop the surrounding farmland from flooding. It was replaced in 1910 and has had running repairs ever since. The shingle bank can be dangerous as the water permeates through it and the stones tend to act like wet sand. A young boy was killed when the shingle bank started sliding and engulfed him.

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