Te Urewera National Park
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|Te Urewera National Park|
|Nearest city||Gisborne, New Zealand|
|Governing body||Department of Conservation|
Te Urewera National Park was one of 14 national parks within New Zealand and was the largest of the four in the North Island. Covering an area of approximately 2,127 km², it was in Te Urewera, in the north of the Hawke's Bay region of the North Island.
On 28 July 1954, the catchment areas of Lake Waikaremoana, Lake Waikareiti and other Crown reserves were gazetted as a national park, and by 1957 proposals were well underway to add the rest of the Crown land in Te Urewera north of Ruatahuna. This proposal was formalised in November 1957 when an additional 1,350 km² were added. Further additions were made in 1962, 1975 and 1979, with smaller acquisitions and boundary alterations in the intervening period.
Te Urewera is the traditional home of the Tuhoe people. Due to its geographical isolation, it was one of the last regions to be claimed by the British during colonisation in the 19th century. Te Kooti, the Māori leader, found refuge there from his pursuers among Tuhoe, with whom he formed an alliance.
In March 2013, Tuhoe signed a deed of settlement, settling the tribe's claims at the Waitangi Tribunal. Under the deal, Tuhoe will get $170 million and more control over Te Urewera. Te Urewera ceased to be a national park under the Te Urewera–Tūhoe Act in 2014. The area is now administered by the Te Urewera Board which comprises joint Tūhoe and Crown membership. It is still open to the public and the Department of Conservation will continue to work in Te Urewera and maintain the tracks and facilities in conjunction with the Board.
- Charles Rawlings-Way, Carolyn Bain, Brett Atkinson, Errol Hunt, Peter Dragicevich and Sarah Bennett. 2008. New Zealand, Lonely Planet Publications, Edition 14, ISBN 1-74104-816-8 756 pages