On Wednesday 29 March, Lawrance Simpson posted a video of himself running Hunua Falls (30m) for a possible first descent. Hunua Falls is on the Wairoa River in the Hunua Ranges, near Auckland. Typically the falls only have a flow of 2-3cumecs but on the descent day the flow peaked at 65cumecs.
Simpson said the falls were “pretty intimidating,” but his 25 years plus experience and multiple scouting visits allowed him to make a considered decision to run the falls. “As far as I’m aware, I believe it’s now the highest waterfall paddled in New Zealand,” Simpson said. Auckland Council has expressed concern, saying “I urge people to think very carefully before they put themselves in danger at this beautiful spot.” Whitewater NZ is hoping to discuss the council’s concerns.