Hunting for hazards
Land Information New Zealand is commissioning a hydrographic survey of the Bay of Islands.
Tenders are invited for the project which will deliver data to update existing charts. The hydrographic survey will cover the coastline and near shore area of the Bay of Islands, between Russell and Opua.
The area between Russell and Opua is represented as charts compiled from surveys dated 1955 and 1992.
Information in the tender documents says uncharted features, hazardous to surface navigation are not expected, but may exist and depth anomalies may be expected.
The survey will be bounded in the north by a line between Fraser Rock, close west of Tapeka Point and Brampton Bank, and in the south by the eastern extent of the Opua Wharf plan.
The Bay of Islands is a popular boating and cruise liner destination.
During the 2011-12 season, 54 cruise ship visits were made with a total of about 80,000 passengers. This included the Queen Mary with a draught of 10.3 metres.
Four passenger ferries operate between Pahia and Russell with passenger capacities of 40 to 100.
There are two vehicle/passenger ferries, operating between Opua and Okiato.
In November, NRC commissioned a hydrographic survey in the approaches to Russell and the Veronica Channel to delineate the 10m contour and confirm the least depth over charted shoals. The new survey will exclude the area covered by the NRC survey.