In 1966 my parents bought at Tangaehe, 1500 acres in six paddocks, one being 700 acres, and one being 500acres. In 1982 my brother Kim and I bought from them, by then there were 24 paddocks and a further 250 acres mostly scrub that our house was built on. We split the farm between us. Karren and I had 12 paddocks, a hay barn and store shed and a nice house.
No yards and no woolshed, we shared Kim’s. There was also no water system to 95% of the farm.
By 1999 we had 88 paddocks greater than 1 ha and a further 10 less than 1ha. We had a woolshed, two sets of yards a very good water system and double the mortgage that we started with! 26 ha of virgin swamp had been drained and partially developed with another 8 ha drained but undeveloped. The development was still far from complete.
In 1990 I bought a neighboring farm at auction (530 Ha), which was farmed as Pinaki Station for 10 years in partnership with Kim and my brother in law Peter Pickering.
In 2000 the Pinaki farm was sold and we bought 227 Ha of it; which again more than doubled our Mortgage. That purchase improved the shape of the farm and gave us some much needed developed and finishing land. Buildings included a large hay barn a house, cottage and woolshed.
In 2006 we leased 240 Ha of what was part of the original Pinaki farm from the person who bought that block from Kim. In 2010 we bought 165Ha of that.
We now have 330+ paddocks on the freehold block. There is a further 40 paddocks fenced with pigtails and poly wire. Most fencing now undertaken is 2 wire electric. We now have 7 sets of yards.
A water ram at the rear of the farm pumps 4 km to 4 tanks at different sites. Water then reticulates to most of the farm, 2km in home direction. 80% of the farm has trough water and approximately a quarter has springs as a backup. In 2003 a diesel pump from a large spring on Pinaki was added as back up to the Ram.
We harvest 400-600 round hay bales and 500-800 Balage per year.
Rushes, ragwort, thistles, willow weed. Rabbits, possums, pigs.
In 2016 our Daughter and son in law leased 400ha of the farm so our labour reduced from 3 employees to just 1.
Chris and Karren. Daphne Aikin joined us in May 2007 and is now Stock Manager.