The word Akarana is Maori for the area around Auckland in the North Island of New Zealand.
No overseas ship entered or left Auckland without a Pilot on board and the “Akarana” was the main pilot boat from 1961, the year she was built untill 1994 when she retired to become privately owned.
During her years of service she averaged in mileage the equivalent of twice round the world in a years service and would quite often clock up nineteen and a half hours running in the enginroom log book for a days work.
The “Akarana” was a wooden vessel of sixty three feet in length and had a service speed of eleven and a half knots with a single motor. Over the years she had a V6 Paxsman followed by two Catepillers 360 hp detuned to 280 hp.
My service aboard the “Akarana” as Skipper covered over twenty years. The crew consisted of Skipper, Engineer and a Deckhand.