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Ohinemuri Regional History Journal 34, September 1990

Railway Road and River

Railway Road and River

Queens Head Rock shown in Distance - Old Postcard View 1906.

Queen's Head
Ohinemuri Regional History Journal 34, September 1990
Railway Road and River
The rocky outcrop on the road between Waihi and Waikino showing the profile of Queen Victoria is a well-known landmark in the district. In historical terms she is probably priceless. She has been a landmark in the district long before records were kept or man arrived, and she would have been there long before her namesake ascended the British throne. She would have seen the first Maoris arrive in the area, followed by miners as they walked into the district. Then, with the formation of the road, the packhorses, stage coaches and other traffic. Then the railroad was carved out of the hillside behind her, bringing the steam trains chugging their way through the Karangahake Gorge towards Waihi and then further on. Nowadays all sorts of motorised transport pass round her base.

However visibility of her is now somewhat obscured by a seedling pine tree and travellers passing through would be hard put to get a glimpse of her. Some years ago two members of the Waihi Historical Society went to remove the tree but found it too firmly in the ground and too dangerous to remove without disturbing the cliff face.

As far as is known, there is no record of who dubbed the rock "Queen's Head", but verbal accounts say that a couple of miners in Queen Victoria's day noticed the resemblance to the ruling monarch, and that is what it has been called ever since.