Beyond Westhaven there are manuka moorlands to the left, high bluffs to the right. Suddenly there is a scatter of houses, and you are in Mangarakau. In earlier times there were sawmills and a coal mine but these are gone and the village has shrunk accordingly.
However, life is returning to these distant parts. The thirsty and hungry traveller might once more find sustenance at the local café. A few kilometres on, the wide but shallow Paturau River meets the sea near the base of a high cliff. Tangles of driftwood, a haze in the air and the boom of surf tell you that this is the energetic Tasman Sea and you can expect exhilaration, perhaps some vigorous south-west wind and an empty seascape, apart from the odd trawler, and, more rarely now, a bulk cement-carrier en route to Westport. Near the site of the old hall, on Richards Road, is a plaque commemorating the pioneers of this lonely district.