Northland Axemen's Association Inc

Our AGM is this Sunday the 14th April at 11am. Parish Hall 2B Kamo Rd Whangarei. Please bring a plate.

Welcome to the Northland Axemen’s Association, the home of woodchopping in Northland NZ.

Woodchopping is the original extreme sport.

In America they call it lumberjacking. In the UK they talk about axe racing or log axing. ESPN call it Timbersports but here in NZ and Australia where it all began we call it what it is – woodchopping.

 Woodchopping is a great sport to be involved in and a lot safer than you might think! It is suitable for people of all ages and abilities and both men and women can compete. We have people located across the region so get in touch if you’d like to know more about us or to have a go!

Three well-deserving and proud Northlanders have been recognised in the Queen's New Year's Honours list.
Champion wood chopper Jason Wynyard was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit (MNZM) for services to his sport.
Kerikeri sailor and Olympic gold medallist Blair Tuke was also made an MNZM for services to sailing.
And Whangarei accountant Wally Yovich received a Queen's Service Medal for services to the community.

Jason Wynyard has won more than 230 world championships and is unparalleled in wood chopping but he reckons being recognised in the Queen's New Year's Honours list is right up there, and even more important for his sport.

Wynyard - Northland's greatest world title winner - has been made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit (MNZM) for services to the sport of wood chopping.

He started wood chopping aged just six, encouraged by his late father Pae - himself an accomplished axeman - and turned professional in 1996.

In November, Wynyard was crowned the best individual wood chopper in the world for the eighth time and, despite all the world titles, he says his MNZM is the most humbling occasion and a huge honour for him, but especially his sport.

"I'm really proud of it. It's not something you expect when you start out or can train for - and you don't do this for those honours - but it's a tremendous recognition for my sport and all the people who are involved in it and who have supported me all the way," Wynyard said.

"It's as much for all those people and my family - I couldn't do this without them all - and I'm really humbled by it. I really hope it rekindles interest in wood chopping in the north. There can't be many wood choppers who have been honoured like this."

The Northern Advocate caught up with Wynyard on the way back from a holiday in Coromandel as he was heading back north to compete in the Opononi Axemen's Carnival on New Year's Day. "I love competing there. It's a great wood chopping carnival and such a beautiful place. It's a great way to start the new year too."

Multiple world champion wood chopper and new Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit (MNZM) Jason Wynyard in action on his home marae, Karetu, in the Bay of Islands. PHOTO/FILE

Wynyard said when he started out there were six or seven wood chopping carnivals in Northland over Christmas/New Year, but that was now down to two, so he hoped his accolade would spark more interest.

It's been a difficult last few months for Wynyard and his wife Karmyn. His father Pae died in August and Karmyn's mum Sue Lane died earlier this month.

"It's been really hard. Those two wonderful people were really supportive and influential to me and they would be proud to see me receive this honour," he said.

"Dad was never big on words, but he would be so proud. He was the one who got me started in wood chopping, and was pretty good at it himself, and he instilled in me good values and that work ethic."

Wynyard wanted to also give special thanks to late Northern Advocate sports editor Gary Frew and the newspaper.

"Gary Frew and the Northern Advocate were so supportive of me throughout and right from the very start Mr Frew followed me and the sport and gave it tremendous coverage."

Wynyard is also the father of young Kiwi basketballer Tai Wynyard who has a scholarship with Kentucky University in the US.

- Northern Advocate

Kauri Museum presents

Axemen Legends of Northland

Over the past century, Northland has produced many axemen and sawyers of stature. Names such as Mick Griffen, Joe Julian, Dinny Hoey, Pero Smith, Bill Shelford and Innes Davidson have joined the ranks of New Zealand's legendary sporting greats, and Northland axemen continue to excel. Featuring highlights from video interviews recorded with a selection of contemporary Northland axemen,

Read and learn more here

Kauri Museum

Open daily 9.00AM to 5.00PM
Closed Christmas Day
+64 9 431 7417

5 Church Road, RD1
Matakohe 0593, Northland

Trophy winners @ Broadwood Feb 15 Bevan Gubb winner Bill Shelford Memorial Harding Leef winner Huri Hauraki Memorial underhand Trevor Laing winner Joe Julian Memorial Standing.


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