It's a nice view, at the top of the Brynderwyns, heading north.

And every time a motorist enjoys it, they have survived one of Northland's worst twisting, challenging and dangerous roads.

Wet weather adds an extra layer of motoring spice to the route. As does the occasional idiotic motorist parked on the roadside, pinching coins out of Northland's smallest, least spectacular waterfall.

Read more: Brynderwyns bypassed, four lanes Whangarei-Te Hana?


Its saving grace - unlike, say, the Mangamukas - is that it is short. Just as the bile in your stomach begins to rise, it's over.

Now, after an $18 million upgrade, a bypass is being mooted.

A tunnel, the most popular option with many motorists, is too expensive.

A four-lane bypass is being suggested and the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) wants public feedback on this and other options for upgrading SH1.

There are multiple options proposed between Whangarei and Te Hana.
The changes, over 30 years, could save 280 lives.

It will also improve domestic travel and freight - the journey now is an even two hours to the North Shore, and will reduce even more, it's hoped by 15-20 minutes - with these proposals and the so-called holiday highway.

Public feedback is also being sought on options between Whangarei and Port Marsden Highway (SH15). Almost 22km of SH1 will be upgraded to four lanes between Whangarei and Port Marsden Highway (SH15). Construction is planned to start in 2019.

Four lanes through to Te Hana, from Whangarei, would be a godsend for anyone who travels the route, even semi-regularly.

Traffic will also increase as tourism numbers rise. And reducing heavy freight by linking Northport with a national rail network will make the new four-lane highway even safer.

Yes, it is a lovely view at the top of the Brynderwyns, but what a shame bypass construction isn't starting now.

■ Public information sessions are being held at:
Kaiwaka Memorial Hall, from 3pm to 7pm on August 15, Mata Hall, from 3pm to 7pm on August 17 and the i-Site at Whangarei Town Basin from 10am to 2pm on August 19.