Sheree Wagener is one of many who will long remember Marion Andrew and Pauline Ogilvy, who were fatally injured in a two-car crash on Houhora Heads Rd on Tuesday last week.
She posted a 2016 photo of the "two old girls" at a Pink Ribbon breakfast at Raio Hall on Facebook, saying Andrew was taking a break from laughing all morning while Ogilvy held the room's attention with her "big beautiful personality".
"These tight-knit old girls had seemed unbreakable," she said, and losing them had left a huge hole.
Chilean national Dante Felipe Basaez Vera, 28, appeared before Judge Deidre Orchard in the Kaitaia District Court on Monday where he denied two charges of careless driving causing death and one of careless driving causing injury.
Betsy Young described the two women as "beautiful wāhine toa" who would be missed. Jacquie Bates said their voices and laughter would long be heard at Houhora.
Houhora Heads campground proprietor Cathy Wagener has appealed to the Far North District Council to paint arrows on the road to remind foreign drivers to keep left.
"These tourists, a lovely couple from Chile, had arrived the night before, having found the accommodation they had booked elsewhere closed," she said.
"On the morning of the accident, they went to the office and asked to book another night.
"They said they had fallen in love with the camp and wanted to stay on.
"They headed out the drive, and within a couple of hundred metres were involved in this dreadful accident."
Earlier the same morning in an unrelated incident, a campervan had been driven on the wrong side of the same road. A local woman who was following tooted and signalled until the driver realised their mistake and corrected.
"There have been a number of near misses on other occasions, and this is an ongoing problem," Wagener said.
"We have decided to put up a notice at the gate asap, reminding visitors to drive on the left.
"Would it be possible for the council to paint arrows on the road outside the camp as a further reminder to tourists to keep left?
"Perhaps this way another such tragedy could be avoided."
Mayor John Carter said he would ask council staff to address the issue, as they had been asked to do on West Coast Road in Waipapakauri and other tourist roads.