Two helicopters and crews from Ahipara and Kaitaia fire brigades were involved in battling a suspicious blaze which burnt about two acres of Ahipara's gumfields.
Ahipara chief fire officer Dave Ross said crews were called about 10.30am on Saturday after an aircraft noticed a lot of smoke coming from the top of the gumfields.
"It took us a while to find the fire itself because we had to go from the Herekino side and the Ahipara side but a helicopter with the deputy principal rural fire officer on board, they found the fire.
"It was in a pretty remote area so we had to take our four-wheel drive fire vehicles in and the two helicopters doused most of the fire and we just mopped up afterwards."
Ross said a tanker and a fire appliance from Kaitaia, and a tanker, ute, and side-by-side from Ahipara were sent to the blaze.
He said the it appeared it had been deliberately lit.
"It burnt out probably two acres of area. It was right at the top of the gumfields, as far as you could go. It took us a little while to get there because we were in a four-wheel drive and it was fairly rough terrain. It was very suspicious," he said.
Ross said crews were back at the station by about 4pm.
"We wouldn't have been able to do much without [the helicopters]."