The job of sharing Kaingaroa Forest among eight iwi is not over yet.
After six years of talks, they've reached an agreement to divide the land among them according to mana whenua rights, or tribal territories.
But they now have to split 176,000 hectares between them - which will be worked out in percentage portions.
Pem Bird from one of the iwi, Ngati Manawa, is pleased the stories of his ancestors have been acknowledged by an adjudication panel.
He said the mana whenua has been restored, and the words of his people's tipuna (ancestors ) has been vindicated.
Mr Bird said the mana whenua process was fair and just.
Kaingaroa Forest lands were returned to eight iwi in 2008 under a Treaty of Waitangi settlement.