Leaving Hokitika with overcast and rainy weather. This continued all the way down the coast to Franz Joseph, so we had a quick lunch visited the local tourist office and also called in to a Kiwi Sanctuary to find out about all the work thats happening over here to aid their conservation and one of the many ways they are doing this is to control the predators that were introduced to the country, Stoats and rats
By the time we came out the weather had dried and we drove on down to Fox Glacier where we were staying for another 4 nights. That evening we walked up to the lookout for Fox Glacier a nice pleasant walk and a great view.
Next day Rob woke me up just before 6, I quickly pointed out the error of his ways, no issue with the time, but he did not have a cup of coffee ready for me and ws insisting we left right away! On the upside, we had stunning views of Mount Tasman and Mount Cook also perfect reflections of both mountains in Lake Matheson. Back to the hotel for a belated breakfast and then back over to Lake Matheson and a hike over the mountain to lake Gault. There was a young man there from Australia who was about to dive in the Lake, he confirmed our thoughts as declared it freezing.
Later that afternoon we took another small hike to look out at the largest active land slip in New Zealand, it’s been on the move for many years and heavy rain still brings more of it down.
Ok the next morning Rob had learned his lesson – woke me at 5.45 with a coffee cup in his hand and then we drove over to Okarito to walk up the the trig point. The drive over the mountain was very eerie as there was a combination of mist rising from the valleys and also low cloud. By the time we got to Okarito it had started to clear up and we hiked up to the trig point where we were spoilt with magnificent views of the alpine range.
We drove back to Franz Joseph and stitched together a number of walks around the Franz Joseph glacier valley as well as a walk up to Lake Wombat, I have to say although the walk up was quite challenging the lake itself was a disappointment and was about the only time neither of us found anything there to photograph. After an early dinner we headed off to a Fox Glacier lookout point that was much better than expected. We then drove 6 miles down to Gillespie beach, this was another “interesting drive” as it was a gravel road, slightly wider than a single track and with many twists and turns. It turned out to be a worthwhile journey as we were treated to another lovely sunset and also views on the some of the alpine range bathed in the warm sunset light. Rob also challenged me to take a photo of the moon with my camera and as you can see below, the result was pretty good, especially as I hand held it. The drive back in the dark was even more interesting and we had to drive slow so that we could any Kiwi’s if they were out an about.
No post would be complete without animal and arty shots