Nov 01, 2012
Mar 06, 2013
With another box ticked, we started the 120km trip from Milford back to Te Anu. On the way there are numerous viewpoints to look at glaciers, snow-capped mountains, lakes and waterfalls though the vastness and sheer beauty is almost impossible capture on camera. Of note is the distinct lake of settlements primarily due weather and Te Namu (sandfly or blackfly) described by Captain Cook as "the mischievous animal". This fly drove us insane when we attempted to chill by a Gunn Lake for an hour. Apparently we will be plagued by it until we get north of Greymouth in about a week's time.
For the last day or so as we have been making our way to Milford Sound and made several slips of the tongue by referring to it as Milford Haven, due our obvious Pembrokeshire connection. How bizarre that when we finally get there, it was in fact named after Milford Haven by a Welsh sealing captain, John Grono. We spent over 2 hours on our scenic cruise around the Fiord and learnt some interesting facts. Milford Sound is one of the wettest places on earth with typical annual rainfall of 7 to 9 metres a year. As it rains for at least 200 days a year, it was hardly surprising we caught it on a cloudy day. It is over 2km wide at the widest point and 417m deep with huge waves where it meets the Tasman Sea. The steep sides, up to 1000 metres near vertical cliff faces, have infrequent tree avalanches that leave huge scars on the rock faces.