Glaciers and Hot Pools
Trip Start Sep 07, 2003
28Trip End Sep 07, 2004
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First we did a tramp at the nearby Mount Aspiring National Park. Wanaka's own alpine playground - a haven for serious mountaineers and amateur nutters like us. We did a 2 day walk into the Matukituki Valley with a detour to spectacular Rob Roy Glacier en route. More spectacular for its noisy ice-avalanches crashing down the mountain-side. Luckily we weren't within range, so didn't feel the need to run for our lives! We shared the trampers hut with a group of serious climbers and then headed back out the way we'd come, while they headed off to scale the peaks looming large behind the Hut.
Next we headed over the Haast Pass (very beautiful), to the West Coast
Here we spent a day scrambling around on Fox Glacier - one of the spectacular glaciers that carves its way down from Mount Cook almost to the ocean edge. We adorned crampons and carried sticks, and followed close behind our guide who conveniently cut steps into the ice-face for us to climb, and helpfully pointed out fatally deep crevasses for us to avoid! Nice guide! It was very spectacular and a lot of fun, and almost half the price of its more commercial neighbour Franz Josef glacier - but equally impressive.
Finally, on our way back to Wanaka, we indulged in one last overnight tramp. This one was up along the Copland Pass, through rainforest into the mountains. It was a long 6 hour climb up to the overnight Hut, conveniently placed next to the most southerly thermal pools in the world (I think!). We stripped off and plunged in - soaking in natural hot pools with snow-capped mountains and rainforest all around was very special. Topped off with a bottle of wine over scrabble cards in the Hut (thanks P&C - they're still going strong! but we won't mention the fact that we were beaten by two Swedes* that night - the shame of it!)
*inhabitants of Sweden, not the vegetable type.
And so here we are back in Wanaka..... watch out for the next exciting installment coming soon (complete with piccies of Marcus in his sexy supermarket uniform and another with his head down a bog!)
lots of love
Rachel & Marcus (aka Shirley & Leverne)