|FOX GLACIER - Friday 26th January to Saturday 27th (Days 91 & 92)
The 7 hour bus journey from Queenstown is awesome, passing the grand freshwater lakes of Wanaka and Hawea then climbing up through the mountains of Mt Aspiring NP over the Haast Pass (stopping at Thunder Creek Falls along the way) to the west coast of the South Island. From there it was on to Fox Glacier, a one-street place, only a short distance from the magnificient glacier.
It was a beautiful afternoon when we arrived so we set straight out to walk around Lake Matheson which has one of the most famous panoramas in NZ of Mt Tasman and Mt Cook (well it would have done if the mountains hadn't been in cloud!).
The next day we set off on a half-day guided walk to and onto Fox Glacier itself. The walk to actually get onto the ice was a fairly strenuous one (I thought Gill wouldn't make it at one stage!), and with Gill having to wear boots borrowed from the guide company so that crampons could be fitted, it was inevitable that blisters would be a problem. Finally though we were on the ice and followed some pre-cut ice steps (done each day as the glacier is one of the fastest moving ones in the world, and advancing for that matter!) for about an hour. All pretty spectacular stuff.