Arrival at Mt. Cook was later in the day so we set up camp and took a 2 hour hike up the Hooker Valley across a couple cable suspension bridges to a glacial lake. It was a nice hike, but the rain persisted and kept us cool and gray. That was the coolest night yet for sleeping in the tent and only Ry made it all night out as Annie & I eventually ended up in the car for a bit of sleep. Morning brought the first clear skies and sun we had seen and Ry was bouncing off the cliffs. We broke camp, geared up, registered for a night in the Mueller Hut and began a 3000 foot climb over the course of 4 and a half hours. The trail was well marked and kept, but very steep. Ry was patient with those of us lesser fit. There are over 900 huts in NZ that are operated by the DOC and other organizations. This one sleeps 30 people and has solar lights, gas for cooking and rainwater tanks. Those sleeping inside are lined up like sardines on mats in bunkrooms. Ry slept out on the rocks. Up early that day for a magnificent sunrise as both Mt. Seely and Cook gave us some great views. The hike down was considerably easier, but still a bit of work as going down steep slopes requires much of your knees and balancing and such. There were a few spots that had us sitting and sliding and such, never very crazy though. We were in dire need of laundry and shower at that point and it was Ann Marie's birthday so we headed for Alexandra.