A Kiwi Christmas

Trip Start Jul 29, 2009
Trip End Jan 23, 2010

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Flag of New Zealand  , South Island,
Thursday, December 24, 2009

We arrived to the glaciers on a beautiful afternoon. Since it is summer here and the days are long we decided to take a hike up to the terminal face of the Franz-Josef Glacier. It was a nice hike and we got a great view of the bright blue glacial ice shining in the daylight. The next day we took a hike up to see the Fox Glacier which was just a bit farther down the road. The hike to the viewpoint was amazing! The forest here is full of bright green moss and ferns and gives you the impression you are walking through a fairy tale. To get to the top we had to cross a river that had not very many ways across it. After a long, hard contemplation of what would be the best way to get across, we walked up the river a few hundred meters, ducking and diving through the bush, and found a spot that we could get across. Once we crossed the river and finally made it to the viewpoint, we noticed that there were old people with crutches that made it across the river, apparently with a lot less of an effort that we had put in. Nevertheless, the view of the glacier was undescribable. We could see all the way up through the valley and into the mountains which the glacier had carved and molded to the spectacle that it is today. We were also lucky enough to get to see a massive piece of the glacier break off the face of the terminal right before our eyes. It is not something that many visitors of this glacier are usually lucky enough to see so we were pretty stoked about that.
Today was our last day here at the Franz-Josef Glacier National Park, and of course, it rained the entire day. We took a short drive to see one of the lakes in the area, which wasn't anything to write home about, and took a 20 minute stroll through the bush. Other than that, we both just ended up driving each other crazy sitting and staring at each other in our tiny studio apartment that we, once again, overpaid for. Since we are at the end of our trip (and budget) we have been eating relatively conservatively. If I eat any more spaghetti after this trip I think that I should change my name to Bertolli and open an Italian restaurant, because we are now the spaghetti-making-masters! Our next stop is going to be Milford Sound. We are very excited about that, so hopefully the weather turns around by the time we get there. 

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