Around the South
Trip Start Aug 24, 2004
41Trip End May 09, 2005
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On Monday the 4th, Mike, Oli and I headed out to Kaiteriteri when we heard there wouldn't be any work. I wanted to see Split Apple Rock so insted of the beach, we headed a bit beyond Kaiteri and not quite to Marahau. After a short walk we made it to a beach and there was the great SPLIT APPLE ROCK
Wednesday the 6th I headed out to Nelson. After grabbing my mail I headed West via Lewis Pass. I stopped out at Cape Foulwind, took a few pics, and moved on. I ended up in Greymouth for the night staying in the upper part of a bar. One free Monteith's with the bed. Not a bad deal.
On Thursday I headed toward the glaciers which I bipassed the first time I came up the West Coast
With a giant sand fly hanging from the building and phrases like "Eat a possum, Save a tree", how could I not stop? I saved two trees myself. It's interesting that in Australia the possum is endangered while in New Zealand they're trying to wipe them out completely. The possum is extremely harmful for the native forest and I wouldn't mind seeing them wiped out. They're a pest. Anyway...after failing to convince the Israelis to eat possum, we headed out to the glaciers. We settled on doing a guided walk of Franz Josef. When we found out we were too late for that, we just went to the glacier anyway. There is a certain point where everything is roped off and DOC has basically posted warnings that say you're proceeding at your own risk. So Yoni and I followed a guided walk up to the ice. Without crampons and other equipment we didn't go on to the ice, but still had a good climb up to the glacier.
After the glaciers, I dropped the guys off and headed back to Hokitika. I just didn't feel like staying down by the glaciers
Yesterday I headed out to do Arthur's Pass. I had been looking forward to this drive because of all of the positive things I've heard about it. Of course it had to be cloudy and raining. I wanted to do the Temple Basin walk to see all of the peaks in the area, but DOC said the clouds wouldn't be low enough. They did show me a track called The Beasely Spur Track which had nice views of the rivers and mountains. When I heard the words "Free hut", my plans were settled. I drove out to the bottom of the track and hastily threw things out of my pack and into it. I ended up forgetting my contact solution, but I brought a bit of food and warm clothing, so I'd be ok. I tramped for two hours up the mountain and finally found the hut. I was soaking wet and cold (up a couple thousand meters). I failed twice to make a fire, but the third attempt was successful. I probably wouldn't have been too happy if I hadn't gotten a fire going. It rained all night and I woke up this morning to find it clear and beautiful outside. What I missed in the fog and rain the night before was easily seen along the path on the way down.
After my descent, I drove to Christchurch and got a bed...and here I am. It's been a pretty uneventful day, but the last few have been quite good despite the rain. I think I might be here for two nights and then off to the North Island. I'm really having major music withdrawls. It's not pretty driving. We're talking AM radio folks. I suppose I'll live. hehe. Until later,