Thursday, 25 June 2015

Franz Josef Glacier - Feb '15

The following day we had reserved for our glacier hike though somehow we had forgotten to actually book a spot on any of the hikes. We um’d and ah’d over the heli-hike vs glacier walk and finally decided once in a life time trip n all that and why not we’ll go large and heli-hike it only to discover it books out weeks in advance, oops. Luckily they had a few spots left on a hike later that day. We killed time by exploring the few shops and having lunch and before long it was time to report in and get kitted up in our trendy glacier hiking gear. Go to Franz Josef and you’ll see many groups of people wearing bulk blue jackets and funky red bum bags being herded along. Soon we were one of them and on our way to the heli pad for our short helicopter trip up to the glacier.

Once up there the views took my breath away. To be honest I’m surprised I had much breath left as this was fast becoming a recurring theme on the South Island. It was saddening to hear how much the glacier has retreated over the last few years. I feel privileged that I was able to stand on it and explore it on the safe tracks dug out by our guides. The scale of it is impossible to describe and though I thought I knew what I would be seeing I really didn’t. Our guide was both entertaining and interesting and the walk didn’t have a dull moment, well I did have my camera so every moment we stood still I took twenty photos of the ice of course. Once again I was glad for the lighter camera. Though I was still missing the comfort of my familiar Canon the advantages of the Fuji were outweighing the shortcomings and I was glad I had purchased it when I did.

After a few hours on the ice we were back in the helicopter and soon back to the village to collect the car and move on to our next destination, Queenstown.

No comments:

Post a Comment