|Resting in between before summit|
There was this magic moment that I felt, when the ice melting, it creates a tiny waterfall from the peak, where the wind blows onto it and they break apart dancing in the sky. To the end of the track, I couldn't believe what I've seen, huge hanging ice covering the peak.
Not so big campsite, good for few vans and small area for tent site under a big tree. Small kitchen but the advantage here was spacious bathroom. I think it's my best shower here.
Time to head up to West Cost! They said it's the wettest area in New Zealand, receiving more than 10,000 mm rainfall in a year! Taking our time on wheels passing through Haast Pass, there's nothing much we can do despite many stops we could make. Dark clouds rumbling, mist covering the density of the rain forest. The weather was really disappointing, no matter how long we stay, the forecast showed no good sign.
Show must go on, first stop was Blue Pool and we had a blast! Regardless shitty weather, the pool was in perfect blue. If the light was too much probably the pool looked whiter. A nice short walk but only we're distracted by sandflies, the rest was beautiful. Some people even dare to jump in that cold water with no sun, they're insane!
Lake Paringa Lodge ($15/pp)
No sign of weather improvement. We continued our journey to Fox Glacier. Nestled in Westland Tai Poutini National Park, tucked in the dense canopy of trees, it is somehow interesting, and rare to see thick jungle like this remembering how majority of New Zealand's land has turned to home for sheep and cattle. Walking in Fox Glacier track takes about an hour return passing the river bed and a steep ascending at last part of climbing. The glaciers which were previously snaking down the mountain has slowly disappeared, little of the glaciers remain.
Hotel Hari Hari (12pp)
A country-style hotel with open area for camping next to it. Free shower, small kitchen, stable wi-fi at the lobby.
Did nothing much again. The main reason for us to come to Hokitika was the glowworm. Glowworm is an insect larvae that glow through bioluminescence. Actually the best place to see glowworm in New Zealand is at Waitomo Caves on the North Island. However, the price is out of our range, so while there's a free one, we just did it.
|Glowworm Dell, photo by catperku|
Woodstock Hotel (5pp)
An old tavern, very cheap but no facility. Right next to the glowworm dell. Camping not allowed so we slept in the car, although some people set up tents. Good that we slept in the car cause it's raining cats and dogs, mosquitoes and sandflies!
Due to the bad weather we decided to skip all the cities along the way such as Greymouth, Punaikaki, Westpac, and Abel Tasman, instead we drove straight to Picton to take the ferry to North Island. We were two days earlier than the initial schedule for the crossing. Not many good campsites on the way so we drove 5 hours straight to a decent campsite, 45 minutes before Picton. I felt unwell on that day so Vivi had to drive by herself, sorry and thank you!
Smiths Farm Holiday Park (16pp)
Lovely campground! Welcomed by homemade muffin. Good shower and kitchen facility, access to glowworm dell and waterfall. $1 for 250mb wifi. The owner gave us treats to feed the animals.
Crossing from Picton to Wellington. What a nice ferry! It looks more like a cruise, or a shopping mall, or a hotel, whatever. There are several sections for food, one looks like a cafetaria, another one looks like bar. The wi-fi on board was hardly accessible during that time. Three hours left till we reach North Island!
Traveled in 27 December 2016-26 January 2017
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