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Read and rate Travel Journal Entries for Fiordland National Park, New Zealand

Feb 22, 2013 - Quintin Lodge to Milford Sound

Day 4 - Milford Track Today is the longest day for miles: 13.5. Same morning procedure: make lunch, have breakfast, leave at 7:30 a.m. The guides told us to think of the hike in 3 parts: 5.5 miles to the Boatshed, 4.5 miles to the MacKay Waterfall, 3.5 miles to the end. The rain forest on the western side of the divide is much thicker and has huge tree ferns. I guess that's what happens with 6-7 meters of rain/year. It's actually dark sometimes because of the plants. Oh, and the weather forecast should have been "Superb". It's an absolutely...

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Feb 21, 2013 - Pompolona Lodge to Quintin Lodge

Day 3 - Milford Track Today is the day I wanted beautiful, sunny weather because we are hiking 9 miles, climbling 700 meters to MacKinnon Pass, and then down 900 meters to our next lodge. Half the weather forecast was correct, the "Fine" part wasn't. It should have said - "Bad and Getting Worse". In rained during the night, but stopped by morning. Today we started hiking at 7:30 a.m. because it's a harder hike. The weather wasn't too bad at this point and we could see the pass. After a few hours we stopped at Mintaro Hut - where the...

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Feb 20, 2013 - Glade House to Pompolona Lodge

Day 2 - Milford Track. Generator on and lights go on at 6:30 a.m. Yup, woke me up. We make our lunches, then have breakfast. First they serve porridge, and there is fruit & yogurt, juice, coffee, tea, hot chocolate. Then they serve a hot breakfast: eggs, bacon, hash browns, tomato (very English). This definitely a step up from the Flying Kiwi breakfast. We start hiking at 8:30. Today's hike is 10 miles. We hike up the valley following the Clinton River, through the rain forest. Every now & then we get to a clearing and can see the canyon...

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Oct 14, 2011 - Fiordland National Park

Friday, October 14 – Fiordland National Park, New Zealand Fiordland National Park is a National Heritage Site, takes up almost one tenth of the country and is truly specular! It was formed by thrusting upward of the plates, volcanic eruptions, glacier erosion, and periods of submersion below the sea bed – leaving high mountains that plunge almost straight down into the ocean. These mountains can reach 5000 or more feet, the lakes can be up to (or rather down to) over 1000 feet, and the water in the fiords can also be that deep. They say...

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Dec 20, 2010 - Fiordland

If the ragged Alpine peaks of Fiordland are the crowning piece of a trip to New Zealand than the Milford and Doubtful Sounds are the jewels in that crown and glistening jewels at that, with over 6 metres of rainfall every year. "What short walks can you advise?", I ask the girl at the Te Anau I-Site and as Te Anau is the self-styled 'walking capital of the world', she has lots on offer but mostly longer treks like the 67 km, 3 day Kepler Track, but that is something for the young European crowd that descend on these parts (loads of them, a...

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Mar 14, 2010 - More Great Walks - The Milford Highway

The Milford Track is said to be 'one of the finest walks in the world'.. before the construction of the Homer tunnel in the 50s which made way for the building of the current road it was actually the only way to reach Milford Sound. Nowadays it's only the trampers who trek the 53.5km over the giant McKinnon Pass. In summer you have to book and today was the only starting date Gerard could get. Off he went with 40 other devotees for a 3 night/4 day trek starting with a boat ride at Te Anau Downs. I headed up the highway about 80km direction...

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Trip Journal


Susan ar Strae 2009

Mar 13, 2010 - More Kepler Track Trampin'

Still here in Te Anau so had a chance to read up on the place at the local 'events' hall this morning. The town has a resident population of about 4000 but that jumps to 10,000 during the peak (Dec/Jan) summer months. The lake is New Zealand's second largest (after Taupo in the North Island). The small town is basically the gateway to Fiordland - all 1.25 million hectares of it! After lunch I headed to the end of the Kepler Track - Rainbow Reach where I ran about 12km and met Gerard on his way back. Much like the first part, the last part...

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Trip Journal


Susan ar Strae 2009

Mar 12, 2010 - Caves A Glowing with Worms at Te Ana-au

After a short rain shower to start the day - we are afterall in one 'of the wettest parts of the world' the day turned out really nice - if a little chilly. I did a one hour run about the shores of lake Te Anau as far as the local river and there were some strong breezes. Not that it makes much difference these days as I'm rather slow.. I spent some time foraging for rainwear and picked up a new jacket and rain pants.. hopefully water proof as I'll be needing them in the Sounds where rainfall is 3-5 times higher than on this side of the...

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Susan ar Strae 2009

Mar 11, 2010 - Tramping Kepler and Manapouri Lakeviews

So we're in Fiordland at last! The ubiquitous Captain Cook and Co were the first Europeans to arrive in Fiordland. After that many sealers and whalers came and became the first settlements to the region. In 1986 it was made World Heritage and today there are over 500km of walkways making it a leading World Walking - some say Capital. The 14 fiords are 215 km in length. They were called Sounds by the early European settlers - who were mainly English or Welsh who would not have been familiar with Fiords. A 'true' sound is actually a drowned...

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Trip Journal


Susan ar Strae 2009

Jan 10, 2010 - West Coast

Tues Jan 5 Off a whole kilometre down the road to the Pancake Rocks. We got there around 10:30 am. We walked out to see the rocks, there is a great walkway out to the ocean. The rocks are really the cliffs at the ocean edge that just look like stacks of pancakes, made that way because of the type of rock they are and the settling of the earth beneath them. There are spots where they have been eroded away by the waves that create blow holes. We got there at low tide so we could see some beach areas and it was quite windy so the waves...

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Feb 5, 2009 - Fiordland National Park

We entered Fiordland National Park about 7 am this morning. Fiordland is one of New Zealand's most majestic natural wonders. The park is made up of several Sounds, but they are more accurately classified as fjords. We enter Milford Sound early this morning. Milford Sound is surrounded by sheer rock faces that rise up on either side. Around lunch, we entered Thompson Sound and connected inland to Doubtful Sound, sailing around Secretary Island lying in the middle. Through Milford Sound, the 14 nautical miles to the Tasman Sea are lined with...

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Feb 19, 2008 - Fiordland

February 19 Fiordland In 1904, with the simple stroke of a pen, New Zealand set aside 5% of their country as a National Park and called if Fiordland. That puts the area at about 3.1 million acres of vast wilderness and protected wildlife habitats, marked by fourteen deep glacial fiords discovered by our favorite cartographer and navigator, good old Captain Cook. The formation of the fiords took place at literally a glacial pace over several million years; volcanoes erupted, rocky plates smacked into one another and the area was formed with...

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