Pioneer Hut from Von Bulow.
My finger is feeling a bit better and it looks like there is another high pressure system rolling in for a few days, so I’m catching a heli ride and heading back up into the mountains and the Pioneer Hut on Monday…New Zealand time. The Pioneer Hut sits in the middle of the Fox Glacier and right next to Mount Tasman, a neighboring peak of Mount Cook and pretty rowdy in it’s own right. I will probably try to come out after this sunny spell and then set the sights on Mount Aspiring, but we’ll see how things shape up as the days pass.
I spent some time up the road at the homes of some people I met at “The Forks” and on the coast yesterday, and checked out the Tasman Sea, which was churning more than any ocean I’ve ever seen. (It’s not like I’m an ocean guru though…but it looked intense.) It’s pretty wild how different the weather is just ten minutes up the road and it was quite sunny there while it was pissing rain in the town of Franz Josef. They say Franz Josef gets 4000mm (about 180 inches) of rain per year, and the mountains seem to attract the worst of the weather coming off the ocean. Not a big surprise, but it’s still interesting how different the weather is only a few miles north.
A rough Tasman Sea.
It was pretty cool to walk around a little bit in the woods and on the beach, and it is amazing how much things grow in the temperate rainforest down low. Plants I’ve never seen before were everywhere and even the tree trucks seem to have their own little forests growing on them. We also checked on some fishing nets that were set by Tai Naka, a Japanese guide/skier who has lived in the area for a few years, and were lucky enough to catch a good size fish for dinner. Good stuff and quite yummy! Anyway, I’ll catch you on the flip-side. Ciao…for now!