Wednesday, 10 February 2010

In Transit

Another travel day, this time we drive from the rain of Franz Joseph, down the coast, across the Haast Pass to Wanaka then over the Crown Range to a sunny Queenstown.

Last glimpse of Franz Joseph Glacier

The coast varies between flat and uninteresting and spectacular with the odd idiosyncrasy thrown in. Bruce’s Bay was an obvious place to stop in the hope that it might bring the Boys a little luck. Generations of passers by have created a unique sculpture park of small cairns and various pieces of jetsam.

Bruce's Bay 1

Bruce's Bay 2

Having eaten well again the previous evening we had made the decision to breakfast on the way and our chosen venue was South Westland Salmon Farm where the portions of Smoked Salmon Eggs Benedict were another strategic error. The length of the journey made it impossible to take the required sleep after the food.

On to the spectacular Knight’s Point, where between avoiding the sand flies we managed to get a few shots to record the visit.

Knight's Point

Mountains various in cloud

Haast Pass is the route that takes one from the coast through the Mount Aspiring National Park over to Wanaka. Visibility varied on the way but tantalising glimpses of crags and peaks through the cloud cover convince that clear weather here must be spectacular.

In this shot Mts. Solution, Ward and Trent are wreathed in the low-lying cloud of the day.

Thunder Falls

Thunder Falls, one of a number of beautiful falls that are to be found as we weave our way through the hanging valleys and gorges that line the route.

Must have liked the look of this it deserves a repeat

Over Haast Pass

Lake Hawea the Lads

Lakes Hawea and Wanaka lie at the end of this leg and by the time we reach there the weather is clearing and visibility improving, they provide lots of jogs to the memory about previous trips to the Rockies and at times it would be easy to imagine that you were travelling along Wastwater.

A pit stop in Wanaka prefaced the journey up the next mountain pass, over the Crown Range, through Cardrona with its very old shack-like hotel and bar and over the top to a view down into Otago and the towns of Arrowtown and Queenstown.

Lake Wanaka

From the top of Crown Range

Central Otago stretches before us

Queenstown, standing on Lake Wakatipu, was to be our home for the night is something to see, gorgeous lake and stunning mountains, one set of which is appropriately named the Remarkables. It was with real delight that we found our accommodation and took in the views that were there for free from the motel site.

View from front gate of Motel

Back along the road
Lake side Queenstown

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