Friday, March 11, 2016

March 12 2016 Rest Day Te Anau

This morning we were up early as we were going to do a Milford Sound cruise.  It was only 110 kms to Milford Sound from where we are staying however it was a 2.5 hour drive.  The main reason being that the road is so narrow and winding.

We stopped at a view point and took a couple of pictures and had a laugh at a sign which said “Do Not Feed The Kea”.  A few kms further on we stopped at a view point and I hopped out to take a picture and this great big parrot flew down and harassed me.  I called out that a Kea was there and nobody believed me but they did get out and we had fun playing with the bird.  Amy chased it around and around but it never did fly away. 

It rains 200 days a year in Milford Sound and they get 9 meters of rain per year.  So we were dressed in our best rain gear and had sandwiches made for the trip.   I had my long finger gloves and winter clothes on.  The road lived up to its reputation and the road is very winding with a 1.3 kms tunnel at the 70 kms mark which is something like 10% grade inside the tunnel.

Once at Milford Sound we boarded our tour boat for the cruise.  It wasn’t raining and the sun was even trying to put in an appearance.  Milford Sound is a World Heritage site and for good reason. It is absolutely stunning.  The mountains rise straight up thousands of feet from the sea.  There are water falls cascading into the ocean from the cliffs hundreds of feet up.  

In this one place you can see where one of the thousands of faults which crisscross New Zealand runs right through one of the mountians.

It is hard to imagine the Maori climbing down the cliffs into the fiords to collect the jade which they used for jewelry, tools and weapons.  

Totally discharged the battery on my camera.  I took 137 pictures. 

On the way back Jos let Agnes drive.  I think she had fun wrestling the van around the corners.  We came up to where there was a big sheep herd being driven down the road.  There were hundreds of sheep and they were all being herded along by the dogs who were busy keeping the flock together.  Another New Zealand box checked.

What a great day!



Anonymous said...

You were very fortunate not to get rained on at Milford Sound. If it is raining you get to see hundreds of waterfalls. If it is not, you get to see the beauty of the area and Mitre Peak and exhaust your camera battery taking pictures. Have a great day riding to Queenstown tomorrow, it is a great ride!

Anonymous said...

Perhaps a few "sheep jams" in the coming weeks.

Calgary Ken C.

Jim said...

Spectacular pictures. You all look like you are dressed for Canadian weather.
See next stop is Queens Town..ourt all time favorite place. It reminds us of Tahoe. Enjoy the hang gliders and bungee jumpers.

Anonymous said...

Beautiful!! Can't tell you how much we are enjoying your travel journal! J&E

Milly Johnson said...

Beautiful photos... Brings back memories witnessing this great beauty.. Oh - to be touring on a bike!

Cynthia Bergland said...

Those pictures are great! Keep up the good work, Terry!