Ice climbing the Fox Glacier 2

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Had a bangup time stabbin the snow. Taking in the sites between climbs made for a lovely day.


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Super fortunate our guides were comfortable enough with us to take us down into a moulin, or circular melt cave inside the glacier. The passing of helicopters above made the whole experience surreal, we hiked in 10 or so feet until it started to get snug and snapped a few photos.

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Getting hoisted to safety.

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Group photo credit to Marc Kaplan.

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Flying out of the glacier, stoked, exhausted, high on life, all of the above…

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Ended the night with one of the most scrumptious pizzas I’ve ever had.

Ice climbing the Fox Glacier 1

Went through Fox Guides to get our asses up the Fox Glacier. Mitsy had this one brainstormed first, and we couldn’t say no since it looked so sick. It was a large part of the day, and our guide Sarah was a class act making sure we all got our hero photos and teaching us the basics of ice climbing on a glacier.

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Gearing up at the town before heading to the choppa.

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Oh snap, it’s getting real, taking the bus.

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Crew of 4 for the adventure.

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Pumped to get up in the air!

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Some Kea coming to say hi, they’re mountain parrots that chew up everything.

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First time in crampons.

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Marc, looking like a goddamn badass.

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Mitsy practicing her technique before we rope up and climb.

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Sarah our fearless leader.

Christchurch to Fox Glacier

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Cool aqueduct protecting the road from heavy rain. Mitsy driving on the right side for the first time.

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Beach at Seaview on the Kumara Junction Highway.

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Lake Wahapo.

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Mitsy sneaking up on me as I poop.

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Cool guide showing us where Mt. Cook is, the highest peak in New Zealand.

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Beautiful sunset at the walk towards Lake Matheson in Fox Glacier, great recommendation from our host at the White Fox B&B .

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Flight to South Island New Zealand, Christchurch to Fox Glacier

Day 1 of the road trip. A few cool sights on the way to our B&B in Fox Glacier.

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Cute little cottage we stayed in for the first night in Christchurch.

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Drove through some increasingly mountainous and rugged terrain, happened upon the Kura Tawhiti / Castle Hill Conservation Area and had to take a look. Really cool rock formations to hike around for an hour.
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Flight to New Zealand

Mitsy and I brainstormed our inagural ‘extended trip’. New Zealand was to be the place. Three major goals, big ol’ road trip, ice climbing at the Fox Glacier, and the Milford track. This, and all the in between stuff, spanned just over two weeks. Photos don’t do it justice, as they never do. It’s a place that feels raw, un-populated, and unspoiled by the fat footprint of tourism. In fact, about the only negative thing I can say about the South Island of New Zealand is that they have something worse than mosquitoes. Sandflies, the bane of our more hiking-focused days. I was told by a local I met that the gods created the perfect land of New Zealand for the Maori, and later added sandflies to deter the white settlers (apparently sandflies don’t bother with those of Maori blood). Then apparently some heretic invented DEET and solved the problem for us tourists.

Anyways, here is some pics from the trip. Can’t wait to return.

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Silverware and tasty soup, luck smiled on us with ‘lay back’ first class seats which wouldn’t be possible except for our standby flying hookup. Mitsy looking down on me from her seat.

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First night in Auckland, watching the news. Greenlip mussels below (eventually got some in Te Anau, tasty!), and my first meat pie. D-licious blue collar grub.

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