The End of the Earth

I made it to the southernmost point of the South island (excluding Stewart Island). Or, at least, some kiwis told me it was the southernmost point.

Looking slightly to my left, I saw a point that appeared to be even further south. Looking at a map, it looks like there are many places further south.

I decided to put my questions aside and enjoy the moment.

I’ve been making my way east towards the Catlins. Along the way, there have been too many “points” and lighthouses to count. I tell myself I won’t be fooled by a brown sign leading me down a winding road, but I always end up seeing what is at the other end.

It usually is worth it.

I found some nice free campsites and played soccer with my new friend Luka for about six hours over the past few nights.

Soccer balls and guitars are great items to have to make new friends.

We practiced some new juggling moves, some useful, some just silly.

I stayed at a place called Monkey Island, but didn’t find any monkeys. The place was still nice.

Road to Milford Sound

Much to the chagrin of everyone who has ever heard of New Zealand, I didn’t make it out to Milford Sound.  The weather was bad, and the forecast showed that would continue at least through the week.

I got antsy waiting around, so I left.

There were some spectacular sights on the way up there (the road had clear weather).

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The drive itself offered spectacular views.  These were just the ones I was able to stop for.

Kepler Track

I spent a few days in Queenstown, but was spending too much money and overwhelmed by the amount of backpackers.  In the few days I spent there, I went to a garden with strange-smelling roses, hiked the Queenstown Hill (pictured below), and ate a pretty declicious hamburger at Fergburger.  I also got hooked up with a free boat trip to a farm!

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Afterwards, I went to the Kepler Track, on of the Great Walks of New Zealand.  Like the other walks, the price for a hut was way too expensive for me to do the whole thing ($130 per night), so I went to one end, hiked up 15km to the hut, and hiked back.

The first part of the trip went through a dense forest next to a beach.

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A few kms of flat ground started ascending at a steady pace to the top.

The view remained largely unchanged until you got above the treeline.

The $130/night hut it all its glory.

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I wonder how long it will take until people start hiring porters to carry all their stuff for them, not that I am bitter or anything.

Near the hut, there is a rad cave you can go in.

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Roy’s Peak and Afternoon Sleep

Woke up at 3:20am this morning. A friend and I decided to do a sunrise hike up to Roy’s Peak, near Wanaka.

We didn’t wake up early enough.

We did, however, catch the sunrise in a great spot on the way up.

The hike took quite a while, but the views from the top were also lovely.

We also saw some rad sheep.

I slept for four hours after we got back.

Good day.

Mirror Lake and the Road to Wanaka

It was already late in the day when I made it to Mirror Lake. On a clear day, the lake is supposed to perfectly reflect Mt. Cook and be a spectacular sight.

My view was that of a cloudy lake. It was still nice, though.

The trip down to Wanaka, however, offered some spectacular views.

The campsite I stayed at was equally impressive.

I made it to Wanaka, and will be in the area for a while looking for a job. I’m running out of money. Turns out, New Zealand is impressively expensive.

More to come.