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Franz Josef – Wanaka – Queenstown – Te Anau leisure drive.

NEW ZEALAND | Monday, 8 October 2007 | Views [1010] | Comments [1]

Well, this RAIN is forecast for a few days, so we decided to cut our losses and head down to Te Anau for a couple of days to see the Doubtful and Milford sounds.  As we entered the Hasst Pass for the return leg to Wanaka, the rain was still falling; we should point out that we have NEVER seen rain like this.  The higher up the pass we got, the rain turned into Snow; Snowflakes about 1” – 25mm big.  When we seen the news two days later, the pass was just about closed so we were lucky to get through that day.  In spite of the weather we stopped off at a couple of places to do a couple of short walks, good choice of Snowboarding clothes for us; worked a treat in the poor weather.  It was a long drive back because of this, so we stopped for the night in Wanaka again and thought we would head to Te Anau via’ Queenstown the following day.  We arrived at Wanaka to a total different weather pattern, they had had Snow but the weather had broken to reveal a beautiful evening overlooking the calm Lake Wanaka waters.  We set off nice and early for Queenstown in the most clear Blue sky you could imagine, when we arrived in Queenstown the Mountains had a fresh snow fall and were covered as low as 400 mtr’s; not many happy Snowboard / Skiers as they had closed the season a couple of days earlier.  They did re-open for the day, but in a rush and a lot of them missed the news before it was too late to return.  Faced with this new day of Snow and Sun, we decided to go up in the Queenstown Gondola for a viewing; well worth the change in our plan.  While up there Andy started talking to the Paragliding pilots about Kites and stuff, and before Em’ knew anything he had signed up for a jump off of the Mountain; so off he set for the walk to the launch site.  A few minutes later, there he was anchored to the pilot waving at Em’ madly.  After the flight and another trip up in the Gondola, Andy appeared full of smiles and said ‘That was good, really relaxing up there’ He had just jumped off of a 2500 ft Mountain attached to ‘KITE’ and he found it ‘ relaxing’ one weird man.  We were about to go and claim our free beer which he got for doing the jump, when we spotted the Jet boat sign; Andy had the bug now.  Without too much persuasion, actual none at all; Em was booking us on the next boat.  After a quick call to the next hostel to confirm we could arrive later than planned, off we went.  An 1 hr long ride of pure fun, full of 180 & 360 spins and speeds up to 80 km/hr about 50 mph; at some points the base of the Jet boat scraped the bottom.  The driver pulled a 360 spin to stop and calmly informed us all, that hitting the bottom was ‘natural’.  Ye’ right, hearing some knocks and bumps at that speed in a boat; doesn’t sound natural to me????  When we came off of that boat, Andy said it made the adrenalin rush which we both agreed; now Em wants to do others around New Zealand but only ‘to compare them’.  Really Em?  We had to leave now, 1830hr’s and couple of hour drive to find a hostel on a Deer farm out in the country side before it got too dark.  Well that didn’t work out, pitch black when we entered Te Anau.  We found it in the end, it being a lovely Hostel out in the middle of nowhere; spending the night in a ‘cabin’ style looked good so a shower and straight to bed. 

Tags: On the Road




Hi, well i was spell bound with the story, what fun you are having, can not wait to here all the details on your return,i can not wait for the next leg of your journey.
I am doing the same old so so, just got John of to work, done some cleaning,(boring).

Anyway you two have lots of fun.
Love Mum,John,Jess,Ben

  Mum Oct 9, 2007 12:07 AM

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