Sunday, March 18, 2012

Moke Lake and Glenorchy encore!

February 25th to 27th
After the Routeburn and Milford Sound (see last post) we went back to Moke Lake where they were wrapping up filming "Top of the Lake" even during the night! We spent another night there, then wandered an hour down the creek to get more blackberries, before heading to Glenorchy again. Scott had heard that Paradise, just north of there, was the place to go - but we ended up at a DOC site by the Route Burn (now you know how the track got its name).

The next morning Scott and I walked over the swing bridge, past Sylvan Lake, to the Rockburn Gorge.  On the way we were greeted by several fantails, lovely forest birds that follow you to pick off any insects you stir up as you walk.

Lovely fantail!
We took the trail to the chasm, and looked down - it seemed 100 m - to the rushing blue water below. Then wound around the other side and down to the beach.

Gorgeous blue water on its way to merge with the Dart River
We ate lunch on a rock and I got to be one more person taking pictures of insects on Scott's back. This time it is notorious sand flies and he definitely attracted the little beasts! We also got sprayed by a jetboat taking tourists on a ride. And there were inflatable canoes carrying another group of tourists. So much for peace and quiet in the wilderness!

Sand flies find another innocent victim to torture
We walked out to see the Dart River and enjoy the clear view of the mountains.

Scott at the Dart River
On the way back, we took an almost warm swim in Sylvan Lake, and then walked through the omnipresent greenness of the NZ rainforest. We were both a little blissed out on all the green. These little moss spheres enchanted me.

Magical moss
Crossing the swing bridge back to camp, we reentered reality with another omnipresent symbol. Either sheep or cows grace anyplace that isn't a city or wilderness it seems...

Bovines in paradise
Since it was our last night together, we celebrated our adventures with a gin and tonic happy hour. And maybe finished up a few other bottles of beer and wine...

Happy Hour arrives!
Reading by the river
The next day, before we took Scott to the airport in Queenstown for his journey home, we took one more short walk to Reid Lake. Thank you again Scott, for sharing your time (and great food!) with us!

Black swans on Reid Lake

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