April 13, 2012...Fox Glacier

Heading north along the west coast towards the Glaciers today… we are up and out at the crack!  We zip our liners into our jackets, and today I'm wearing my horizontal striped (I know that vertical striping is better…ha ha ha) New Zealand polys.  Feeling warm and toasty, actually a tad over heated we ride off.  Riding through the crisp morning air I cooled off and felt less bound up.  The more layers you wear the more constricting the riding can be.  You do get use to it but for the first 10 miles or so it does take a bit to get into the groove!  Today will be a longer ride and we are excited about that.  We both downloaded some new tunes onto our playlists, and the day of rest did us the world of good.  Riding out of Queenstown was just as spectacular as riding in.  The trees are sporting their most colorful autumn colors, and every now and again you get to ride through a shower of colorful leaves….I love that part!  We rode up and out of the Waitiri Valley, and, no jokes, it totally looked like a scene out of the kids movie "The land before time", you know the one with Petri!.  I know that you are probably getting sick of me telling you how beautiful this countryside is… oh well..sorry mate… it is just that!!  I definitely feel privileged to be experiencing all of this!!  After riding up past Lake Wanaka, we took a break and stopped by the Blue Pools.  We parked the bikes and locked up the helmets and hiked off into the very lush ferny forrest.  The pools were just that…a very vivid turquoise blue and very inviting for a dip.  After layering up this morning and hiking for 30 minutes in riding gear maybe a quick dip would refreshing?….Ahh I don't think so, the water was more than freezing, if it was any colder it would have been frozen solid….so just a little refreshing splash would have to do!  Back on the bikes…Fox Glacier here we come.  As we got closer to the west coast the wind picked up.  Decent gusts were pushing the bikes along with Kev and I around a bit.  I think that the West coast gets its fair share of wind judging by the direction the trees and bushes are growing.  It is amazing at how tropical and ferny the area is, right up to the coast.  There is every shade of green imaginable, and then some.  The colors are so vivid it is spectacular!  You swear that you were wearing polarized glasses.  As we rode closer towards the glacier the most fantastic rainbow graced us…I could hardly take my eyes off it! We pulled into Fox Glacier around 6pm, yeah, a long day of riding.  It was drizzling the clouds were dark and puffy, the sun rays were trying to peek through as we rode down the grey dirt road towards the glacier.  It was kind of an eerie feeling, almost like the calm before the storm….or earthquake?? The view of the glacier today was from 200 meters, I was excited to see something that was so old and still alive. There were many milky white streams flowing down from the glacier as we hiked up the pathways towards it.  Our gear is quite damp by now, my striped ploys were working like a charm.  Kev was enjoying stomping right through the streams we had to cross in his gortex riding boots.  They really do keep water out!  The glacier was dirty, but I would be too if I was that old!  It was a unique sight.  Fox still had it…It was rugged, chiseled and had that deep blue glacier color inside….very cool….literally…ha ha ha!  Yeah I know corny!