The end of my travels?!

Hey guys, what’s up?!

So, together with Kelsey, I started my next road trip. As we had absolutely no plans or whatsoever, we just decided to take the next best road and didn’t get disappointed!

From Christchurch, we drove all the way to New Zealand’s west coast via “Arthur’s Pass National Park”. Majestic mountains, covered in snow, wildflowers and water streams made me feel like Heidi in her Alps.

Believe it or not, we even drove through Springfield, where we found a big stature of Homer Simpson’s half-eaten donut! 😀

At some stage, we went to explore the water and slid down a natural rockslide to reach it. Surprisingly, the water was freezing cold, though and not much of a refreshment, although it was bloody hot!

Later we thought, we could actually experience the complete opposite, but unfortunately, our heli-hiking trip got cancelled, due to a cloud forming above the glacier. Instead, we explored “Hokitiki Gorge”: Turquoise waters, a swingbridge and spectacular views!

But we didn’t just want to give up on the glaciers! Unfortunately, the glaciers seemed to be playing a little game with us, though. The nearby “Fox Glacier” was basically completely covered in clouds when we were exploring the views from the beautiful “Lake Matheson”… Pretty disappointing!

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However,  we finally had more luck the next day: The heli-hike didn’t get cancelled this time! Staying in a group of five, we all had to put on wet-weather gear and walk to the helipad. It was bloody hot outside and besides that, only about 3 degrees colder on the glacier. Thus, climbing the glacier was quite exhausting in the too warm clothes, but it was still a once-in-a-lifetime experience!

First of all, I was quite glad that I survived the helicopter flight to the top of the glacier. Obviously, my motion sickness kicked in again, but luckily, the flight was only four minutes long!

When we landed on the glacier, I had expected everything other than a paradise full of ice and snow! I felt like I was in Antarctica; and this time for real! We got shown how to put on crampons and made our way up the glacier, geared up with walking poles and ice axe. It felt definitely weird walking with spikes underneath your shoes since you had to lift your shoes a lot higher, but it gave you an incredibly good grip on the ice. It was amazingly blue and crystal clear; even a Kea, an Alpine parrot got to enjoy it!

We walked a bit higher before we learned that we only have ice up here, thanks to Australia’s heat, Antarctica’s cold and New Zealand’s rain. We continued our journey even higher and higher and apparently, we had been the highest, a group has ever been up there before we headed back down again. Knowing that “Franz Josef Glacier” is the steepest commercial climable glacier, makes you definitely proud having made it almost all the way to the top! That’s another thing ticked off my bucket list!

From clear-blue ice to clear-blue pools! A couple of hundred kilometres further, we encountered Mt Aspiring’s “Blue Pools”. Deep-blue water was more than welcoming for a nice swim if it wasn’t freezing cold water.

On our way to Wanaka, we got blown away by magnificent views of snow-covered mountains and lakes continuing into Wanaka itself! We hiked up to “Diamond lake”, encountered the most colourful mountain ranges, I have ever seen, got close and personal with New Zealand’s most famous tree, also known as #thatwanakatree and did another hike up “Mt Iron” to get magnificent views over Wanaka!

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The hikes were like sent from hell: constantly uphill and purely exposed to the sun! I was dying and it really bothers me that I’m not as fit as I wished to be, but that’s life. You can’t have everything in life. Although I could work for it, obviously 😛

The famous willow tree in Wanaka is practically famous for being a single tree standing in the water. It looks beautiful and I can understand why it’s the most photographed tree in New Zealand… but I mean… The tree is probably more famous than I will ever get; just by standing in water!

Well, as if I wouldn’t have already expected it, not being famous was not the only concern, I had. We just left Wanaka and were about to drive to new adventures when we noticed a noise from underneath the car… Something was hanging loose and my suspicion, that it was the shock absorber was correct. But of course, Karma hadn’t been finished with me yet. After few more ks, I suddenly noticed that the oil lamp came on and immediately pulled over. I got out of the car and found the car completely covered in oil.

Unfortunately, we were on the middle of the highway and out of service. Thus, we had no other option than hitchhiking back to the nearest town and call the next tow truck. That was easier said than done. Obviously, my insurance didn’t cover the tow truck, which is why they made me sign up for a 12-month membership for the AA breakdown-service at a cost of 205$! I’m not even here for another 12 months!

At least, we got a good service. The mechanic, that towed us back, actually dropped us off in the middle of a caravan park in Wanaka and made sure, we will be served priority! I was lucky enough, the car is actually fixable.

However, it will cost a lot of money… In fact, I will be losing all the money I have, leaving me stranded in Wanaka with no money, car or job.

Love my life…

Dani

Check out last week’s Vlog:

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