Milford Track

14Apr09

Hi

The day after yesterday’s predecessor was tomorrow to the day in which I finished the Milford Track. (work that one out!)

For anyone of you readers who does not know what the Milford Track is, I will tell you. It is a four day walk which goes a total of thirty-three and a half miles. This doesn’t actually sound that far, we had a 16 mile school walk once, and that was finished in about four hours, so you could estimate this to take just eight hours. But the terrain is stony and wet, not like the cycle path we went down on the school walk. It’s also dangerous. Some places have warning signs saying things like ‘Avalanche Zone – No Stopping For Next 400m”, and this area is infamous for it’s flooding – there can behundreds of millimetres of rain in just a few hours. In fact, last Monday walkers had to be helicoptered out due to waist-high water on the paths. On the third day, you have to go over the Mackinnon pass, which means going half a kilometre directly upwards, and another Kilometer down. Here’s a pic:

p1060057

This is the Mackinnon Pass climb, and also gives you an idea of  both the track conditions and the weather we did it in (this is not our photo, however). And this is for all those of you think I’m a lazy slob: On this steep climb, I started off at the back and overtook 27 people (not including family) on the way up. I was so fast some people thought I had actually run! My Dad is at work at the mo, but we will get his pictures soon and post them. I am also waiting for someone else who was on the walk to email me some pictures of me at the top, so I can prove I was actually there. Unfortunately, my family cannot prove they got the top, as my Dad’s phone had stopped working by then. But, between you and me, I don’t think they deserve a picture at the top considering how slowly they walked: I was at the pass hut (picture below) more than an hour before them, but had to wait.

passhut

More stuff coming, like pics and stuff. Stuff.

NYAQ (Not Yet Asked Questions):

Did we make it? Yes
Did we enjoy it? Yes
Was it awesome? Yes
Were you tired at the end? Yes
Do your feet hurt? Yes
Why did we do it? Because it’s the best walk in the world
Are you doing it again? Maybe…
Tomorrow? No
Did you see a Kea? No
Did you at least hear a Kea? Yes
Did you lose stuff? Probably, but we haven’t found out yet…
Did it rain? Yes
A lot? Not really, just on the third day
Did you go the cheap way or the soft way? The cheap way, of course
Did you see anything uniquely NZ? Loads, especially the Weka
Were you awesome? Of course I was!

If you have any more questions, do not hesitate to pester me with them. But check I haven’t answered them already!

Also, a Kea and a Weka are birds. Here they are (Kea first):

450px-kea

weka_15390

The Weka were really tame. I will show you a photo next time Dad took using no zoom at all, a real close-up. Meanwhile, Kea are extremely destructive birds, and spend most of their time doing something like this (also notice the bright orange underwings):

keaeatingrentalcar

This is basically what it did to our rental car when we came here last time.

On a pretty much entirely non-related subject, I have started a new rubishy blog! It is all thanks to Grandad who came up with the name “Wordsworth’s New Blog”, and here\’s the link!

Also, here’s an illegally uploaded (by me) song for all of those who don’t know who the Finn Brothers are:

http://download554.mediafire.com/ptui932tmmwg/jyvn3mgn30g/05+Don’t+Dream+It’s+Over.wma

We are going to see yellow-eyed penguins thisafternoon, so I have to log off now.

Keep commenting!

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9 Responses to “Milford Track”

  1. 1 mastert123

    So… Birds.
    Stop my beating heart.

    Well that explains your blogging absence.
    It’s been hell without it.
    In place of writing silly comments, I’ve been crying.
    A lot.
    I stare at your blog.
    Repeatedly pressing ‘Refresh’…
    My life had a hole in it.

    A blog shaped hole…

    • 2 psycholera

      Could you please draw me a picture of a blog shaped hole…

  2. 3 mastert123

    That was a joke by the way.
    Just to clarify.
    People were getting worried.

  3. 4 Grandad

    I see you passed 27 people on the McKinnon Ascent, not including family. I assume there were 40 walkers altogether in your party (max permitted). Therefore there must have been 20 people who passed YOU, or did they set off before you? Please clarify.

    Congratulations on completing the MT. Your commentary makes a great read.

    • 5 psycholera

      Me and my family started right at the back. I overtook 27 people on the way up. I waited for them in the pass hut. By the time we left, we were last again.
      So those 27-odd people arrived after me at the pass hut, but left before me because I had to stay and wait for my family.
      I wouldn’t call it overtaking as such…

  4. 6 Terry

    What no library? where do they get their fun?

  5. 8 Lucie

    Terribly behind on keeping up with your blog as some of us have to work for a living!! Spending the bank holiday marking BSc student essays in between doing the odd spot of gardening.

    You sound very proud of your achievements re the Milford track. I guess you have totally forgotton your previous groans about doing such a hike (I guess you were put off by the thought of several hours hiking over a few days). Glad you can appreciate God’s beautiful if not somewhat treacherous terrain. It very much reminded me of a hike I did some years ago when I was reasonably fit and 20 years younger, perhaps even fool hardy!! A group of us started out at Lake Louise near Banff in Canada. The first part of the hike (approx 6 km) took us to the plain of six glaciers to where there was a most welcome teahouse serving all kinds of sustenance (built in 1924 for Swiss moutaineers). I can remember climbing being very tiring because of the altitude, you rise from 5000 to 7000 ft during this stretch of the walk. We were not quite prepared for the next bit, where the trail goes up 2000 feet in just 2 km! This was also very scary becuase an avalanhce occurred which only missed us by a few feet (I have never prayed so hard in my life). One member of our party got wedged under a rock that had became dislodged as a result of the avalanhce. It required the strength of all 10 of us to move the rock. I will have to dig out my photos to show you evidence of this walk. Anyway you can see the sort of view we got from the url below.

    http://www.pbase.com/geniza/image/47079147

    Will be in touch again shortly for some more comments to your blog. Ps got your postcard the other day.

    • 9 psycholera

      That sounds scary. On the Milford Track we passed through several areas where the whole forest had been just wiped out by avalanches, about 20m wide and a few kilometres long. There were just uprooted trees spread everywhere and small streams. Nobody has ever died on the Milford Track, though.

      You don’t need proof. I believe you.


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