South Island Road Trip - Vol. 3

A visit to New Zealand’s South Island just isn’t complete without a trip to the glaciers, and with the latter dramatically retreating due to global warming it looks like we won’t be able to properly experience them for long.

Day 3, and after Wanaka we headed to Fox, where we spent the night before hiking up the glacier. The village is set into the forested foothills of the Southern Alps and close  enough to Lake Matheson- one of the most photographed lakes in New Zealand (win!). Although on a tight schedule we made time to see the lake the next morning before our heli-hike, and I am so glad we did. Looking out at the lake with wisps of mist floating on top of the water while the sun was breaking through the clouds on the horizon was incredibly beautiful!

Lake Matheson

An hour later we were at Fox Guides’ reception, gearing up whilst waiting for the green light for our helicopter ride. In groups of 5 we boarded our choppers and were flown up to the upper reaches of Fox Glacier. Immediately, we were greeted with unbelievable views of both the glacier valley and the glacier stretching up the mountainside. Once the chopper departed, we were fitted out with crampons (boot spikes) and off we went!

Our really cool guide, Ross, coming all the way from Scotland

We spent the next couple of hours climbing through vibrant blue ice caves, crevasses and out of moulins (deep ice holes), quenching our thirst with ice-cold water which we scooped up and drank straight from our palms.

What an absolute surreal experience that was, I swear I would go back and do it again in a heartbeat!

Thanks for reading!