Around the World 2003-2005
Hiking New Zealand (part 1)
What's New
Itinerary Page
Robinson Crusoe Island, Fiji
Feejee Experience
Pictures, Fiji
Auckland, New Zealand
Wellington, New Zealand
Hiking New Zealand (part 1)
Hiking New Zealand (part 2)
Queenstown, New Zealand
Milford Sound, New Zealand
Manapouri, New Zealand
Bridges and Buildings of Sydney, Australia
A Few Friends in Sydney
Boracay, Philippines
Vientiane and Vang Vieng, Laos
Luang Prabang and Muang Ngoi, Laos
Trekking in Laos
Hong Kong
The Questions
Sneak Peek
European Travel Links
Contact Info

West Coast Wilderness Trip
December 16th to the 25th, 2003

I joined New Zealand Nature Safaris for a 10 day trek down the West Coast of the South Island.
Link to New Zealand Nature Safaris:
Link to the West Coast Trip:

In addition to the guide, there were 10 other hikers.
Guide:  Nick Groves
  1. Vera Browne, UK
  2. Karen Greenslade, UK
  3. Sarah Willett, UK
  4. Jason Dent, USA
  5. Karen Shrode, USA
  6. Matthew Hatvany, Canada
  7. Guy Vingerheets, Belgium
  8. Marlies Veenstra, Netherlands
  9. Marc Cherix, Switzerland
  10. Vreni Kurmann, Switzerland

Day 1
Assemble the group for a 4 hour hike to the rock shelter where we will be spending the night.

Day 1: Reviewing the Map After Lunch

Day 2
Hike up Gordon's Pyramid

Day 2: Vera and I Comparing Backpacks

Day 2: Group Photo Near Sinkholes

Day 2: Karen in the Forest

Day 2: Gordon's Pyramid, Marc and Marlies

Day 3
In the morning after visiting the breeding seal colony at Cape Foulwind we started a two day hike up to the massive Ballroom Overhang.

Day 3: Cape Foulwind Sign Post

Day 3: Focus Creek, Nick and Vreni

Day 4 -- The Day of Caves
After a very short walk from the Ballroom, we dropped our packs for a short hike to an underground stream.  The plan was to swim through the dark cave to the other side.  Everyone gasped when they entered the icy water.  Because the water was so cold, I found it difficult to breath.  After a short numbing swim, we made it to the otherside took a quick look around and returned.  Once out of the water, it took a few minutes before I could feel my feet again.
We returned to our packs and headed down river for several river crossings.  Most of them were only up to the knees, but there were a few times when the water was up to my waist.
With the river crossings finished, we scrambled up a steep ravine to another cave.  This cave was filled with stalactites and stalagmites.

Day 4: Nick Points Out Another Bird

Day 4: Nick Preparing Another Story

Day 4: Pancake Rocks

Day 4: Pancake Rocks, Matt, Jason, Karen S., Marlies

Day 4: Marc and the Van at the Campsite

Day 5
The Franz Josef Glacier

Day 5: Franz Josef Glacier -- Jason, Vreni, Matt, Marc, Karen S, Karen G, Vera, Marlies, Guy, Sarah

Day 5: Descending the Franz Josef Glacier

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