Saturday, October 28, 2023

Day 8 Fox Glacier to Haast

Distance: 120 km (+ a few to get to and from town)
Time: 6 hours 12 minutes (plus a few more to get to and from town)
Travel Modalities: Cycling

I seem to have twisted an ankle on a glowworm walk in the dark last night in Fox Glacier. I didn't see any gloworms, but I did see a possum carrying a baby on her back. That was cute. I'm impressed with how well the phone takes photos in the dark.
It is barely above freezing an hour into the ride. I stop at a shelter at the start of the Copland Track to warm up and eat chocolate. There is a bus schedule. If I wait an hour, I can be on a bus to Queenstown. I would do this, but I've already paid for tonight's hotel.
I ride through moutain passes, rimu forests, and cow pastures. I had thought the rest of my journey would be inland, but I start seeing signs for "photo spot Bruce's Bay 8 km". I count down the km, until I get to a sign that reads "photo spot next 2 km" so I don't know if I took this photo in the correct place.
61 km into the ride, I reach the first open establishment serving, well anything. Aside from unmanned free range egg stands (which I consider buying and eating raw), there is nothing at all. The ooen establishment is a salmon farm. 
They have a cafe. I order a side of salmon with my eggs. 
This appears to be a stop for tourist busses on the way to Queenstown. The place is empry when I get there, and packed with Australians when I leave. One of them takes my picture, because I don't have any in my winter gear and probably will never wear this much again.
I stop at Lake Pariga. The sandflies are agressive and manage to instantly find the few parts of my body not covered by cycling gear. There's a couole meditating in mosquito nets. I steal their souls withiut asking permission.
 I stop at what I think is Shipwreck Cove, or something like that. There are short walks in all directions I'm supposed to do, but my ankle likes walking even less than biking. Theres an elevated platform that promises views. They are incredible in all directions. 
Climbing up is terifying, particularly in bike cleats. I calculate how likely I am to die on the way down.
I stop at the i-site, which my route guide says is the best attaction in Haast. It is built inside of the wetlands. 
I am perturbed to see that I've booked a hotel 3 km from town. There's not too much to the town of Haast, so this wouldn't be a problem except 1) I'm out of food, and the meager store selling food is in town and 2) The Monteith's Tour gave me a coupon for a beer in a West Coast pub. I've been carrying it for 350 km waiting for a pub to line up with somewhere I can safely have a pint. Haast is my first and last chance. I am more than a litle.unhappy to be back on the bike. 

Relive video I'm not making one of the ride to and from town unless there's super high demand.

1 comment:

VeeDrexel said...

From distant memory, the store’s food is mostly frozen. Unless it’s ice cream you are after, probably not missing as much as you may have imagined