New Zealand Blog April 1st, 2016

April 02, 2016 at 4:30 AM

Queenstown to Milford Sound

Today we spent the entire day photographing and sailing on the glacial waters around Milford Sound and the Fiordland National Park. We left Queenstown early this morning for the drive around the lakes and through the glacial mountains to Milford Sound.  As the crow flies it’s a very short distance but to drive is 3 1/2 hours one way. The drive and the time in the park were all very rewarding. There are photo opportunities at every corner as you travel through this region.

The weather was a bit rainy when we started out this morning but by the time we arrived at Milford Sound it had cleared up and we were ready for another great day here in New Zealand. Our the ships captain even took us under some of the large waterfalls along the sound. After our cruise we took our time traveling back through the park photographing waterfalls, rivers and mountain streams. Tomorrow we spend the day around Queenstown. Enjoy todays selection of photographs.

First two Photos for todays .... “The Hat”

Does this first image look like an emotional shot???  Well it was ...  Captured by Alexa Coupland at the moment of the tragedy. After 11 plus years of traveling with the iconic Trekkers Hat that every photographer has come to recognize since we started traveling, now lies at the bottom of Milford Sound under a waterfalls. Kinda fitting if there was a place to loose it. The gusts of wind from the waterfall took it off my head and blew it up over the deck and into the water. I think Alexa captured the emotion on my face very well. Thanks for sharing the shot Alexa.


Alexa also captured the last minute before it sank to the bottom at the base of the falls. There was no time to recover it before it sank. Thanks again for your image and quick captures, Alexa.


Enough said ... on with todays blog. This was the view as we entered the fiord. The clouds added to the effect of our photography today.


One of the many mountain top waterfalls as we sailed along. Some two and three times the height of Niagara Falls.


As we approached some of these waterfalls the captain took the ship right under.


Some choose to stay behind the glass roof. Gail taking a shot.


Another view looking down the sound you can see the many waterfalls. Sanford, Don and Paul are in the foreground of this shot.


The clouds hugged the mountains today.


This is another waterfalls we got up close to and the one that my hat now lies at the bottom of ....


The sun would break through and light up the sides of the fiord.


The docks at Milford Sound as we sailed past.


The view deep into the valley and canyons beyond.


This gives you an idea of the height of the waterfalls.


Don and Joan at the bow of the ship. Don is becoming a GoPro expert on this tour.


The New Zealand fur seals like the still waters in the sound.


Another view of one of the many waterfalls.


You must capture a selfie as you sail through Milford Sound.


The last on one of the strongest waterfalls as we returned to the dock. All this water is glacial run off and rain from the mountain tops.


This was our ship for the afternoon.


A view from the docks.


Will all the rain lately the rivers and streams are very full and fast moving.


This river and the one in the image above were only 300 feet apart.


This is the mirror lakes of Fiords National Park.


Many beautiful reflection shots.


Many of the mountains were covered with brush and trees.


A shot as we drove back to Queenstown this evening.


An HDR B&W of the Mirror Lakes.


More spring water, we sampled some from the stream.


The last shot of the evening was the beautiful sunset as we traveled back to Queenstown. 


More photography tomorrow as we continue our New Zealand Adventure. Good night from Queenstown, New Zealand from James and all the Trekkers.


Please add a comment

Posted by Bill on
Sorry to hear the story of the hat. I've followed that hat on many tours James.
Posted by Ron on
Now what will be do, that's how I always found the group in a crowd or following through airports!
Posted by Patti on
Not the hat!!!!!
Posted by Patti on
It'll be ok on sunny days. Trekker scan follow the glare off of the top of your head!
Posted by Deb on
Our family will be thinking of you on this sad day. But wait, I think you are in one of the best places to find an original. I see a shopping trip in the cards.
Posted by Michelle Rondeau on
Oh NOOO!!! The iconic hat ... lost. (sniff!) A tragedy indeed! Alexa, I commend you and thank you for your quick thinking and action in getting those memorable shots! Please accept my sympathy, James and troupe. May you find a replacement that you love. Hugs...
Posted by Jette on
Probably time to trade it in!!! Find a new one down there! Love the stories and pictures...Jette and Ray
Posted by Claudia on
Oh NO! Not THE hat! You need to replace it quickly, and one from NZ would be a perfect choice.

Can't wait to see the next cHApTer in this tragic event.

You can do it!
Posted by Erla on
Come On Lottery numbers.....
I Need money to go on these AMAZING trips!!!!
(but so glad I can see it thru everyone's lens!!!)
Posted by Sandy on
Sorry to hear about your hat, I've followed it down many a trails over the years. Here's to a new find and following it for many more years.
Posted by dave chidley on
A moment of silence for the hat.
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