the trip part 8: arthur’s pass

After several days of near constant rain we finally got the idea and planned an escape. We “made tracks” all the way to Arthur’s Pass. Past Fox and Franz Josef glaciers, through the great scenery (concealed by sheets of rain). Yep, we were ready for a change.

We retreated for a few days to a friend’s bach at Bealey Spur. Great spot, this – good views of the east side of the Alps, peaceful and quiet, with a woodburner. This happened to be good timing, since Eilidh had picked up a bug and this was the perfect place for her recovery.

(That’s Eilidh, all snuggled up in the corner):

The braided river seen from the bach is the Waimakariri.

The Bealey Top Hut – an original musterer’s nearly at treeline, a couple hour’s walk from our bach:

The Kea met us en masse at Arthur’s pass. For you non-Kiwis, this bird is infamous for its curiosity and mischievousness, known to pick apart, pry off, or carry away anything from shoes to backpacks to protruding bits of trim on cars, and then cackle heartily.

They like to swagger up behind you, eyeing your car with evil intent as you attempt to take photos of their comrades. If you turn around before they reach you, often they’ll coyly look down and pretend to be innocently concentrating on some bit of pavement. But never doubt that glint in their eyes.

“Hey Harry, do it quick – the guy’s still trying to get a photo of me. Hahahaha.”


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