June 20, 2008

Heading south

We left Fox Village township at about 4pm after returning from Fox Glacier and having had a quick lunch. Lake Matheson is just 6km west of Fox Village and is famous for its mirror-like reflections of Mt Cook and Mt Tasman in its crystal waters. Thinking that it would just be a couple of minutes away, we headed to Lake Matheson.
Cows grazing near the car park of Lake Matheson
What we didn’t realize was that we had to walk through native forests that encircled the lake to get to the point called Reflection Island, where we could enjoy the magnificent view. And so we walked, and we walked and we walked, and after 30 minutes of walking, Reflection Island was still nowhere to be seen. We met a couple who decided to turn back as they had been walking for more than 30 minutes to no avail. I was getting worried as our journey to Queenstown would take at least five hours and we would be driving on unfamiliar routes. We almost wanted to turn back as mum’s knee was also giving her problems due to the strenuous glacier walk in the morning. But mum heroically said we should push on as we won’t be back in New Zealand any time soon. After another 10 minutes, we finally reached Reflection Island but the weather didn’t do us any favour and the view of the mountains was obscured by thick clouds.

The trail leading to Reflection Island - does this look like something from the LOTR trilogy?
View from the Reflection Island - all we could see was the clouds above

Luckily, we took only about 20 minutes to get back to the car park, as we had already walked 2/3 of the way on the boardwalk that encircled the lake. We then made our way south over the rugged terrain of the coast. The route passes some of the most stunning coastal scenic stops, but since it was already getting dark and Queenstown was five hours away, we didn’t stop to take any photos

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