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Vacations » '19 - New Zealand
Keplar Track
Our last full day in New Zealand was spent in Te Anau, following our few days in Milford Sound, and on our way back to Queenstown for our departure from NZ. Unlike the point-to-point routes of the Milford and Routeburn tracks, the Keplar track is a 3-4 day, roughly 60km loop with a trailhead not far from Te Anau. We knew we couldn’t do the whole loop, so we decided on a section, heading southward or clockwise on the track.
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Queenstown Hill
After our morning hike/walk around Lake Alta, we wanted to get out and stretch our legs a bit more. This walk was a great option. And while it’s name suggests something small, compared to say, Queenstown Mountain, or Queenstown Summit, this walk amounted to about 1500ft elevation gain over about 2 miles – not insignificant. As we’d been experiencing, NZ had many “big bang for the buck” hikes – Queenstown Hill was no exception. The trailhead was literally in a
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Lake Marian
After the torrential rains and winds we experienced the day before, we were blessed with another beautiful day as we left Milford Sound. Packing up and saying goodbye to the area, we headed out, stopping for one final look at the tunnel separating what felt like serenity from the rest of the world. Shortly afterward, we arrived at the trailhead parking area and got geared up. Heading out, we see, surprise, a bridge and stream crossing! As we’ve been coming
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Ben Lomond Track
This was our first full day in New Zealand – and while we’d been on the other side of the world for a few days already, we were still a bit off. Even so, we wanted to get out on the trail – and this trek had a starting point which was within walking distance from our AirBnB (remember, driving in NZ is different – we were still getting the swing of that left-side-of-the-road thing, so it really wasn’t something we wanted
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Roy’s Peak Track
Early research showed this was another track with some stunning photos – listed as one of the best day hikes.    Located only about an hour north of Queenstown, just outside of Wanaka, this would be our first significant drive on the left-hand side of the road – and our first venture out into the country-side. We were blessed with another day of cloudless skies and moderate (70’s) temperatures.  As we’d come to learn , our first few days in
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Routeburn Track
After a few days centered in Queenstown, we wanted to branch out a bit – try to experience some of the famed Great Walks of New Zealand. Nearest to Queenstown is the Routeburn Track, typically a 3-4 day point-to-point trek which makes its way through the Humboldt mountains. The plan was to begin at the Routeburn Shelter trailhead, north of Glenorchy, make our way to the Routeburn Falls hut, and return on the same path – roughly a 12 mile
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Milford Track
It was the Milford track, and the connection with Jeanne’s hometown of Milford Connecticut, that really sparked this whole trip. No, we’re not going to create a list of all the “Milford” locations in the world, but this was really peaked our interest – Milford, trekking, vacation – a trifecta of enjoyment! The Milford Track is one of the premier great walks of New Zealand. It is a 4 day, 53km journey through the Fiordland National Park on the south
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Lake Alta
This began our fifth full day in New Zealand. We’d had three solid days of trekking, on the Ben Lomond, Roy’s Peak, and Routeburn tracks, each with some fairly significant mileage and elevation gain, followed by a full “zero” day, where we enjoyed some local vineyards and a touristy visit to Arrowtown. We were looking for a bit easier day – not quite a “zero”, but something without the bigger elevation and mileage numbers.  Lake Alta sounded like a perfect
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Far, Far Away
This was a very special year – with a birthday which is divisible by 10. The birthday request? Be out of the country, somewhere far away on the day. So, in typical fashion, that started the planning wheels spinning. Planning actually started a year in advance. Our love for the outdoors and hiking made New Zealand a real draw – not to mention things like their Great Walks, the Milford Track, and the big bonus of it being early summer
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