Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Milford Sound

We have been in Milford Sound in the New Zealand Fiordland. No mobile signal so no blog (or emails) for 2 days!

The day we arrived (early afternoon) the weather was great, blue skies and a few clouds and high tide. I rushed around taking lots of photos before the clouds rolled in. The conditions were still good so we decided to take a cruise along Milford Sound. Jolly quiet at this time of year, only 4 others on the 2 O'clock sailing, a large boat too.

Windy on way down fiord but good views to peaks and falls. Had quite a close view of a Fiordland Crested Penguin, the rarest penguin in the world, allegedly. Then lots of New Zealand Fur Seals basking in the sunshine on some rocks. Then a free shower as the boat went very close to Stirling Falls.

The water was very choppy so the boat was going up and down a bit. Had to use a fast shutter speed of at least 1/125 or mostly 1/250 with the lens wide open as didn't need any depth of field. Bit of spray too so kept hand over lens hood until ready to take shot to avoid having to dry lens before each shot. Lot smoother on the return.

Took some low tide shots on return then into the Blue Duck for a beer or two and some dinner. We stayed in the only accommodation at Milford Sound, Milford Sound Lodge. This felt more like a Youth Hostel than a hotel but had a nice feel to it and helpful friendly staff.

Yesterday was another good day with blue skies and some cloud. We started with breakfast at the Blue Duck after I had taken quite a few images on the beach. There was a bit of a breeze so no reflections on the open water but there were lots of pools of water and I used these for reflections of Mitre Peak and the Sound. I felt quite lucky to get these as it was quite a windy place.

We intended to walk to Gertrude Saddle (1400m) but there was too much snow and high avalanche risk so we turned back at 1110m, between some waterfalls and Black Lake. The waterfalls were great, very shapely with huge snowfields downstream of it, bit like a moraine bank with snow underneath.

Then we stopped at the Chasm where a river runs down a narrow gorge, difficult to photograph as the bridge across was obscuring the shot! Then down to Milford Sound at what was just 1.5h after high tide, in fact it was well on the way to low tide. More shots of the Sound. Then it was Blue Duck pub time again! Lots of good pictures in the bag from the day.

Today we left early in rain and headed south. Now we are on way east to Moeraki for some beach shots. Hot and sunny now we are away from the mountains and it is just after midday.
Post a Comment