Andrew C Arkis

Procrastinatingblogger

Andrew C Arkis

I am more then fortunate to be able to spend the next three months hiking with my brother and best friend through the country of New Zealand. Strangely however, apparently some people want to know about my adventures, which I shall try and chronicle here via pictures and updates 😊

Feel free to post comments or questions, as I will check regularly....mostly.

Nick's blog = WalkingMan

Chad's blog = tramperchad




It is with astonishment that I now type the final blog entry of my time in New Zealand; three months gone in a blink and smile. Leaving the South Island behind, we took the ferry across the Cook Straight to the North Island landing in Wellington. There, we meet up with Mark and Karen, who we began our first tramping adventure with all the way back on New Years. After a couple days in the city, we headed to the middle of the North Island for one of our final tramps around several giant (and active) New Zealand volcanoes; the Tongariro Crossing. This was track was special because we were able to get a large party of friends together from both this trip and Chad's previous expeditions. In total there were five others who joined us; ... read more


Hello again Friends! It is with mixed emotions I write that our great tramping adventures of the South Island have officially come to an end; a week in Arthur's Pass was the final hurrah! This is a sad note because it's becoming more and more real now that we must actually return to reality back home soon, but also very joyful because my body has had about enough of this. The days in the Arthur's Pass were an excellent final destination as they offered a little of everything we've done in our time here, from river stomping to alpine passes. This area of New Zealand is very epic in scale; huge sweeping valleys and giant, towering mountains stretching the land in all directions. We all noted how it kind of reminded us of Colorado, albeit much ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island March 1st 2011

There are certain things I found out I was capable of in this last tramp, many of them I never wished to have learned. The only proper way to describe this latest hike accurately is EPIC and ADVENTUROUS. For many weeks now, Ivory Lake has been mentioned in future plans with the idea we should build up to it, as it was expected to be the most difficult tramp we had available. Little did we know than that this was exactly what we had in store for us, and then cranked to eleven. We began this tramp as a party of six, being joined by three of our Christchurch friends who we hiked with over New Years. Everyone later would describe this as some of the most physically challenging and intense days of their lives. The ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Hokitika February 22nd 2011

Sup Everybody! It's been a stunning pattern to always seem to report things accomplished here as "one of the coolest things of my life", but this last tramp proved the point with gusto. Just yesterday, I was walking down the giant Frans Josef Glacier, easily being one of the most amazing experiences of my life. It was a constant feeling of exhilaration from the combo of doing something a little dangerous, while still not ever feeling like you were going to die. We had some knowledge of what we were doing, and most of the gear people would suggest, but still conquered the Glacier and hiked up it to a remote, seldom used hut (Castle Rock) sitting on a ridge line with amazing views. According to a few calculations we could muster between us, an estimated ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island February 15th 2011

Hello All! The last couple of days have been taken pretty easy (relatively speaking) in terms of tramping; we traveled up the west coast completing a two-night stay at Mt. Brewster and a one night stop on the Copland track. The first tramp was a 3000 foot uphill stretch to the base of Mt. Brewster, where we were treated to beautiful valley sights and the excellent view of the Brewster glacier. It is here where we first met the 'Allies' of this post; ironically three climbers at the hut were from none other than Ohio, one of which now lives in Breckenridge CO! Apparently, it is a small world, after all. Chad, having most of the proper equipment and the least fear of death, climbed to the summit of Mt. Brewster on the second day amongst ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island » Stewart Island February 9th 2011

Hey Everybody! It's been a little while since my last post, this mostly due to the latest amazing tramp we completed! Below the southern island of New Zealand is an even smaller and more remote island called, Steward Island. This is a unique destination because of the natural wild birds and plant-life which is much closer to how the main islands use to be. Also exciting about this track is the shear scale of it; in all it took us 10 days and nearly 100 kilometers to finish! Fortunately for us, the entire track featured back-country huts, saving us the need of carrying tents, but the weight was more then made up for in food alone. It's also quite mentally pleasing to know that at the end of a long day was a warm and dry ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island January 26th 2011

Hello all! It is with great pleasure that I write now, after successfully completing what is considered a difficult tramp by New Zealand standards; Five Passes. It is much like it sounds, five mountain passes through a mostly unmarked route, each section offering its own unique and difficult challenges. I have no doubt that the path we chose was the best approach, as each pass seemed to one-up the previous as far as the views went, supplying us with countless amazing photos and memories that will last a life time. The only negative to our route was several descents that could be described as disturbing in nature, with a slight chance of painful and certain bodily injury border-lining...death. However, I am happy to report everyone managed to emerge from this adventure with no serious injuries only ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island January 16th 2011

Some people reading through our blogs have noted mention of Chad having some of his "night episodes" that many are already familiar with. In short, for those who don't know, Chad has an amazing occasional habit of crying out some bizarre nonsense brought on by his dreams, and thus extremely hilarious for those of normal minds around him to witness these events. So far, there have been two incidents that I was aware of on this trip: 1. One night at a camp in the town of Wanaka, we were settling into our tents for sleep. Chad was already very sick with a cold that day, and this maybe played into his madness to follow; we put him in a tent by himself with the hope the cold wouldn't spread (futile). At roughly 11:00pm or so, ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island January 16th 2011

I want to take an opportunity to reflect on a recent occurrence in my life here in New Zealand that is significant in its rarity. Since my arrival to this wonderful place, I....read.....a...book. And not just a book mind you full of pictures and such (my usual fare), but an epic monster tallying over 900 pages. I'll give those who passed out from this news a second to recover, as I was confused with the event myself. There. So, what's interesting here is that this book has two more sequels, which I already own waiting in the safety of my house in Colorado, however, they are difficult to read from that distance. Now I didn't think to bring these other two books, because lets be honest, I figured to be a new pages into the current ... read more

Oceania » New Zealand » South Island January 16th 2011

So, I have now been in New Zealand for almost twenty days, and all of those days have been filled with laughter, sights, and amazement. When considering the tramping part of my journey here, an interesting and alarming trend has emerged that I desperately hope to rectify soon; thus far, we have attempted three different back country tracks, and as of now....only one of them has been successfully completed. While this isn't necessarily failing, it's impressive to see how quickly situation and health can alter the immediate plan and set forth a new adventure. This time, we were beginning a notoriously difficult track (often advising Americans away), called Dusky Sound. From the very start, the walk was very hard for me specifically as I had came unto the full effect of a cold that had been ... read more




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