To Franz Josef

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September 28th 2015
Published: September 30th 2015
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Dean jumped in the driver's seat, much to the girl's dismay, for the trip to Franz Josef. Winding our way up the mountains, past Coronet Peak (where the girls relived their skiing adventures once again) and with sensational views across to the Remarkables, we said goodbye to Queenstown and hello to glacier country. With no radio reception, the soundtrack accompanying our journey had the girls reaching for their headphones. The three CDs purchased at the Queenstown Salvos (from a VERY ORDINARY collection, mind you) were not worth the $6 we forked out. 'Rule Britannia - 40 years of great British music' could also be renamed as '11 bands you know playing 11 songs you don't'. That particular CD had the girls almost declaring a mutiny. The Tony Bennett & k. d. Lang 'wonderful world, sing-a-long of 12 timeless Louis Armstrong classics' consisted of 12 horrendous arrangements, thanks T-Bone Burnett. Even 'The spirit of Christmas '96' CD couldn't cheer us up. Snow capped mountains would have provided the perfect background to some carolling but the overproduced vocals of Australasian musicians had us driving without musical accompaniment until the radio sprang to life just before we arrived.
We stopped at Lake Wanaka to stretch our legs, marvel at the vista and install me as driver. The non-violent revolution ensured circulation could return to Dayna's legs, the sickbags would remain unused and Dean could sightsee without endangering our lives.
Stopping at Blue Pools for lunch and a quick walk with the rest of the tourists doing the circuit of the island, the scenery was not unlike that of a certain Gippsland forest back home. Which had us remembering how we got lost last year. The blue markers here looked more permanent and the track was very well laid out - no chance of us stumbling into the undergrowth.
Arriving at Fox Glacier by 4pm, after what seemed like driving through an endless car commercial, Dean was super keen on visiting it so we wouldn't have to drive back the next day. Somewhat unprepared, we headed up and up and up on what is a now familiar landscape of grey stones. It took about 45 minutes to get within 200 metres of this huge river of ice and didn't we hear about it! Good luck in outdoor ed, girls.

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