Day 82: Queenstown to Milford Sound

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February 17th 2010
Published: March 2nd 2010
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Day 82: Wednesday, February 17th, 2010
Queenstown, New Zealand to Milford Sound.

Per Contiki brochure: "Need an adrenalin boost? We'll take you to a bridge to jump off! The bungee jumping bridge provides a hair-raising, gob-stopping adrenalin rush. It is one of the options on this tour that separates the tourists from the purists. Pure fun. Pure rush. Why don't you try it? After this we travel to Fiordland National Park, where we head through the Homer Tunnel (D'OH!) for our first view of Mitre Peak and Milford Sound. Then it's all aboard the Milford Wanderer for an overnight cruise taking in all the beauty of the fjord. There's the chance to kayak and see whales, dolphins and penguins along with towering mountains and breathtaking waterfalls. It'll be an evening to treasure!"

We left Queenstown in the morning and headed over to the final excursion- the last bungee jump. Most on the tour were doing the jump, the rest of us were going to watch and cheer them on. I was able to elbow my way to the front of the viewing deck, despite the many Asians who could have cared less that it was our group about to jump. Jen, Tara, Jess and Becky (Australia) all took the plunge with Jen and Tara doing a tandem. I'm proud of you all, and I still don't regret not doing it. When it looked like our group was pretty much done jumping I moved out of the way (stop shoving me!!) and walked onto the bridge where they were jumping from. Oh, wait, there was one more jump to go- Naked Contiki. Two of the girls from the group had stripped down to just panties, written "Naked Contiki 2010" and "Woop Woop Boom!" (a kind of mantra for our group) on their backs/bellies/arms, and were going to do a topless tandem. They've got guts, I'll give them that.

We all got back on the bus and headed to Milford Sound (which is actually fjords but were misnamed as "sounds") where we're going to take an overnight cruise. Along the way we stopped in a very pretty field where Emmo said was a great spot to get a picture of us jumping. Yup, a lot of people got a cool shot of them jumping into the mountains. Not me. Why not? Because I can't jump. My brain has this ability blocked and instead it uses that space to remember the name of Steve Guttenberg movies. I once had a trainer in L.A. (stop laughing) and one of the exercises she wanted me to do to was to keep my feet together and jump up onto a very low platform. I stared at it for about 3 minutes and made jerking little movements with my bodies, but I couldn't do it. I can kind of jump if i can lift one leg than another, but as the picture shows, I'm still not very good with that. Plus I make the worlds most ridiculous Corky from "Life Goes On" face while I concentrate and try to jump. So, enjoy that shot, I know I have. We also stop at a stream at one point and we all fill up our water bottles. The water here is amazing and so clean. Here's hoping we human's don't fuck that up.

We get to Milford Sound and get onto our boat/hotel for the night, the Milford Wanderer. The girls are directed down the first staircase and the boys go to the front of the boat (bow? stern? whatever) and take that staircase. Down below, there is a small room with a long table and little tiny rooms that branch from this room. Our door was a drape and 4 bunk beds were in each... well, closet for lack of a better way to explain the space. Typical sailor quarters probably. We head back up to the main deck and soon the boat takes off and we're all treated with some amazing mushroom soup to help us warm up (a little gray and drizzly). I head out on the deck where the boat's nature guide is on the microphone telling everyone about the area. My favorite quote from this portion of the trip was Becky saying, "Hey nature lady, what's that black shit on the rocks?" 😊 Well said. Many pretty waterfalls but I guess there are hundreds/thousands more when they've actually had a good rainfall. Beautiful mountains and amazing fog everywhere. We drop anchor in one cove and some of us get onto the boats dingy (hehe) and are driven around the coast and find out more about the area. The ones with more energy hopped on some kayaks and paddled around the coast as well.

We head inside for dinner and afterwards we all remain on the main deck either talking or playing cards. Us girls plus David got a game of cards going (don't know the name- Jen and Tara taught us) and 45 minutes later we were still playing the first hand. it's one of those games that those that are out have the ability to get back in. Dinner wasn't exactly agreeing with me so I handed over my hand that wouldn't die to Becky and bid them goodnight. I worked on the blog briefly but shortly after, Tara, Jen and Alex came down and we all crashed on our bunks.

Additional photos below
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5th March 2010

You were waiting for naked skydiving to be adventurous?
Well, what WAS the black shit on the rocks?!?

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