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A Walk Through Middle Earth

No thunderstorm would stop MTM and me from hiking New Zealand’s Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park. Thunder claps rattled the moraine as we climbed for a peek at Tasman Glacier. We were lightning rods when we finally traversed the top, and found ourselves staring, not at a ribbon of ice, but at a lake the color of churned flour.

Global warming has caused severe glacial retreat in Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park. Tasman Lake did not exist until 1974. In forty years, the lake has sprawled and deepened to accommodate boating excursions in warmer months.

Given the turbulent weather, we remained ashore. Watched the fog breathe. And tried to imagine a hobbit greeting us around the next bend.


To see photos from our Tasman Glacier hike, follow this link: Andra Watkins Tumblr

18 Comments Post a comment
  1. I am deeply involved with NZ at the moment. As you may have heard, if you’re still in NZ, the English Rugby side are currently there to play a series of test matches. The All Blacks are licking their lips as we have a very weakened team (more like the “Forlorn Hope” than a team), and they are the World Champions…not ideal. I shall be watching the game from 8.00 am French time tomorrow morning……fingernails will be my breakfast:)

    June 6, 2014
  2. The photos of New Zealand here and on Tumblr are breath-taking. What a terrific vacation!

    June 6, 2014
  3. Better a thunderstorm than the horrible heat we have here !

    June 6, 2014
  4. Finally, Hobbits! 😉 Hope the trip has taken a turn for the better and that you and MTM are having a great time.

    June 6, 2014
  5. I would love to visit there! Glad you’re enjoying your trip! I’ve been watching the behind the scenes documentaries for the Hobbit movies. New Zealand is beautiful!

    June 6, 2014
  6. Filthy Hobbitses! (Sorry, couldn’t help meself)
    When I was in California I used to hike through Muir Woods quite a bit, which is where they filmed the Ewok stuff from Return of the Jedi (but you knew that, you read my book).
    I used to keep an eye out for Ewoks…. only ever saw two….

    June 6, 2014
  7. I would think an elf is more likely…say Arwen contemplating going west and living forever or staying and becoming mortal.

    June 6, 2014
  8. Nothing gives me the willies more than walking while lightning bolts are active. Thanks for the willie fest.

    June 6, 2014
  9. Coolness. I’m digging this.

    June 6, 2014
  10. tarakianwarrior #

    My parents went to NZ for vacation a few years back and fell in love with it. I fell in love with it when I first watched Eragon. Such gorgeous country. Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy…and if anyone can pull every ounce of gorgeousness out of this place, it will be you and MTM. Thank you for sharing your “honeymoon” with us. 🙂

    June 6, 2014
  11. I really want to meet an Ent.

    June 6, 2014
  12. What a beautiful place.

    June 6, 2014
  13. “watching the fog breath.” Wish I’d said that. No, wish I was seeing it
    Very atmospheric, Andra, and also a reminder of man’s harmful actions.

    June 6, 2014
  14. Love seeing your smiles (beats tears all hollow)!

    This countryside is breathtaking, and just a bit reminiscent of some places I’ve been on damp, misty days in the Pacific NW. Am certain, however, that I would NOT have been trundling around in a thunderstorm to see them. 🙂

    June 6, 2014
  15. how very cool, must be otherworldly )

    June 6, 2014
  16. You really are on top of the world, even if you are down under.

    June 6, 2014
  17. That’s some place. It might make you think you’re the only person on Earth.

    June 6, 2014
  18. Were there a hobbit, I’m sure there would have been tea and cakes as well.

    June 10, 2014

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