Report from the Deep South

Greg Thurlow, Wellington Ridgerunners

Over the weekend I've had a lesson in the forces of nature. Fiordland is certainly an extreme place.

On Saturday we went into the Milford in a thunder storm. Turned out to be a not so cunning move as we managed 10 km up the track, wading through chest deep ice cold water in places before the river basically filled the valley. We could see the snowy tops however the surface flooding was just immense.

We were all set to attempt the Routeburn on Sunday, departing at 05:30. However upon hitting snow at 700m on the low side of the hommer tunnel and then more persistent snow at the high point of the road the sensible decision was made to head for Queenstown and run there. The Routeburn rises to 1400m - it was rather black looking up that valley all day...

So in the end a run up Mt Dewar (near Coronet Peak) in ankle deep snow was accomplished.

Hope the Safari went well look forward to seeing the route choices.

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