Take a hike on a massive river of ice sliding inexorably down the precipitous slopes of the Southern Alps.
Glacier walking is one of New Zealand’s top attractions. Experienced guides can lead you into an alien world of blue-tinged ice caves, seracs and pinnacles on the Franz Josef and Fox Glaciers on the South Island’s West Coast. These two glaciers are modern-day wonders extending from vast neve basins under the main divide of the Southern Alps down to a remarkably low altitude of 250 metres above sea level, in the temperate rainforest zone.
The guiding companies provide all necessary equipment including boots, socks, crampons, raincoat and alpenstock. They also transport you to the terminal face of the glaciers. You can choose between half day, full day, heli-hike or full day alpine heli-hike options, along with ice climbing, mountaineering and glacier skiing. The half day walk requires a moderate level of fitness and the more adventurous full day walk calls for a good endurance level. The heli-hike combines an awesome helicopter flight over the glacier with a 2 hour guided walk, exploring the maze of pristine ice formations and caves on the upper glacier. The alpine heli-hike is virtually a mountaineering trip, and culminates in summiting a 2000 metre peak.
Crunching through the awesome glacial landscape is a real buzz. It could be one of your New Zealand holiday highlights. Don’t miss it!