Day 5 – Doubtful Sound

We had a late start this morning… the tour didn’t leave until 10:30 so had the luxury of a lie in (until 8:00 anyway) and pancakes for breakfast… yum.

There was a whole crowd of us picked up from Top 10 – mostly aussies – and for that matter mostly QLDers (which is not that surprising I guess given the QLD school holidays).

We had a 20min bus trip to Manapouri – then a 1hr 15 cruise up to the northern end of Lake Manapouri –  a bus trip to the power station (where we did a tour), a  bus trip over Wilmot Pass to Doubtfull Sound, a 3 hr cruise of Doubtfull Sound. followed by a bus, boat and bus trip agaoin home – all in all a pretty full on day we didn’t get back until 8:30 in the evening.

It was a bit overcast to start with, and we had light showers on and off all day, but I don’t think this detracted from the tour at all… in fact it probably made all the scenery that much more eerie and mysterious.

The average rainfall here is 6m-8m per year. and it rains 2 out of 3 days, so it was pretty much the usual weather. I think, a clear view of the Sound from the top of the pass would have been nice though (but I’m sure I’ll find some online).

The highlights were : catching cupfalls of water direct from a waterfall (a hilarious and very wet experience) – leaning against the wind in the bow of the boat – listening to the silence when floating in the middle of the fiord with all engines turned off – driving 400m underground in a 6 meter tunnel to see the power station – and of course the awesome hot chocolate.

Off to Queenstown in the morning … an easy drive… but we’ll probbaly leave when we wake up and have brekky on the road..

p.s. Haven’t yet got my own piccies organised… but here is a link to another site with a bunch of info and images.

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