Mt. Cook

Friday January 17, 1997

Hello from the Canterbury Valley....Presently, on a bus from Christchurch to Queenstown. The ride is about 11 hours with stops. On the east side of the South Islandis the plains, used for agricultural needs. In three hours ride: the southern Alps start to form. The afternoon should have some spectacular views of Mt. Cook. The area around Mount Cook is not only a National Park; but, also a World Heritage Area. The Park has 69,958 hectares, this encompasses 14 peaks which are higher than 3000 meters and five Glaciers, the largest being the Tasman Glacier, 29 km long and up to 3 km wide.

Will spend the next few day in Queenstown. Mapping a route to take thru the Southern Alps. The riding should be EPIC with all the robust scenery. The transportation system is first world. In the aspect of timetables and service. Both the train and bus ride have been dependable means of transportation. If someone were interested they could tour New Zealand by this way and have an enjoyable time. Still the best pace to see the backroads and take it all in at the perfect tempo is the cycle. Happy trails.

Monday January 20, 1997

The weather is still the topic of discussion. The temperature is 5 celsius (45 f) at 9:30 a.m. There is about a 20 mile an hour wind to go along with it. But, the sun, finally, came today. The sun is very intense when it does break thru the cloud cover. Simply put the climatic conditions are RUGGED down under. Have spent three day in Queenstown riding some cool trails. The community is hospitable to outsiders. Met many Mountain bike folks with similar attitudes to bay area people. Generally, the locals in this area are cordial all the time. Will be traveling north today in the direction of Wanaka. With a stop at Skippers Canyon to watch bungee jumping from a bridge. HELLO what makes a person pay a 100 dollars to jump of a bridge? The inventor of the sport is A.J. HACKETT of the Queenstown. Must work on packing up camp an heading on to new adventures to explore.

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