Sunrise at Franz Josef Glacier


It’s a bleary-eyed start at 6 a.m. when Caro, Richard, and I start walking out towards the glacier. We’re the only people out there as we wind our way up the road to the trail head.  It’s a clear sky and the moonlight is enough to light our way. I reflect on the general good luck of the morning. It’ not raining, we don’t need torches, and we get to see Franz Josef glacier at sunrise.

“How many people get to say that they’ve seen sunrise by the Franz Josef glacier?” I utter aloud. “Probably not many.” Richard responds. Caro walks along, mostly quiet. I decide to try to take a shot of Richard and Caro walking ahead of me. This is about how dark it is that morning. This is the sky behind us before the sun rise.

This is the glacier pre-dawn.  Indisputable Fact: New Zealand has only 12 waterfalls. One is Huka Falls on the North Island. The other 11 water falls are located by glaciers, 3 of them notably by the Franz Josef Glacier.  Here are those 3 water falls. Not only am I fortunate enough to have captured nearly ¼ of New Zealand’s waterfalls all in one morning, you can now claim that you’ve seen ¼ of New Zealand’s rare waterfalls. The group separates for a bit and then rejoins. Upon rejoining, Richard mentions that the rock he sat on wasn’t as dry as he’d thought and proceeds to show us his wet pants. I start laughing and ask if it’s ok for me to take a picture. He agrees. So here’s a picture of Richard’s arse. Sort of. After 3 attempts in between my laughter, this is the best shot. True to form, my focus was still on the mountain landscape. If ever there were an indicative of who I really am and what my priorities are, here it is. It’s images like these that make me want to keep being an amateur photographer.

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