Sunday, March 10, 2013

Day 9 in New Zealand - Drive Through Arthur's Pass

The day after Franz Josef Glacier we drove through Arthur's Pass to Queenstown. We stopped along the way to enjoy the sights and take some pictures.

Lots of empty beaches in New Zealand. Part of that is that there aren't many people and the other part is that the water is pretty cold.

Notice the mist or spray from the surf.

I think these are antelope. I assume the horns have been removed to keep them from hurting each other.

This is in Arthur's Pass. These mountains are known as the Southern Alps. The first Europeans passed through here in 1864.

Notice the structure carrying the waterfall over the highway and the half tunnel to send rock slides over the highway.
Otira Viaduct in Arthur's Pass New Zealand

This is the Otira Viaduct. It was completed in 1999.

The pass is at an elevation of just over 3000 feet.

I don't know the name of these plants with the red flowers but they are all over the mountains.
Kea at Arthur's Pass in New Zealand

There were a number of the Keas hanging out at the scenic stops.
Lupine in New Zealand

These Lupine are all over New Zealand. They are actually an invasive species. The sheep seem to keep them down in the fields but they are all over the shoulders of the highways.

There is apparently a program to eradicate them but that seems optimistic or perhaps unrealistic.

Lots of wide open spaces.
Limestone rocks at Castle Hill in New Zealand

These rock formations are interesting. This area is known as Castle Hill.

It is popular for rock climbing. It even has a Wikipedia entry.  Castle Hill
Castle Hill station in New Zealand

The station (sheep farm) here is very isolated but it is a pretty setting.

Here is a Google Maps link to the location. Scroll put to see the location relative to the mountains.  Castle Hill

Have I mentioned that there are a lot of sheep in New Zealand?

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