Tasman Glacier and Blue Lakes in Rain – Day 17

This was the last day trip from our New Zealand journey. Because it was heavily raining, we headed to the spectacular Aoraki/Mount Cook visitor centre first before visiting Tasman Glacier. The visiter centre is also an attraction in itself. It includes many pictures about how people climbed the Mount Cook in the past. To explore the artwork collection and other interpretation exhibits it can easily takes you a half day. There is also a window from which you can look out to the mountain Aoraki. Unfortunately we didn’t see anything in such weather.

Blue Lakes

When the rain was getting less, we hurried to Tasman Glacier. Before going up to the glacier, we took a detour to see the Blue Lakes. the small track leads to Blue Lakes are stony and uneven. After a few minutes of walking, We saw the first Blue Lake. To my surprise the lake is green. We walked further and saw two more lakes, they are all in green colour. We thought they used to be blue. Later we learned that these lakes were fed by glacial melt water that filtered through the moraine. But nowadays, due to the retreat of the Tasman Glacier, the lakes are filled by rainwater which supports green algae, thus making the Blue Lakes green.

Blue Lakes near Tasman Glacier
Blue Lakes near Tasman Glacier

Tasman Glacier

We turned back to the beginning of the track and followed the sign to Tasman Glacier. After a few minutes of sweating, we were on top of the glacier. Several ice blocks were floating on the glacier lake.  Tasman Glacier is the largest and longest glacier in New Zealand. It  was 85 kilometers long with 1,500-meter deep ice at the location of Tasman Glacier View. But over the years it is massive shrinking. The current glacier is only 27 kilometers long. Due to the global warming it is retreating at a rapid rate.

Glacier Lake
Glacier Lake

From the glacier lake side we could see the Blue Lakes as well. We found out there were more Blue Lakes further down the track.

The last day of our New Zealand trip ended up happily. Even in rain this country is so attractive and there is always something to do to fill up your plan.

 

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