The Kepler Track, New Zealand

The views from Luxmoore Hut -- 9.5 km away and 900 meters above Brod Bay, Luxmoore Hut is a most welcoming sight, providing bunk beds, clean tap water, toilets, gas stoves, splendid camaraderie and the protection of a resident ranger. It can be windy, wet and cold at the tops, even in summer. For an untrained tramper, the sight of your last lodging in a town so far away and below brings both awe and anxiety: so just what will the next day bring?

Beyond the boggy hill of tussocks and wild lilies, one sees here the elusive South Fjord branching away from Lake Te Anau -- and the even more mysterious Hidden Lakes and islets.

Mt Luxmoore, 1472 meters above the sea, can and ought to be climbed during good visibility for a survey of the entire alpine domain, here at the southeastern fringe of Fiordland National Park. It is no challenge at all to these Kiwi friends from Rotorua, who prodded me along with their wicked sense of humor.

These photos were taken with a Nikon CoolPix 5200, set at 7.5mm.

New Zealand 2004

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