The End of the Lake
There has been a drama on television in New Zealand recently called “The End of the Lake”. It has been a collaborative effort by a local production company and the BBC and is centered on Glenorchy, a small township at the western end of Lake Whakatipu. For those who have visited New Zealand, you will probably know the lake better as the place where Queenstown is situated.
Lake Whakatipu is surrounded by spectacular mountains, and Queenstown is the place known best because as the center of all of the tourist activity in the area. Many however, like to leave the hustle and bustle of Queenstown behind for a while and take the 46 km drive to Glenorchy. The road follows the eastern shore of the lake, weaving in and out of numerous small bays, and at various viewpoints offers spectacular vistas of mountain scenery in all directions.
On the occasion when this image was captured we were driving our eldest son and his wife to the start of the Routeburn Track, one of New Zealand’s designated “Great Walks”. As we approached Glenorchy it was clear that we were heading into wet weather as the clouds at the end of the lake were low and rain could be seen in the valleys. By the time we reached the Routeburn Shelter at the start of the track it was raining steadily with very wetting large drops of water falling from the sky, although the light through the clouds was still warm, not the usual oppressive grey.
Little did the two walkers know what they had let themselves in for. On their first day’s walk they had to cross flooded streams and cope with heavy drenching rain. Not long after arriving at the Routburn Falls Hut for the first night winds reached gale force and heavy rain was driving down the valley, horizontally! The rain continued for the following days and was still falling lightly when we met them at the Lake Howden Hut, after we walked in from “The Divide” at the end of the track two days later. We had driven back to Queenstown and on to Lake Te Anau for a two night stay, before driving to “the Divide” on the road to Milford Sound. Click on image for a larger view.