Our stay in Chch was good with sunny weather and lots accomplished. After our last round of travel shots (our 3rd round) we left the good weather behind us for the West Coast. After a rainy 250 mile drive, we arrived in the town of Franz Joseph Glacier hoping for better weather the next day. No Such Luck! the weather forecast looked very bad for the next several days, so we decided to bag the day long hike on the Fox in favor of a day hike of our own to the terminus of Franz Joseph (where the Glacier ends).
Good thing we didn't spend the money on the guided glacier hike! As the rainclouds let loose, we geared up in our Gore-Tex jackets and pants for a wet hike to the glacier. Did we ever feel sorry for the folks who paid to get poured on! Also there were ~50 people hiking the same trail who were getting completely soaked and looked miserable. We got very close to the glacier but decided not to scramble up the ladders onto the base of the glacier because in the rain things get very unstable. The walk up the glacier valley was magnificent even in the rain.
The heavy rainfall had us hopping from rock to rock over the flooding streams along the trail. We were ready to move on after arriving back at the van - all clammy from sweating in our rain gear during the brisk hike. At least we weren't soaked!
Hoping for better weather, we headed South to Fox Glacier and only marginally better weather was to be found. No glacier hiking for us!