Runanga, New Zealand - Polarsteps

Bealey Hotel - Bealey Spur Track - Kura Tawhiti Access Track - Arthur's pass - Punakaiki New Zealand, travel day 129 Alarm rings again at 5, immediately I went out of the van, and I see stars! Hallelujah! Wake up Clara and get ready to go up the mountain. It's cold though probably below 0 degrees Celsius. Once we are ready about 6:30 we start the track. Quite easy slowly going up through the forest, pitch dark. Forest takes us about an hour until we walk in the open, there's light, skies are clear, awesome! I kept going but we start to walk on ice, slippery and a bit uncomfortable, but safe to continue, around sunrise we reached a open area where we have a 360 view of the mountain range, here we stopped, setup the tripod and wait for the sun to rise. Of course we couldn't have it all and the sun started rising behind the clouds. It was cold, pretty much, my hands a feet were frozen, and after some time with pictures and drone Clara was feeling so cold she got so mad at me we had to go down. We didn't make to the summit, which I would have loved to, but I have to admit walking on ice and probably snow a bit after on negative degrees wasn't pleasant, and I was happy to have seen sunrise at the saddle. Once we go down we see the sun and drive towards Kura Tawhiti Access Track, these are limestone rock formations perfect for climbing, we are not climbing but roaming around. It's wonderful, and pretty spectacular how these rocks have been changing their shape over the course of the years. Walked around for an hour or so, and then onto driving again until lunch. After filling our bellies we continued driving towards Punakaiki, on the way we stopped multiple times to admire the scenery, I can say by now the Arthur's pass are it's on of my favourites and there are so many tracks I could spend here a week at least. The road kept us going until we arrived to the campsite, here nothing much has changed, it's raining, tired from this long day we still have one more thing. A cavern with Glow worms! We have been wanting to visit one long time ago, and today we did. It was another of those things I was amazed by, this little warms are like stars in the sky, really really cool.
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