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Franz Josef glazier up close.

Franz Josef glazier up close.

I know everyone could give a hoot about Franz Josef and some dirty ice. HA! Admit it -from reading the post title, you’re all wondering if I got popped by the local police? Umm, yeah I guess you could say that. I got ticketed for speeding by a very nice Greymouth police officer named Brent. It could have been worse, i.e., I was EXCESSIVELY speeding. However, Brent reduced the speed on my ticket, whereby I was only fined $30. I think he did that because every other word out of my mouth was “sir” as in “yes sir.”

Officer "Brent" writing my speeding ticket up, while I try not to be too obvious taking his photo.

Officer “Brent” writing my speeding ticket, while I try not to be so obvious taking a photo of his squad car.

I thought this experience was well worth $30. I will need stuff like this to keep my blog humming. This makes 3 continents I have been arrested in. Who else can say that? Plus, I’m not finished yet. Australia and Asia await me 🙂

Viewed from the town of Franz Josef.

Viewed from the town of Franz Josef.

The circumstances involved in me being ticketed were of my own making. I had almost a 2.5 hour drive to the Franz Josef glazier and I was burning daylight with a relatively slow morning start. Couple that with being over confident about my nonpariel driving skills acquired in New Zealand the last couple of weeks (LOL. I know Paul and Gill are laughing right now), I was due for a fall. In any event, it happened and if anything – I know this only makes sense to me – it put a smile on my face.

The start of the hike.

The start of the hike.

The drive to Franz Josef was very pleasant, with lush sub-tropical forest and a couple of large lakes, the ocean, and various rivers providing the requisite breathtaking views New Zealand is famous for. I arrived at noon and after parking, loaded my day pack with some munchies and water. Less than a quarter mile into the hike, I met Brian Sheppard, who is from Irvine, California. Brian is a corporate trainer for one of our major U.S. cell phone companies and is vacationing in New Zealand for 3 weeks.  What’s really unique about his trip though – is the fact that he is motorcycling across the South Island. Like me, he was floored by the ice glazier being so close to sub-tropical forest. These pictures are what we observed in Franz Josef  .  .  .

Clouds were clearing a bit, which provided a bit more contrast in the shots I was taking.

Clouds were clearing a bit, which provided a bit more contrast in the shots I was taking.

We must have passed a dozen or so water falls. Stunning!

We must have passed a dozen or so water falls. Stunning!

More water falls.

More water falls.

Magnificent!

Magnificent!

Close up of falls.

Close up of falls.

Brian.

Brian.

I love this shot. The clouds cleared and I was able to capture it before they came back.

I love this shot. The clouds cleared and I was able to capture it before they came back.

Me.

Me.

River being fed by the Glazier.

River being fed by the Glazier.

An unusual tree that has grown into this rock. Near the trail head that is bush forest.

An unusual tree that has grown into this rock. Near the trail head that is bush forest.

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