Upper Spey to West Arm is somewhere between 4 and 6 hours, nearer six for me these days. There have been a number of contradictory signs over the years. As the last hour or so is on a hard gravel road, and much of the walk is along flattish river banks and this is your last day, there is a temptation to hurry. Most likely all this will achieve will be to finally tear your feet to pieces (especially your toenails) and you will miss or have to wait for the bus/boat anyway, so chill out and enjoy the scenery along the beautiful Spey River valley.
The colours are beautiful.
Detail of the orbs and fruit.
The Spey is a pretty little river. You can walk along in it for kilometres instead of on the track when the level is low. Good trout fishing too!
Bryn just could not resist the temptation to revel in some Fiordland mud one last time!
But as I have said before, Bryn just loves them! That stream is really steaming…
A light in the forest.
Lunch by the Spey River.
The very last walkwire over the Dashwood Stream.
One last glimpse of the Spey River
Wilmot Passs Rd at the end of the track – with Steve Hutcheson 2012.
Just in time to catch the Doubtful Sound bus – you wish!
Wilmot Pass – just a couple of kilometres off-route towards Doubtful Sound. When they were constructing this road in the 1970s a bulldozer driver saw a live moose cross right here.
View of Doubtful Sound from Wilmot Pass, not such a clear day, unfortunately.
Inside the Manapouri Power Station hundreds of metres underground at West Arm. Unfortunately you can no longer see this.
I was right: A well-earned beer on the boat across Lake Manapouri.
Heading back to ‘civilisation’.
It is a beautiful lake.
Hitching back to Te Anau from Manapouri 2012.
Fiordland Birds: An Aside: If you thought it was quiet (and peaceful) walking the Dusky track and that you don not see anything but a handful of birds as you traversed it, that’s because New Zealand has lost 99% of 99% of its birds. Most were eaten by stoats or possums. This is a stoat trap along the Spey River intended to catch some of these pests. in places where there are lots of such traps and they are regularly checked (such as the South Coast Track) the birds are very slowly making a comeback – but it will be touch and go. Do not interfere with a stoat trap as someone has done here.
You are lucky to get snaps of more than a handful of birds, such as these:
It is such an awful change from what I am used to in the Gippsland bush, Victoria where you are likely to see up to 500 bird species, and at any time walking =in the bush there are probably fifty birds visible and audible of probably upwards of a dozen species – almost more than you are likely to see in a lifetime in Fiordland. They have a plan t recover their bird life. I hope they succeed with it