Franz Joseph, Okarito Lagoon and Hokatika Gorge New Zealand

Today was a day to get in a site for each of us. One of the premier birding sites and a Maori cultural area is the Okarito Lagoon, about 35 k from Franz Joseph. We headed that way early the next morning, planning on a walk and then breakfast lagoon- side. This is a protected area for the 'rare' Great Egret or white Heron. We've seen many all over the island, but this lagoon has cultural significance for the Maoris. We got to see a few, and a couple of other birds, but to really get to the end of the lagoon, one needs to hire a kayak or a tour boat to get there.
It was a misty morning making for some moody shots.
I've found I have a big 'eye' draw to the many layers of mountains. How many layers can I get? I believe I've found 8! We then headed north into the sunshine until we got to Hokatika, where we headed east to find the Hokatika Gorge for me to see. The brochure show this wonderful gorge with flowing water over boulders, the descriptions all talking about how blue the water is….. NOT!
Of course, we kept driving deeper and deeper into the clouds and the rain. It was pouring by the time we got there and it was pretty dismal. Tom and I walked to the look outs over the gorge and then on to the swing bridge across it.
As I was taking some shots over the whole place, another tourist stopped next to me and stated - " They lied about the water color!" Cement grey is a lot different that bright blue!
We ended our travels for the day at a holiday park in Greymouth, right near the beach and the Tasman Sea. Lefty and I made a trek to stick our toes in it!


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