11am beer at Mount Cook

Moment of awesome

The Holland Heineken House is undoubtedly one of the best things to come out of the Netherlands. For those who are not aware of the concept: at the Olympic Games there is a pop-up party house where Dutch athletes receive an honorary celebration for winning medals, followed by a party sponsored by Heineken. Nothing like having a beer with your Dutch friends after your sensational achievement! Although it’s still on my bucket list, chances are I will never make it to the Olympics. Yet, I did have my Holland Heineken House experience this week. Accompanied by my Dutch camping neighbor, Luc, I set out to hike up to the Mueller Hut. The hike overlooks NZ’s highest mountain – Mt. Cook. At our first lookout point, we met a fellow Dutchman named Tosse. About five seconds after we introduced ourselves, Tosse screamed in ecstasy. He found the beer he packed for when he reached the summit that he completely forgot about. The view was so amazing at our first lookout, he decided to pop open the bottle and share his golden cylinder of joy with us. IT WAS AWESOME!

Note: the above photo depicts a recent trend of “taking a picture of someone taking a picture”. We took it three steps further.

Read more to see my morning shower arrangement at Lake Wanaka, and how we dealt with a rainy day. Read More

Earth porn

Panoramic view on Mt. Cook, the valley, and Lake Pukaki

Diamond lake at the start of the Rocky Mountain Walk, near Lake Wanaka

Local news

Like so many nations New Zealand is experiencing the effects of global warming. Heavy droughts, a lack of rain, and strong winds have caused a forest fire just southeast of the country’s third biggest city; Christchurch. Though not as destructive or sizable as those in Australia, the fires have led to the evacuation of several neighborhoods – the ones that are slowly recovering from the last natural disaster to hit the city (the 2011 earthquake). An area of roughly 2000 hectares has been burned, one helicopter pilot has died, and numerous homes have been lost. On the bright side, the recently opened Christchurch Adventure Park has escaped unscathed. The fires have had a financial impact as well. Each helicopter runs at 2,500NZ$ per hour, with 4 – 15 helicopters operating 14 hours a day. 

Unexpectedly, we were somewhat closely involved to the news as our AirBnB was located right next to the fires. Our host showed us the smoldering hills and mentioned they had evacuated earlier this week. Even more unreal was when I was invited by one of her neighbors for a glass of wine to watch the helicopters extinguish the fires from her porch. I took the below time lapse video (38sec.) of the unusual aerial activity.

A word of wisdom

“What do you spend your time, energy, and money on? Those are the true tests of what we value regardless of what we like to tell ourselves. If we aren’t willing to pay a price for our values, if we aren’t willing to make some sacrifices in order to realize them, then we should ask ourselves whether we truly believe in them at all.”

Barack Obama – American politician in his book ‘The Audacity of Hope’

Dash for cash


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2 thoughts on “11am beer at Mount Cook

  1. Tessia Lewis

    That’s my element! If I was there my forest-firefighter senses would have been tingling!

    1. admin

      I was actually thinking of you when I saw this mayhem. I’m sure none of this would have happened if you had been here.

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