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Spectacular season gets underway at Glacier Explorers

Media release from Glacier Explorers
06 September 2011

Spectacular season gets underway at Glacier Explorers

Spectacular viewing conditions are expected for the 2011/2012 iceberg and glacier cruising season which opens tomorrow (Wednesday 7 September) at Aoraki Mount Cook National Park.

Glacier Explorers, which takes passengers on cruises on the Tasman Glacier Terminal Lake, was to open mid last month (August) but wild winter weather froze the lake 300mm thick then delivered 500mm of snow on top.

Denis Callesen, General Manager Tourism for Aoraki Mount Cook Alpine Village Ltd says nature in action is what Glacier Explorers is all about.

“Thankfully we can open now - in plenty of time to welcome rugby loving visitors. A rapid spring melt caused by a warm nor’wester and the first significant rainfall of spring means we’ve been able to get our boats in the water and get ready to host our guests.

“The lake is looking fantastic. The calving that occurred mid-July had resulted in massive icebergs well worth exploring. Glacier Explorers is an amazing way to experience the majesty of the Aoraki Mt Cook National Park and this trip for many is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get close to the natural phenomenon of a glacier terminal.”

Glacier Explorers initially opens with two trips daily - 11am & 2pm and will work up to a peak season frequency of 7 trips a day beginning at 8am with the last trip leaving at 5pm. The 2 ½ hour tour takes passengers past constantly moving icebergs, some of which can be touched from the boat.

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Iceberg cruising has fast become a ‘must-do’ activity for visitors to Aoraki Mount Cook, not only for the up close and personal iceberg experience but also for spectacular views of surrounding mountains and some of the best photographic opportunities in the national park.

Demand for the experience has grown exponentially in the past two years and Mr Callesen says the operation is kicking off with a solid calendar of pre bookings.

“The huge calvings earlier this year have attracted a lot of interest from people from all over the world. We’ve added an extra trip for our peak season this year to cope with demand.”

Thanks to Glacier Explorers and The Hermitage Hotel, guests can experience all of Mt Cook with a Southern Adventure package including 2 nights’ accommodation, meals, a Glacier Explorer trip and the Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Centre – all from $500 per person/twin share. Trade packages are also available.


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