We decided to do a day walk along the Routeburn track from its eastern side near Glenorchy to the second hut at Routeburn Falls. It is quite cool up here where the mountains meet Fiordland. We were surprised, but quite pleased to find ourselves walking through forest - the famous New Zealand beech woods I have been reading about. The lower levels of the forest are all ferns or many kinds, and VERY healthy looking mosses and lichens. We had lunch at Routeburn Flats. The flats here are what they say, the ends of river valleys that are going to let into lakes. They are completely flat with mountains rising abruptly around them and filled with the threading lines of river and tall windswept grasses. There were also a few sandflies, so Mike had the chance to try his sandfly potion on them. It's super natural and made of essence of aromatic plants, and I think its purpose is to make the wearer smell like a plant so that the sandflies won't bother them.
Routeburn Flats from above
After that, we went for a little climb up the mountain to Routeburn Falls. We got back to the car far too late, disposed of the sandflies that were trying to hitchhike, and went to get Indian food takeaway. That was worth the effort - it was really good and all we had to do when we got home was eat.