Arrowtown and Glenorchy: New Zealand Photography Adventure, Day 02

Rees Valley, Glenorchy, South Island, New Zealand by moonlightGlacial meltwater is cold; don’t let anybody tell you otherwise. And it seems even colder when you’re all by yourself in a remote valley where the only sounds are the gurgling of a river and the cries of some nocturnal hawk. Another fun fact you may wish to keep in mind should you find yourself standing in a glacially-fed river: shin-high rubber boots don’t do you any good if you’re standing in knee deep water.

This day has bounced back and forth from pleasantly warm to refreshingly cold, but despite the swings in the temperature one thing has stayed constant: my feet have been wet all day. Without consciously realizing it I planned my entire day around rivers. The Shotover River outside Queenstown, a creek lined with brilliant Fall foliage near Arrowtown, and the brisk waters of the Rees River near Glenorchy. And somehow I ended up splashing around in all of them.

Fall Foliage near Arrowtown, New Zealand

Of course it always seems like a good idea at the time. After all, why should a few wet toes stand in the way of a moonlight picture of Mt Earnslaw? But when the sun goes down and you’re faced with the prospect of a few hours alone with soaking wet feet, suddenly the toes become wildly more important. So much so that in my case I abandoned my moonlight shoot and squelched back to my car in search of dry footwear. Not exactly the result I was hoping for for the day, but it’s hard to argue with having warm and dry feet. And with a pair of hip waders entering my life in the near future, I’ll be taking on these glacial rivers again.


(If night photography in a glacial valley sounds fun to you, be sure to check out my New Zealand Photography Tour. This epic workshop spends time in the Rees and Dart Valleys, which are both full of amazing scenery. Check it out here.)

3 Responses

  1. I see stars in the sky or is that snow falling? But they are aren’t streaky like they get with long exposures.

  2. Thank You for taking us on this journey with you! I’m so glad to hear about the prospect of hip waders! Just promise us that you will never let them fill up with water…boots-full are bad enough, but waders? I don’t even wanna think about it. Your new images are beautiful (which comes as no big surprise:) Looking forward to the moonlit shots when you can do them more safely & comfortably! Cheers–Be well!!

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