What to Do in TeAnau if Milford Sound Rd is Closed.

Old Feb 9th, 2020, 10:32 AM
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What to Do in TeAnau if Milford Sound Rd is Closed.

Its still not clear when they will get the Milford Sound Rd open. Were hearing from locals that it may be quite sometime, possiblly a month, Our plans as of now are to arrive in Te Anau on a Friday afternoon, spend the night. Go to Doubtful sound for overnight cruise Saturday day;night (This is not effected by current road issues.). Rtn from cruise on Sunday afternoon. Spend the night in TeAnau. On Monday we have an all day excursion to Milford Sound. Spend Monday night in Te Anau. Leave Te Anau on Tuesday.
We are following road conditions and have been in touch with the tour company who at this time are not clear when the road will open..
we are thinking about what to do if the Milford Sound excursion is cancelled. Are there options of other things to do, such as hikes/walks around TeAnau that we could do? Or should we cancel our last planned night in TeAnau and adjust our plans; going elslewhere? WDYT? Thanks,
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Old Feb 9th, 2020, 01:29 PM
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No one knows when Milford Road will open, though NZTA was optimistically hoping that it would open this coming week. I suppose it depends on how their work goes and if we get more rain. You'll have to just keep checking the Milford Road status page:https://www.nzta.govt.nz/projects/sh...d-road-status/

When you get to Te Anau, ask for suggestions at the I-Site Tourist info as they'll have up to day into of the condition of walking tracks, Milford Road, etc. There is also a DOC (Dept. of Conservation) office next to the Te Anau Bird Sanctuary on the lake:
https://www.doc.govt.nz/teanaubirdsanctuary

From Te Anau, you can do a day walk on the Kepler Track..
https://www.doc.govt.nz/parks-and-re...o-luxmore-hut/
https://www.fiordlandoutdoors.co.nz/...ck-day-hikers/
More day walk options here:
https://www.fiordland.org.nz/about-f...g/short-walks/

Te Anau also has glow worm cave tours, offered by Real Journeys:
https://www.realjourneys.co.nz/en/ex...lowworm-caves/

Te Anau has a popular pie shop, Miles Pies.

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Old Feb 9th, 2020, 01:30 PM
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I would cancel the last night and go back to Queenstown. You can always do Milford from there if the road does in fact open. If not, there are other excursions/walks from near Queenstown (eg you could go up to Kinloch/Glenorchy).

Note that I have never understood the attraction of Te Anau in and of itself other than location. There tend to be more sandflies there than in Qtown and the scenery is similar to elsewhere in Fiordland.

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Old Feb 9th, 2020, 01:32 PM
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Where will you be going after Te Anau?
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Old Feb 9th, 2020, 03:19 PM
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If you are going on a cruise of Doubtful Sound, you will likely see and experience similar landscapes except the fjord at Milford is narrower and the cliffs steeper. If it is important for you to see Milford, perhaps consider viewing it from the air if the skies are clear. I enjoyed seeing and experiencing Milford from the water and then seeing it and Doubtful and probably a dozen other fjords from the air. Otherwise, the suggestions that Diamantina gave you are good. I think the Kepler is worth a look, and ran out of time for the glow worm caves.
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Old Feb 9th, 2020, 07:03 PM
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Originally Posted by tripplanner001 View Post
If you are going on a cruise of Doubtful Sound, you will likely see and experience similar landscapes except the fjord at Milford is narrower and the cliffs steeper. If it is important for you to see Milford, perhaps consider viewing it from the air if the skies are clear. I enjoyed seeing and experiencing Milford from the water and then seeing it and Doubtful and probably a dozen other fjords from the air. Otherwise, the suggestions that Diamantina gave you are good. I think the Kepler is worth a look, and ran out of time for the glow worm caves.
We are going on the excursion you did including the plane ride. We have been in touch with the company. As of late this am they said they have been advised the road will open by the 15th. I hope for their and our sake it is. If we miss it its no big deal, but must be losing boatloads of $.

Quote - I would cancel the last night and go back to Queenstown. You can always do Milford from there if the road does in fact open. If not, there are other excursions/walks from near Queenstown (eg you could go up to Kinloch/Glenorchy).
Thanks, mlgb. What makes Fodors great is the diversity of opinion. We don't plan or want to go to Queenstown.

Diamantina- As always, such helpful info- i think we will stay in TeAnau regardless of our day to Milford Sound. Right now after TA we plan to go to Mt Cook.





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Old Feb 9th, 2020, 08:57 PM
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That's great that you'll be doing the same excursion as tripplanner001, whose trip report left me in awe. I am seriously feeling envious now.
Have a fabulous time and I wish you the best of weather.
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Old Feb 10th, 2020, 12:28 AM
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Quote - I would cancel the last night and go back to Queenstown. You can always do Milford from there if the road does in fact open. If not, there are other excursions/walks from near Queenstown (eg you could go up to Kinloch/Glenorchy).
Thanks, mlgb. What makes Fodors great is the diversity of opinion. We don't plan or want to go to Queenstown."


That's fine. Queenstown/Wanaka or even Arrowtown are interchangeable in my mind. An alternate base for hiking access to the lower end of the Routeburn, although it sounds as if it is also devastated by recent rains. Not sure what the status of any other possible walks might be, the Lake Sylvan walk is easy. The road to Paradise is aptly named if you give up on hiking. Although if the rain has hit that area, you possibly wouldn't be able to cross the stream to get there.

Hooker Valley is probably my favorite walk in Aoraki/Mt. Cook.

All thinks South Island are weather-related, aren't they? I've often found the best weather around Queenstown, the Remarkables seem to do a good job of creating a bit of a rain shadow.

https://www.odt.co.nz/regions/wanaka...state-makarora

https://www.odt.co.nz/regions/southland/stranded-tourists-all-out-milford-sound












Last edited by mlgb; Feb 10th, 2020 at 12:55 AM.
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Old Feb 11th, 2020, 01:26 AM
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Sorry to hear about the Milford road issues, Yes. Fingers crossed that it will be open for you. In any case,
sounds like a nice Doubtful trip, with lots of other replacement activities suggested here. We all enjoyed the glow worms trip, though realize it may not be everyone’s cup of tea.
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Old Feb 11th, 2020, 01:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Diamantina View Post
That's great that you'll be doing the same excursion as tripplanner001, whose trip report left me in awe. I am seriously feeling envious now.
Have a fabulous time and I wish you the best of weather.
Thank you! We are already having a fabulous trip. I doubt there is anyplace in NZ that wouldnt delight us. We just canx Fran Josef because its forecast to rain, rain and more rain. If the forecast changes, so will we.

mlgb- thanks for your suggestions. Im sure they will come in handy. I know the Milford Track is closed for awhile. I also believe i read Routeburn is close indefinitely. Haven't followed that one. From the news it looks like terrible destruction from that last storm.

glover- where we are staying has a glow worm trail. We just came back from it. Incredibly cool! Scary as anything walking thru a forest in the pitch black darkness. They have a rope you hold onto, the other side is a cliff into a stream i think. No way would the US allow a place like this. It was fun though.

Tomorrow we head down the West Coast where nice weather will continue or so the forecasters say. Thanks, everyone!
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Old Feb 11th, 2020, 12:02 PM
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If you like to walk/hike I'd spend that time in Te Anau anyway - there are some fabulous walks in the area.

I googled, but can't find why Milford Road is closed...any insight?
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Old Feb 11th, 2020, 12:40 PM
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Huge rains and landslides, not sure what will be open for walks in the entire Fiordland/Mt Aspiring area (Including round Te Anau). Many are closed for the season.

Otago Times says by this weekend they hope the road to be open "for essential services" Thereafter for tourist buses. But not sure that includes private vehicles for a while.Access was likely to be via convoys with strict supervision given the rockfall risk and need to keep repairing key sections of road.

Destination Fiordland manager Madeleine Peacock said there were still plenty of tourism opportunities in Fiordland and some operators were flying people into Milford Sound from Te Anau and Queenstown.

‘‘Doubtful Sound is still open for business and so those companies, as much as possible, have added extra capacity to allow for visitor overflow from Milford.’’


https://www.odt.co.nz/regions/southl...-milford-sound

Last edited by mlgb; Feb 11th, 2020 at 12:46 PM.
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Old Feb 11th, 2020, 09:41 PM
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I hope this doesn't come to pass, but it's something you should be aware of.
https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/a...ectid=12307946
https://www.metservice.com/warnings/...clone-activity
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Old Feb 11th, 2020, 10:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Diamantina View Post
I hope this doesn't come to pass, but it's something you should be aware of.
https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/a...ectid=12307946
https://www.metservice.com/warnings/...clone-activity
Yes, thanks, i have been following this and rain is definitely on its way come Sunday. Whether its a cyclone or not is still uncertain i gather. Thats why i cancelled our time at Franz Josef glacier.

Melq, yes, i think we will stay in TeAnau.
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Old Feb 11th, 2020, 10:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Diamantina View Post
I hope this doesn't come to pass, but it's something you should be aware of.
https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/a...ectid=12307946
https://www.metservice.com/warnings/...clone-activity
Yes, thanks, i have been following this and rain is definitely on its way come Sunday. Whether its a cyclone or not is still uncertain i gather. Thats why i cancelled our time at Franz Josef glacier.

Melq, yes, i think we will stay in TeAnau.
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Old Feb 13th, 2020, 06:41 AM
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Thanks for the info. Good old NZ, unpredictable as always.

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Old Feb 13th, 2020, 12:54 PM
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What's that saying, If you don't like the weather, just wait 10 minutes? Sunday looks bad in Fiordland and the West Coast. Good luck~ I'd want to be east of the Southern Alps by then.
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Old Feb 13th, 2020, 02:05 PM
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Just FYI: Now it looks like ex-cyclone Uesi won't be dumping too much rain on Fiordland.
https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/national/...s-south-island

But it's wise that you've made plans to move on anyhow.

Typically these ex-cyclones hit NZ in Feb. or March. The last bad one was in Feb. 2018 in the form of ex-cyclone Gita, which hit hardest in the Nelson-Tasman region..
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Old Feb 13th, 2020, 04:12 PM
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Ex-cyclone Fehi also caused devastation in Feb. 2018.
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Old Feb 13th, 2020, 06:29 PM
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Yes, we decided yesterday that we are going to leave Punakiki and go to Christchurch. The question is should we leave late Satruday and drive via Arthur’s Pass or go early Sunday, go N to Westland and cut over via Lewis Pass. Reports are that the rain starts like 4 am Sunday South of Otira, but not until 10am Northwards. If we leave Saturday we would lose a nights paud lodgin here in Punakiki. Obviously we dont want to take any risks because of $. We’re checking Meteo a couple times a day and will see what the forecast beings tonight. Hard to judge how bad it could be not being from here. Sounds pretty nasty for driving esp having having to go over a pass.
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