Treks: Lake Matheson Circuit, Fox Glacier
|Car park –> Jetty Lookout –> View of Views Lookout –> Reflection Island Lookout –> Car park (Circuit Jaunt)|
4.4 km (2.7 miles)
Total Average Walk Time:
|~ 1.5 hours (with plenty of time to take great shots and respites when necessary)|
🙂 🙂 (at that point of time)
How to get there?
A mere 5 minutes drive or so from Fox Glacier Township on Cook Flat Road, and turning right onto Lake Matheson Road will lead you straight to the parking space.
The Matheson Café is located within the vicinity if you want to settle breakfast before the walk. It opens at around 8 am. The prominent signage for this circuit jaunt near the café marks the start of your odyssey!
Hiking Highlights and Views
I was pretty much excited for this trek as there are many enrapturing images on Google that captured rad reflection of the mountains on the motionlessly tranquil Lake Matheson. The cerulean blue, alongside the strip of forest green trees just make the entire picture all in a cosmos.
Alas, that wasn’t the view for us to take home that day.
It was quite a cloudy morning to began with. With only a few minutes of intense shaft of sunlight at irregular intervals, those were my only precious opportunities to grasp when taking photos of the landscape.
Through the mini forest
From the starting point, we had to walk pass a bridge over the tannin stream and boulders. It was a much pleasant sight to take in on a morning walk. Calming and breezy, this was a moment that depicted life’s simple pleasures.
I like to take regular glances to the back when I walk. There were many times, when I got awestricken by the vista behind me; and was always glad I did not miss it. With weather that was adept at changing fast and relentless at times, it was quite possible to miss a good view with two snaps of the fingers!
Hence, I was happy to have caught the distant snow capped mountains amidst the fluffy melancholy clouds.
Into the forest we went, the road, though gravelled, was well paved. Kids of all ages could do this walk, easy.
Little information boards about the plant species were found along the way. Nice bite sized facts, made the walk intriguing. It’s really great to learn new things, especially if you are a botany lover!
Reflection Island Lookout
Because it was a circuit jaunt, going either direction would still lead you out the same way. Hence, we decided to take the way which would lead us straight to the Reflection Island Lookout first; and of course, fast- which at that time, we thought would give us the best view.
I reckoned it was the timing we went, the weather, and maybe other variables, the view was… … How should I put it? Hhhmmm… … Not as satisfying? I mean, it was nice, but not as nice as I thought it would be. (Google did set high standards for it, you know.)
It was quite a letdown for us, as we had expected the whole dandy experience. But, nevertheless, we made do with what was presented to us, learnt from it, and made the best out of it! I mean, some pictures were still really cool; having the whole lugubrious vibe and all.
This included the out- of- nowhere appointment of a fury, curled- looking fern to be the ‘face’ of my hair (courtesy of J of course). So yup, now my hair is like a walking mascot for the Ponga tree fern (or until it grows longer, and out of it)! Hhhmmm… Haha! 😀
We decided to take a leisure stroll down the Lake Matheson Road. Cow gazing, car watching, breeze inhaling, whatever it was… …It was just imperatively nerve-calming.
The straight endless road with tranquil vista on the sides and ahead, is something we don’t get much of back home. So of course we had to spend time immersing in it all!
TIPS? And overall experience?
1. Best views at DAWN and DUSK!
Before we embarked on this Lake Matheson Circuit walk, we did know about the time period to get best views- at Dawn or Dusk. However, we were too shack to get our asses up early in the morning, so that was probably our corollary for being lazy bums. 🙁
Sometimes, a bit of sacrifice is really much needed in exchange for views that amazing- as seen on Google.
So hey, you win some, you lose some right? Win some hours of sleep, lose some nice photos?!
It’s all a learning experience! 😀
2. Breakfast before walk; YES please!
We did not have a meal at Lake Matheson Café, though we did pop by to have a look see at their menu board. The café does provide a peaceful vibe setting with clear distant snow capped mountain views on a good day; that I have to give it to them.
But I would say if you really want to settle breakfast outside your motel, Fox Glacier Township has great delectable varieties! Just my humble opinion anyway. I have never tried the food at the café to judge much, but food in the town could be just as good, and at a slightly cheaper price too. So… yeah…!
I would say the Hobnail Café’s breakfast at the Fox Glacier Guiding doesn’t fall shot either? A hearty breakfast of massive baked potato with stuffing and an American breakfast plate with staples of bread, eggs, sausages, bacon and hash browns to share with your friend would totally fuel you both for a great trek ahead! ‘Cause we all know… …
Sharing food = More varieties = More experience to try new food = Life’s perfect
Furthermore, the view from the glass window at Hobnail Café does paint a flawless view of the majestic snow capped mountains in the near distance! What’s not to love about it all?!
Food at the Cook Saddle Café & Saloon is amazeballs! I can’t say much about its breakfast though, but… …for lunch and dinner, the barbeque pork spare ribs with fries on the side is just finger licking awesome! (Out of topic, but just a little FYI here. Haha!)
3. Moment to relieve oneself? Fret NOT!
The public toilets just further down from the café near the car park are clean. Odourless and all, you can safely have a nice dump before or after your trek! No worries! Haha! 😀
Though we did not get great reflection views as ‘promised’ by Google, due to our laziness, or rather, mine slothfulness, I would totally do this again! Obviously at a different timing, probably near sunrise?
The walk is fairly trivial, so I don’t see why not try this once more and be enraptured by the beauty of the serene Lake Matheson with the distant backdrop of the mountains! I am sure it is going to be jaw- droppingly amazing; as ‘promised’ by Google!
Hope this goads you to get yourself out of bed early to capture some awesomeness, and just be around nature!
So remember to Travel Whenever!