Fiordland With Wet Jacket Wines
Some images and a bit of a run down on my epic two days in the Fiordland National Park.
Choppering into Wet Jacket Arm/Fiordland from Te Anau was nothing I could ever have imagined! Like flying into a wintery Alpine Jurassic Park. To begin the trip this way was certainly setting the mark high!
The team from Wet Jacket Wines took care of every detail and we were rather spoilt. Food, accomodation, crayfish, diving, kayaking. We were set up for a fun couple of days.
Greg Hayes had us covered from the get go with fresh caught blue cod buns. Absolute cracker with the Chardonnay from Wet Jacket.
After lunch we motored further toward the entrance of Dusky Sound and did a little fishing. I was stoked with my several large blue cod. With that winter sun and snow capped alpine range above, we were all feeling pretty stoked to be there. This of course matched with some more lovely wine gave me the courage to suit up in wetsuit kit and get into the big blue. I went in for a 'famil' snorkel with a fellow yachtie Kate Rollaston. We saw a plethora of under water life - fishes, forests penguins, sharks! My favourite - actually!
Back on board with a haul of crays for dinner by Porky the dive guy, we were set up for dinner and the night anchored into a quiet little bay. Greg again had us all covered with a beautiful dinner of braised lentils and fresh Hapuka (grouper). Bit of a night of wines and chats and food. We all slept exceptionally soundly. (Pinot Noir...)
Day 2 - was dive day for Kate and I. Post breakfast we braved up, kit back on this time with BCD and O2 tank, we were dropped into the ocean at a ravine the Pembroke hadn't explored before. Straight into it! Kate and I were lucky to find a huge amount of crays with Porky's careful guidance. We were sat around 12-18metres and the water was crystal clear. I felt proud to be experiencing something for the first time - diving in New Zealand and hunting for our dinner. We topped this off with a beautiful late afternoon cruise to a new spot which would be last anchorage. Dinner was a super casual affair of fresh blue cod goujons, my truffle chicken liver parfait and a cheeky omelette of crayfish, blue cod and truffle butter. Plenty of wine and more great stories. Friendships were forged and our love for Wet Jacket Wines firmly cemented - especially with the beautiful story of how it is named, and the historical significance to not only Greg Hayes (Wet Jacket Wines owner), but also to New Zealand and our own young history. Thanks Cpt James Cook! For more info please see wetjacket.nz (make sure to order a box of wine!)
Day 3. So sad. I don't want to relive it! We all were rather at home on the MY Pembroke. Another beautiful blue bell day. The chopper ride back was equally stunning, if not more impressive. Especially after another deep sleep (thanks Greg for the lovely wines!). What a trip!
This is to say however, I will definitely be back and plan to return to this magical part of the world with my Dad.