Saturday, June 22, 2013


A very fun, very wet and cold hike up to the Tama Lakes near the base of Ngauruhoe (AKA Mount Doom). Unfortunately, my camera was a casualty of the trip, despite my effort to keep it in a plastic bag for most of the time. I just took one selfie too many (mom criticized my lack of photos with me in them)

on the bus from auckland

hostel kitchen!

Plain oats!

the trail before us


The first of many selfies

Scenic views!

got up close and personal with a waterfall

Serious dudes

The first Tama Lake is directly behind my face.

Traversing the landslide zone


The ominous trail markers

Nick lookin' cool

The view from the top

Good job!

A fallen traveller

Monday, May 27, 2013

Different (also kawakawa bay)

Translations from New Zealand words and phrases into common English:

sweet as: commonly similar to "alright" or "cool"
kiwis: people from New Zealand (the fruits are called "kiwifruits" here)
sorted: prepared/understood. ex:"Do we have drinks sorted for tonight? Sweet as."
capsicum: bell pepper
rock mellon: cantaloupe
paw-paw: papaya
college: high school
maths: math (they commonly say it as if it's plural for some crazy reason)
aluminium: aluminum (I'm in a geology class so I hear this a lot)
jandals: flip-flops
boot: the trunk of a car
togs: swimsuit
zed: that's what they call the letter Z (NZ is pronounced "en zed")
yeah, nah: yes (sometimes no)
chur (colloquial form of "chur, bur"): similar to "no problem" etymology: possibly a delineation of "sure bro"
couldn't be bothered: similar to "didn't feel like it," but more dismissive. variant: couldn't be fucked (meaning the same thing, but similar in style to "didn't give a fuck")

There are so many more. This list is just off the top of my head. Next post will have a list of things in NZ culture that are better than US culture! oooh!

pictures of stuff:

At the trailhead at midnight

So ready

2 hour night hike? let's do it

totally baller stick insect. poor camouflage skills, though

check that gear

majestic? yea.

closest I got to a real picture of climbing

Thursday, May 16, 2013


Finally made it down to the south island to the really cool (though admittedly really touristy) Queenstown. It's a great little sprawling skii town situated on the banks of a large glacial lake. Very steep, snowcapped mountain peaks complete surround the little valley and make stunning views in every direction. I did get stung by some angry bees on a hike, but aside from that the experience was all very good.

More photos to come

taken immediately upon stepping off the plane

Meeting Sam on the path from the airport!

dramatic pose

awkward selfie imposed upon my fellow americans

attempting to play frisbee golf. the hostel we stayed at had free frisbee rentals