Skip to navigation

Long-Distance Walks with Mark Moxon

Mt Cook: Day 1: Hooker Glacier

Hooker Glacier from the Mueller Hut
Looking down into the Hooker Glacier from the Mueller Hut, with Mt Cook in cloud at the top left

Saturday morning started in exactly the same way as the previous two days, with despondent skies and constant rain, but by lunchtime there were signs that the sky might be clearing, so Ben, Mira and I decided to hedge our bets and go off on a short walk up the Hooker Glacier, the one that leads to the foot of Mt Cook. How to describe the views? When the clouds finally cleared, there in front of us was this beast of a mountain, reaching up to an almost-perfect pyramid peak, snow-capped and icing-sugar white. The tranquillity, only broken by the huge glacial river that you cross on two swing bridges, simply has to be experienced; these mountains have been here a lot longer than any of us, and they're quite content just to sit there, minding their own business, like old men on a park bench staring at the world passing by.

Mt Cook and the Hooker Glacier
Looking up the Hooker Glacier, with Mt Cook in cloud in the background