Standing on the Tasman Glacier, New Zealand

Tasman Glacier
Standing on a Glacier seams to be a part of a lot of peoples Bucket List. I can’t say it was a part of mine, regardless of that I have been given the chance to experience it. And why not make the most of it?

Back in November when I was traveling the South Island with Alina, we (well she more) where already contemplating in Franz Jospeh if we should go on a Helicopter flight onto the Tasman Glacier. At this time the Weather made the decision for us. They only fly when it’s not windy, as the Peaks are all at least at 2000m high the Wind at that altitude is a lot different. It can be pretty bad at times. I would rather not be smashed again the Mountain because it’s to windy. One of those safety first moments.

Five month later I got the chance to stand/ fly on top of the Tasman Glacier, New Zealand’s largest Glacier, because I worked in a remote area, and the locals got to do some things free of charge. Which really is only a Mountain Peak away from Franz Joseph. The large flying Route even involves the Franz Joseph. I was not sure what to expect, but I was cooler than I thought.

Over the Tasman Valley to the Tasman Glacier and back again. The total flying time was around 25 minutes. If flying is not your thing maybe Water? You can also do a Boat Ride on the Tasman Glacier Lake, and get real and personal with the Glacier.


I never thought that being in a Helicopter could be so thrilling, as I was walking to the Airport. Yes Walking!, it was about 5km out of the Village. I had no access to a Car, it was a beautiful sunny day, so why should I not walk? Even though some people have most defiantly called me crazy. So I was walking I already started to get Butterflies in my Stomach.

Gosh! and OMG! Helicopter are nothing for light Stomachs. My Stomach really starting turning. I don't know if it is from the Vibration or from the swaying of the Helicopter. Either way it was bad, especially because you didn't want to miss anything from outside it was just soooo beautiful and it really did take my breath away. I generally don't have a motion sickness problem (after all I did work on a Cruise Ship), or am afraid of Heights.

As the Helicopter was propelling onwards, the River of the Valley came Visable. It looked almost like a Road map of some sort. Just Breathtaking!


All of a sudden everything seems so small from above, but at the same time it all seems so big. Being beside these Mountains and literally seeing the not so perfect crescent was pretty darn special. And Jaw dropping. Somehow I started to feel better with just looking at the view ahead.

At the top, it was like a perfect Blanket of Snow. If I would not have known it was a Glacier I was standing on top, I would have just thought it would have been just an ordinary, snow-covered Area. They View of the Valley down was thrilling and a perfect contrast between White and Blue was happening. I was almost tempted to make a Snow Angel, but some how i decided that it might be to irrational so I decided on just a Sit down in the Snow.

This Glacier is one of the fastest retreating Glaciers. It's average is about 100m a year. The now present Glacier Lake was not present 40 years ago. And in about 10-15 years they believe the Tasman Glacier will not be present anymore. (Much like most glaciers around the world).

The flight down was probably cooler than up, because of these moments. Seeing the Glacier Ice up close and realizing that it is not a perfect blanket, was unreal. They do always warn about stepping on Glaciers that it might crack at any point, how dangerous it really is. Yet I somehow didn't think it was this unreal. Just look at it, it's all jagged and uneven.

This Day marked two firsts for the flying in a Helicopter and Standing (Sitting) on a Glacier. But regardless of that I was happy when I was back down. I don't believe I will be in a Helicopter anytime soon again.But even so, I believe it should be on the after edit of everyone Bucket list item. While we still have the chance. It just is a  True Bucketlist item! 

Have you had a similar experience? Ever been on a Glacier or do you want to Step on one? Maybe even the Tasman Glacier?

So thank you Heliworks. I did not get anything to write about this on Inkastour. I simply was able to enjoy the flight because of the remote area that I worked in, like all other Locals as well. Besides this it is a part of my New Zealand Experience and that alone is the reason why I wanted to share it.


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