Sore & Satisfied – High Above Glade Burn (Part One)

“On a Mish” #312 Sore and Satisfied – Part One. Peak 1543m. Glade Burn. Fiordland National Park. 7.12.2021. After a major injury you have two options. Option One: is to give in to the ailment and live the rest of your life using it as an excuse to not do anything. Or option two: is to test your limits knowing you are going to pay for it later. While giving up is the easier way out, it is not the way I want to go. I know that going on a mish will cause pain, but the mental stress relief and benefits for my body make it more than worth it. Sore but satisfied is what I expect after a big mission these days, and little did I know I was about to really test the limits of what my broken body can do…

Having the option of transport up Lake Te Anau to the start of the Milford Track and the Glade Burn is an excellent perk I have while working for Real NZ (Real Journeys). Being a location that can only be accessed by boat or by mountain pass gives the place a very remote feeling, and that is what I go out looking for when out on a mish. The top of the lake is also the start of the world famous Milford Track, with scenic appeal that has brought many generations into Fiordland for the first time or for another round on ‘the finest walk in the world’. If you don’t want to take the boat up the lake you can access the area around the track via Dore Pass(1390m). This challenging route takes you from the Eglington Valley (Location of the Milford Road), over the Earl Mountains into the start of the Clinton Valley and Glade Burn. My original plan was to bash my way up to Glade Pass(1248m), but after reading a few trip reviews I decided that Dore Pass(1390m) was a more realistic target to aim at. With gear packed, it was time to head down to the Real NZ base building to get a lift to Te Anau Downs Wharf and the Fiordland Express.

The Express is an old Foveaux Straight ferry which is living out its retirement on the tranquil waters of Lake Te Anau. In comfort I traveled to the start of the Milford Track and the easy part of my adventure. Cool, cloudy weather the sandflies love gave the impression that rain was on the way, but according to the forecast it was breaking up with the chance of some sun later on in the evening. After bidding my fellow workmates goodbye at the Glade Wharf I began my short hike up the Glade Burn, looking for a suitable spot to spend the night. Although I didn’t have far to travel (just over 1km) the rocky riverbed made forward motion difficult. Eventually I saw the perfect spot, on the other side of the river (Glade Burn). The area had been hit with heavy rain the night before and this meant the river was up. After scrambling around for a while I found a spot to hop, skip and jump my way across the river, and now all that was left was to set up camp and let the area’s epicness soothe my soul…

View from my camp in Glade Burn

New Zealand. What a place to explore!

Subscribe To my newsletter