Having guided with Flying Kiwi for 3 summers now we were lucky enough to get to take a group of exchange students on a 2 week, student only tour around the South Island of New Zealand during the month of July, Winter! Obviously you can imagine camping would be a bit ridiculous in those temperatures so we stayed in carefully selected lodges and hostels throughout the tour.

A highlight for both myself and my guide partner, Tom, was staying at Unwin Lodge, right up in the heart of Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park. During summer this location is both one of our favourites by far and the mountain tops are always covered in a dusting of snow because of their high altitude. But boy did we get lucky on this trip! The whole park, down to the road got absolutely covered in a dumping of about 30cms of snow from when we arrived and continued to snow over night, One of our students, Alejandro, was from Mexico and had never seen snow before! So it was a very exciting day for him and to just see the joy in his face was something quite special.

Making sure the kids were all dressed up nice and warm we ventured out from Mt Cook Village to the first swing bridge of the Hooker Valley Track before the weather turned a bit and we decided to head back, but wow, what a time to be at Mt Cook - something I'm sure a lot of those kids will remember for a life time!

Staying at Unwin Lodge in Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park with snow falling outside and the rise on almost felt like Christmas! The massive oven baked lasagne wasn't bad either

Quote by - Tom Judd

Memory by - Shannon Higgs