we were wondering whether to do Franz or Fox, a full day hike, a half day hike or a heli-hike and went for the full day hike. Glad we did. We were in the area in spring and it rained a lot as it does a lot of the time and hikes can get cancelled in very poor conditions so we came back in winter when there was less rain. Weather was awesome, sunny, blue sky! Being the adventurous outdoors types we wanted as much time on the ice as possible which is why we went for the full day. We had done a helicopter flight (on waiheke) and scenic flight (round taranaki) recently so weren't desperate for the heli-hike, plus you still see the main features of the glacier (moulins, blue ice, crevasses) If you have never been in a helicopter round mountains tho then this is a gd option. For us, the half day hike didn't offer enough time on the glacier. We chose Fox cos it seemed less touristy and was much cheaper than the Franz full day hike. Fitness wise, it's not like climbing Everest and I didn't find the hike difficult but you do still need a good level of fitness. Don't bother taking a walking stick on the glacier, it doesn't really help, unless you want to poke things with it and be made fun of by your mates on FB, Our guide, Dave, was very informative about the geology of the area and chipping out steps for us to climb up. All in all, brilliant.
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