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Cloud Piercer

Standing over 3700m tall, Aoraki Mount Cook is New Zealand's tallest mountain. It shares its bed with other mountains of New Zealand's Southern Alps that run up along the west coast of South Island like the spine of a fern leaf. Peeling away from the spine are several valleys, which serve as access routes into this spectacular mountain range. The 40km drive into Aoraki Mount Cook base village begins at the head of Lake Pukaki, a lake formed from the meltwater of two glaciers - Tasman and Hooker - that pumice the feet of their masters in a yearly cycle of advance and retreat. Above these glaciers rise siblings of Mount Cook that can be climbed with relative ease. Images from such locations are included in the following collection, alongside other views of New Zealand's tallest mountain and its surrounding neighbourhood.

click on the first photo to begin a slideshow and press F11 (pc) or ⌘⇧F (mac) to go fullscreen...