When you imagine Glacier Country, you might picture images of heavy snow and icy air that tingles your cheeks as soon as you step outside. And while snow falls at the top of Fox Glacier, the weather is moderate all year round. Even in winter, Fox Glacier doesn’t get the severe cold weather that other glaciers in the northern hemisphere experience.
The best time to go depends on what you want to do and experience. If you want to go glacier hiking and see interesting ice sculptures, winter is amazing for that. If you prefer warmer weather and want to hike through the wonderful rainforests at the foothills of the glacier, the warmer months may be better. But the good news is, you can access and enjoy Fox Glacier all year round.
When is the best time to visit Fox Glacier?
Surprisingly, the winter often has the most reliable weather and the clear skies are more frequent. It’s colder, but with the right clothing and gear, you’ll be good to go. The winter is also the best time to see glacial ice features such as ice crevices, seracs (ice towers) and tunnels. This is because there is less ice melt and less water running under the glacier and sticks around (literally) for longer.
Winter is the rainiest season at Fox Glacier, but you know what rain means… snow on the Southern Alps which feeds the glacier! The surrounding mountains and forests also look and feel even more magical when it’s misty and wet.
The peak season is summer. You’ll still have an amazing time, but there are notably more people so the trails and village will be busier. However, summer is an amazing time to explore the walking trails, mountains and lakes, and generally spend most of the day outdoors thanks to the amount of daylight. Fox Glacier has ice all year round, and the wonderful (and slightly weird) feeling of being in a glacier in a pair of shorts and a t-shirt with the sun blazing above you is like nothing else.
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