DOUBTFUL SOUND

Doubtful Sound is a 420 metres deep (the deepest of all the fiords) and is 40 km long (the second longest of the West Coast Sounds). James Cook sighted the entrance to Doubtful Sound on his first voyage to New Zealand in 1770. He called the place Doubtful Harbour because of the prevailing winds from the west. He thought that if he sailed into the sound it was doubtful that he would be able to sail out.

Our day-long tour began at Pearl Harbour on Lake Manapouri, surrounded by splendid mountains. At West Arm, we boarded a coach which took us to the West Arm Underground Power Station which has a 10 km long tailrace tunnel out to Doubtful Sound. We continued over Wilmot Pass to Deep Cove where we boarded yet another boat and enjoyed the rounded mountains, gorgeous fauna, playful bottle-nose dolphins and the frolicking New Zealand fur seals as we entered the Tasman Sea. It was a very relaxing way to spend the day on the West Coast.