Sadly, pictures (below) can't do this experience justice. We arrived in the parking area at the Fox Glacier, wondering if we had made the right decision in leaving Hokitika, a place to which we have become quite attached. I was ahead of Victor, walking toward the river, full of ice chunks, and crossing it on stepping stones.
You could feel coldness permeating the air, which was warm until you approached. When I saw the glacier, my eyes welled. There was something elemental and enormous at work. It was striated blue, white, and black. An ice fall had recently taken place, you could tell, from the sharp edges on the fallen pieces. All I could say was, "Honey, look."
You were not permitted to approach too close unless you were with a guide (we were not with one). In the pictures of us in front of the glacier, there are black specks on top of it; those are hiking groups with guides. Tiny specks: That should give you a sense of the size of the glacier.