Tongariro Alpine Crossing

Trip Report: Tongariro Crossing – 23.06.21

Last week I was fortunate enough to be able to tag along with one of Adrift’s TAC guided walks. Besides getting Our Great Outdoors off the ground, I’m also on a mission to get NZOIA certified and eventually feel comfortable leading experiences like this myself.

Being able to spend time with Hiro, the Adrift guide for the day, was a great opportunity to get a sense of what guiding entails. Admittedly, it was a fairly straightforward day with a small group who were all reasonably fit and up for anything. The only challenge was the wind (gusting 50km/h+ above Red Crater) and cloud which came in just as we reached the highest point.

Here are a few more photos from the day.

Tongariro Alpine Crossing
Tongariro Alpine Crossing
Tongariro Alpine Crossing
Tongariro Alpine Crossing
Tongariro Alpine Crossing

As you can see, it was a little frosty, but still too early in the season for snow. Hopefully by this time next month the crossing will be covered and then it will be a whole new experience, and time to break out the crampons.

Tongariro Alpine Crossing

Remember that cloud I mentioned earlier…

Tongariro Alpine Crossing
Tongariro Alpine Crossing

From the Northern Circuit junction, we headed across Central Crater in eery silence, making our way up the ridge towards Blue Lake which was just a faint glimmer through the clouds. We didn’t hang around for long, but long enough to speak to, I think a French couple, who had passed us earlier that morning as we left the Mangatepopo parking, had come all the way to Blue Lake and were now heading back to Mangatepopo. They were looking rather cold at this point, one of them in jeans and without a proper jacket. When will people learn?

Tongariro Alpine Crossing

As a reward for our perseverance, the weather gods decided to lift the clouds as we headed towards the old Ketetahi Hut site, revealing this stunning view of Lake Rotoaira and Lake Taupo in the distance.

Tongariro Alpine Crossing

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