The nearest town is Turangi, which is about a 20 minute drive from the park, or a 4 hour drive from Auckland or Wellington. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is 19.4 kms and you need an ok level of fitness and a good pair of hiking boots / shoes. Now comes the fun part. Tongariro Alpine Crossing is a one-way trek, so you will need to help yourself by taking a shuttle bus. We parked at the Ketetahi car park and had a shuttle take us to the start of the hike at Mangatepopo. We hiked across a caldera, over flat, squishy, wet volcanic soil and then it was time for one more push to the top. Cheers, Julie. The Tongariro Crossing, the most popular excursion in the park, is a strenuous 19-kilometer day hike over the ridge between Mt. Today, I completed the Tongariro Alpine Crossing. Ruapehu, the Red Crater, small green lakes, and even Lake Taupo off to the north. The full distance of the track is usually 19.4-kilometre (12.1 mi). Although there are a lot of flat sections, there are several incredibly steep parts (you're climbing up a volcano after all! Enjoy Tongariro, it’s a great day! 2012 Tongariro Eruptions from Te Maari Crater, New Zealand Mountain Safety Council's video on the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, "Crossing's new name will give trampers more clues about terrain", tvnz.co.nz: Tongariro ready to be crossed again, "Track description -- Tongariro Alpine Crossing", "Trampers told not to climb Tongariro Crossing's Mount Doom", New Zealand Mountain Safety Council's Tramping Video Series: Tongariro Alpine Crossing, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Tongariro_Alpine_Crossing&oldid=990303972, Hiking and tramping tracks in New Zealand, Wikipedia articles with style issues from March 2009, Articles with unsourced statements from April 2018, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 23 November 2020, at 23:22. It is a fabulous hike, one of our favorites! Not far off the trail was a drop off back down to the caldera. This really is a fantastic hike! The Tongariro Alpine crossing is an 18.5km one way day hike which crosses the volcanic centre of New Zealand’s North Island, between the summits of Mount Tongariro (1967m) and Mount Ngauruhoe (2287m). Don’t get me wrong, the scenery has been amazing. Or you can check out this shuttle service on Get Your Guide. Cheers, Julie, Thanks so much for this post! We started at the Mangatepopo car park and ended at the Ketetahi car park. The walk starts at Mangatepopo (1100m), and terminates at Ketetahi (750m). ). It can get very cool at the summit. Not all treks are created equal, especially those which feature hiking trails at elevation such as the Tongariro Alpine Crossing. Doing the trek in the other direction will add an additional 500 meters in elevation gain to your trek. NZ First missing in action in Napier and Tukituki this election? The volcanic activity of the park is constantly being monitored, with warning signs at various points along the trail alerting hikers what to do if an eruption should occur. Length of Time: 6 to 8 hours The trail is primarily used for hiking and nature trips and is accessible year-round. Given the elevation, there was little room for error, Wanikau said. The views were absolutely worth every effort though. You can either take the side trip up to Mt Ngauruhoe and back then continue on the Manatepopo Saddle between Mt Tongariro and Mt Ngauruhoe. Tongariro Alpine Crossing is a 12.1 mile heavily trafficked point-to-point trail located near Owhango, Manawatu-Wanganui, New Zealand that features a lake and is rated as difficult. There are toilets at both car parks. I know it must’ve been lots of work. Our website uses cookies. The air smelled of sulfur so there would be no picnic stops here, even though the views were amazing. We never hike with poles and we didn’t feel like we needed them on this hike. North Island, New Zealand . Location: Tongariro National Park, North Island of New Zealand. Although the elevation isn't extreme, the landscape is exposed and can be hazardous when there's wind, rain, cloud, and snow. No one was hurt. Mangatepopo sits at a higher elevation than Ketetahi, so starting here eliminates almost 200 meters of climbing. During my 13 years stay in NZ, I completed the walk at least 5 times. The track follows Mangatepopo stream up the valley, climbing over a succession of old lava flows from Ngauruhoe. Distance: 19.4 km (12 miles) point-to-point In August 2012 a small eruption of 10,000 cubic metres of ash from the Te Maari (sometimes spelled Te Māri or Te Mari) craters on Mt Tongariro sent a shower of ash and blocks up to 1m in diameter over the track. View from the summit over the Emerald Lakes, across the Central Crater, to Blue Lake. The last two hours of the walk involve a long descent down the northern flank of the volcano, passing the Ketetahi Hot Springs. It certainly felt like the section round the Red Crater was the steepest climb we'd done on any of the Great Walks. 39.12 S, 175.647 E summit elevation 1978 m Complex volcano. These two kiddos are amazing hikers. , I’m glad you had a great time and thanks for sharing your experience! This should prove to be a very interesting day. I never knew about Tongariro until a few days into the trip (and we only had 8 days in total, while I tried to squeeze in as many places as I could in both North and South Islands!). 39.12 S, 175.647 E summit elevation 1978 m Complex volcano. No permits required, and it’s free! Most of the walk is through raw volcanic terrain. We loved Tongariro, so this is the one I recommend. Now it was time for the walk towards the car park. Anyways, I’ve really enjoyed your blogposts and how informative and true they have been. Things to Know About the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, Planning a trip to New Zealand? Full Day . Tyler and Kara were now determined to get back to our car as quickly as possible, so they really increased our speed. Mt Ruapehu rises to 2797m. Tongariro Tongariro National Park 47 47 46 Red Crater Te Maari craters (Last erupted in 201 ) Great Walk campsite Great Walk hut Shelter Toilet Tongariro Alpine Crossing Other tracks State Highway Other roads 0 1 km ¯ The alpine lakes and summits of the mountains are sacred to the local Māori tribe Ngāti Hikairo ki Tongariro. It is also much more interesting to climb up through the volcanic scenery in the shadow of Mt Doom than to climb up through the monotonous scenery near Ketetahi. In a heartbeat! Poles may be snow covered or destroyed by wind gusts in winter.[3]. Active fumaroles abound on several sections of the walk, constantly emitting steam and sulphur dioxide gas into the air and depositing yellow sulphur specks around their edges. Hiking this direction, you will ascend 765 meters (2,510 feet) over the first 8.3 kilometers and then descend 1,125 meters (3,690 feet) over the final 11.1 kilometers, including a steep slope of loose rock that would be tiring to hike up in the opposite direction. Wow, a helicopter evacuation! Do we now have boasting rights for finishing this hike? Your email address will not be published. You bet. As a result, returning to the western end requires, retracing the 19.4 km crossing, walking 26 km via State Highways 46 and 47 back to the other trailhead, or completing the Tongariro Northern Circuit. We offer multiple departure and return times daily, to and from a pick up point near you, including the brand new National Park Village transport hub. Amazing from the time we got picked up from Adventure HQ from outside our house (this company does door to door pick up and drop off for the same cost as the larger companies amazing service. Day Trek. Try to avoid weekends. Would thoroughly recommend this walk and would use Adventure HQ as my transport again. Hearing this gave us high expectations for the day. About 100 people were in the vicinity including a group of 20 13-year-old students from Gulf Harbour school but no one was injured. North Island, New Zealand . Tongariro National Park is located on the North Island of New Zealand. Fumaroles remain active around the active rim of Te Maari crater and there is a strong smell of sulphur gas close to the rim.[7]. While we were there people were falling and sliding, one woman broke a finger and another young lady wrenched her knee and was evacuated by helicopter at the bottom of the hill. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is usually walked from Mangatepopo in the Ruapehu region to Ketetahi Hot Springs, due to the Mangatepopo end being higher in altitude (1,120 m or 3,670 ft) than the Ketetahi Hot Springs end (760 m or 2,490 ft), therefore requiring less climbing. In poor weather, it could be pretty miserable, if not dangerous. You can do the hike in either direction, but most people go from Mangatepopo to Ketetahi. Haha). You will gain 765 meters elevation and lose 1125 meters if you hike from Mangatepopo car park to Ketetahi car park. From the highest point of the hike we had 360° views of Tongariro National Park. The track is usually to windward of Te Maari as the prevailing wind is west to south west in this region. This challenging trip begins at 1120 m, climbs the Mangatepopo Valley to the saddle between Mount Tongariro and Mount Ngauruhoe, through South Crater before climbing again to Red Crater, the highest point on the crossing at 1886m. Thanks for sharing! The Tongariro Alpine track was closed for 4 days but the other 12 tracks on the mountains were left open. On the elevation map, the Tongariro Northern Circuit doesn't look too hard. It’s a total of 800 meters elevation gain and 1125 meters elevation loss (if you hike from Mangatepopo to Ketetahi). The final climb was steep, strenuous, and almost a little dangerous. El sendero se usa principalmente para hacer senderismo y viajes por la … The rāhui starts today Friday 10 January and will be lifted at sunrise on Monday. [6], There are no guaranteed fresh water supplies on the walk. Tongariro and the perfectly shaped Mt. Cheers, Julie. Some areas feature large springs emitting near-boiling water and torrents of steam. [3][4], The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is usually walked from Mangatepopo in the Ruapehu region to Ketetahi Hot Springs, due to the Mangatepopo end being higher in altitude (1,120 m or 3,670 ft) than the Ketetahi Hot Springs end (760 m or 2,490 ft), therefore requiring less climbing. Solidified lava flows, loose tephra, and solidified volcanic lava bombs abound. Hi Juile – thank you for a great blog post, looks like an amazing hike. When mixed with rain the ash forms a gritty mud. Most natural water in the area is not drinkable. The lowest point is 760 meters above sea level at the Ketetahi car park. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing spans the length of Mt Tongariro (19.4Ks) and takes about 7-8 hours to complete. Already we have a little of that danger that we have been so desiring! Distance – 19.4 km hike (about 12 miles) Time – 6 to 8 hours; Elevation Gain – 736 meters; Elevation Loss – 1,236 meters; Trek start is at 1,150 meters elevation; Highest point on trek is at 1,886 meters; Trek end is at 650 meters; The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is usually done in one way, beginning at Mangatepopo and ending at the Ketetahi carpark. With Mt Doom looming over us we took some family photos and ate a snack of apples and granola bars. Cook, if time permitted you to do either one or the other, not both, which would you choose? I thought it was just a long hike with some elevation, I had… By the time we got to the car park all of us were tired, our legs were sore, and our toes were bruised from bumping on the fronts of our shoes during the long descent. +64 7892 2751. – Julie, I’ve yet to hike the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, but I’m planning on visiting Mt Doom within the next 12 months. Our family thoroughly enjoyed the Tongariro Alpine Crossing. The Tongariro Crossing transport services aim to get you to the track for this time. I’m so glad that I made up my mind to go there, because like you wrote, it’s one of the best hikes I’ve ever been on! Our hike started at the Mangatepopo car park at 8:30 am. hike with about 900m of elevation gain (and more elevation in descent) gives great views of mountains (e.g., Mt. [5] The crossing takes about seven hours of steady walking to complete in good weather, taking longer in winter or if walked from the Ketetahi end.[5]. The mountains of Tongariro are considered sacred in the local Maori culture, and it became New Zealand’s first national park in 1894. [citation needed], Until 2007 the crossing was called the "Tongariro Crossing", but this was changed to the "Tongariro Alpine Crossing" to emphasize the extreme weather on the exposed terrain. Tongariro Alpine Crossing distance, elevation and difficulty. Favorite Hike: Tongariro Alpine Crossing, North Island, NZ . It was a steep descent down to the thermal pools. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is a 19.4 km hike, estimated to take between six and eight hours. You will then descend on a volcanic rock scree track to the vivid Emerald Lakes, known as Ngarotopounamu (greenstone-hued … Even if you’re not that into hiking you’ll probably love the Tongariro Crossing … Long-ish with decent elevation, but worth it. Crowds are to be expected but the Crossing is worth it—views are spectacular throughout and the volcanic experience is tough to rival. Seriously, it’s something everyone should do – unless the person is a codger!!! It is a point to point hike so you will need to arrange transportation to either the start or finish of the hike. Grade: Easy – allow 1 – 1 and a half hours Earth Trekkers is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn advertising fees by advertising & linking to Amazon.com. For the most part, the most dramatic scenery was behind us, except for a few small surprises here and there. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing, as the name suggests, crosses the Alpine terrain of the multi-cratered Mount Tongariro, an active volcano. If you want to read about and watch the Tongariro Alpine Crossing … We parked at Ketetahi. Warning that some others we passed were taking MUCH longer than 8 hours and did not anticipate the physical shape needed to finish the hike. If the mountain looks familiar it is because Peter Jackson chose this location to be the dreaded Mount Doom in the Lord of the Rings. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is a difficult day walk. There was no threat of eruption today, but this is the same volcano that erupted seven years ago. This page shows the elevation/altitude information of Tongariro National Park, New Zealand, including elevation map, topographic map, narometric pressure, longitude and latitude. We hiked through an active volcano that last erupted in 2012. Tongariro Alpine Crossing is 19.4km of pure rugged New Zealand beauty. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. The crossing takes about seven hours of steady walking to complete in good weather, taking longer in winter or if walked from the Ketetahi end. Review of Tongariro Alpine Crossing Reviewed December 27, 2018 via mobile This 19.4 km (16 mile?) At a comfortable speed with plenty of stops for photos (or resting – we are not judging), it takes between 7-8 hours to complete. Cheers, Julie. Tongariro Crossing is worth it. Thankyou so much for this article! How did you organise this? The crater is visible from the Ketetahi area. Mount Tongariro is an active volcano; It is also known as one of the best day hikes that you can do in NZ; It is a 19.5 km long, with 765 meters elevation gain, followed by another descent of 1,125 meters elevation if you hike from Mangatepopo car park to Ketetahi car park; It … Cheers, Julie. Thank you Tim and Julie for your insights , Hello Annabelle. Featuring extending volcanic terrain, unique and dramatic landforms and a range of endemic flora and fauna this world-renowned day hike is full of extremes and surprises. Amazing experience! The highest point is found at 1,886 meters in height, at the summit … By far it was our favorite hike in New Zealand and now one of our favorites in the world. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is a one-way 19.4km track. Except for the sunburn, that part sucks. Tongariro National Park (/ ˈ t ɒ ŋ ɡ ə r ɪr oʊ /; Māori: [tɔŋaɾiɾɔ]) is the oldest national park in New Zealand, located in the central North Island.It has been acknowledged by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site of mixed cultural and natural values.. Tongariro National Park was the sixth national park established in the world. Tongariro Alpine Crossing Tongariro Alpine Crossing Difficulty. The hike climbs up through volcanic terrain, with old lava fields, walks through giant calderas, and even past a smoking, steaming volcano that erupted just six years ago. The hiking trail itself is 19.4 kilometers, you start at an elevation of 1120m before climbing to a maximum altitude of 1886m and then dropping down to 760m as you finish the hike - this makes for a total climb of 766m. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing, as the name suggests, crosses the Alpine terrain of the multi-cratered Mount Tongariro, an active volcano. The trek begins at the end of Mangatepopo Road and there are toilets and little shelter. This 19.4 km (16 mile?) Arguably New Zealand’s best day hike, the Tongariro Crossing hike, is situated in the center of New Zealand’s North Island. Tyler and Kara were thrilled not only to be hiking around a volcano but to also be hiking around a volcano featured in one of their favorite movies. It is a 19.4 km hike from start to finish. Experts call it the ‘atmospheric lapse rate’ - put simply this means that as we rise from the Central Plateau (800 metres above sea level) to Tongariro’s highest point (the Red Crater at 1,886 metres) you can expect the circulating air will become an average of 10°C colder. In late November 2012 Te Maari crater again erupted an ash cloud 4,000m high over a 5-minute period. The crossing is a linear journey, starting on the west side of Mount Tongariro and finishing on the north side. Have a great hike! Our family took closer to the 8 hours due to more frequent breaks and jet lag exhaustion with the kids. The scree hill was a big surprise but we all had hiking poles which kept us from falling like so many others on the trail. On the way down from the Tongariro Alpine Crossing we could see the Te Maari Crater, sending plumes of white steam into the sky. Located in Tongariro National Park, this 19.4km day hike takes you through the Mangatepopo Valley with magnificent views of Mount Ngauruhoe. Cheers, Julie. The highest point on the Tongariro Alpine Crossing is Red Crater (1886m). We drank every drop of the 2-3 liters EACH we carried, so bring enough water as you can’t get water on the trail. The lakes and pools on the walk are deeply coloured by the volcanic minerals dissolved in them. After the climb to the saddle, the path takes descents and ascents into and back out of two different craters, passing the Emerald Lakes and along the edge of the Blue Lake. In the morning, we took the shuttle to Mangetepopo and hiked back to our car. Because of atmospheric lapse rate, the ambient temperature will be about 10°C colder at the summit than at Taupo.” Honestly, New Zealand has left us feeling a little disappointed with its hikes. In particular, there is one downhill section of thick dirt and gravel. In some crater areas it is finer ash that has become moist and compacted. The Tongariro Crossing is a spectacular hike! We want a little drama, with ever-changing views and sections that are technically difficult. Tongariro National Park was made more famous by its star appearance in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, like so many places in New Zealand. Elevation Change: Starting elevation is 1100 m (Mangatepopo car park) and ending elevation is 800 m (Ketetahi car park) Tongariro Alpine Crossing Elevation Map from here We reached the top of the staircase and took in the view while basking in the joy of our first alpine experience. 1 Day Tour. For part of the way, Tim and I were almost jogging to keep up with them. At first we were cold and wearing hats and gloves, but all of this would quickly change. Mt Ruapehu rises to 2797m. Tongariro Volcano | John Seach. And finally, have fun and enjoy it! Read all of our articles in our. Even on a bright sunny day the Tongariro Crossing weather can change in an instant. We figured out how to slide down through the gravel, almost like skiing, getting to the bottom in almost no time at all. Incredible scenery, Julie! On the third day, we woke up at 4.00 am so we could make our 4.50 am bus to the base of the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, a 19.4km hike in New Zealand’s oldest national park - a dual World Heritage Site. Although the elevation isn't extreme, the landscape is exposed and can be hazardous when there's wind, rain, cloud, and snow. Doom from Lord of the Rings), volcanoes, lava fields, craters, crater lakes, and ponds. Although the route is marked with poles, it is quite common in poor weather for visibility to be severely reduced. Tongariro Alpine Crossing Weather The Central Plateau lower elevation is about 800m above sea level (AMSL). Tourist brochures and government-sponsored websites alike advertise the Tongariro Alpine Crossing as the best one-day tramp in the country. Our Tour. The Tongariro Crossing starts at the Mangatepopo Car Park, which is at the southern end of the trail – you can, of course, make the hike in either direction – at an elevation of 1,120 meters. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is 19.4 kms and you need an ok level of fitness and a good pair of hiking boots / shoes. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is usually done in one way, beginning at Mangatepopo and ending at the Ketetahi carpark. My question to you is will it help if I use exercise poles for support and balance as i see that there is a lot of scree on the track. This challenging trip begins at 1120 m, climbs the Mangatepopo Valley to the saddle between Mount Tongariro and Mount Ngauruhoe, through South Crater before climbing again to Red Crater, the highest point on the crossing at 1886 m. We did the entire hike in six hours and ten minutes, including our breaks for food and photos. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a day hike with this much variety and unique landscapes anywhere else in the world. My brother and I are hoping to do this hike early December while holidaying from Australia. You can hike alone or choose to take a guide. The trail is primarily used for hiking and nature trips and is accessible year-round. In 2006, two people of an estimated 65,000 walkers died on the track. I enjoyed reading your experience in Tongariro. In 1990 and 1993, UNESCO honored Tongariro National Park as a World Heritage Area and Cultural Landscape. We have seen this a lot, too. [1] The Tongariro National Park is a World Heritage site which has the distinction of dual status, as it has been acknowledged for both its natural and cultural significance.[2]. Thankyou so much! We are thinking of leaving our camper van at the Ketetahi carpark and catching a shuttle back to the beginning of the hike. If you’re in the middle of the hike there is little you can do prepare, but there are some steps you can take beforehand to ensure a great day. There were multiple warnings that we were in active volcano territory and to not leave the trail. Did you have to book this shuttle and how much did it cost? The Tongariro Alpine Crossing, in good weather is a fantastic experience. I’m so thrilled to stumble across your blog! Yes, there is a lot of scree on the trail. Although I would add that many parts of the trek we didn’t enjoy that much and found quite monotonous, as we were busy catching our breaths. Tongariro Crossing Weather Warning . The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is a challenging hike, but absolutely worth it! As the crossing is easily accessible, it is walked by large numbers of tourists and casual walkers each year. I recommend booking the shuttle in advance to make sure you have a seat. The walk starts at Mangatepopo (1100m), and terminates at Ketetahi (750m). The track winds up the Mangatepopo Valley to the saddle between Tongariro and Ngauruhoe. This page shows the elevation/altitude information of Tongariro National Park, Manawatu-Wanganui, New Zealand, including elevation map, topographic map, narometric pressure, longitude and latitude. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is one of the best day hikes in New Zealand, and some would say the entire world! For the entire trilogy, Frodo and Sam are trying to get to Mt Doom in order to destroy the infamous ring. However, you should do what you feel comfortable with. The blocks damaged the roof of the Ketetahi hut which is 1.5 km west of the explosive craters. I totally loved it and each time I did it, I found its different beauty. Tongariro Volcano | John Seach. Exercise poles are not necessary, however, if you feel more comfortable using them, then bring them. Tongariro Crossing Map and Fact Sheets Please find below a copy of the DOC pdf files of the Tongariro Alpine Crossing in English, French and German. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is located in the Tongariro National Park - New Zealand's oldest national park and a dual World Heritage Site. It was steep and tiring and had us pausing to catch our breath occasionally, but the higher we got the better the views became. 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