Tongariro Alpine Crossing – The Highest Mountain Crossing in the World
Among all the wonders that are found in New Zealand, the highest mountain crossing is found in the Tongariro National Park. The crossing has a height of 1,234 meters, or 3,964 feet, and is a popular destination for hikers. It is a spectacular experience, as you pass through three unique landscapes: the Red Crater, the Devil’s Staircase, and Ketetahi Springs. The crossing is a must-see for any visitor to New Zealand.
Located in the mountains, the Tongariro Alpine Crossing showcases some of New Zealand’s most impressive volcanic landscapes. The trail features steep climbs and descents, and evocative views of the North Island. This hike is challenging but not dangerous. If you are prepared, you can complete the hike in six to nine hours.
To get to the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, you can either drive to the National Park or use shuttles. The park has huts and toilets, but cell phone coverage is limited. To avoid getting lost, you may want to book a guided hike.
During the summer, the park can become very busy, with 3,000 people walking through the park every day. In the winter, the weather can be cold and winds can come out of nowhere. In these conditions, ice picks and crampons are necessary. If you don’t feel comfortable, you can turn back and try again later.
The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is 19.4 km long. The first half starts from the Mangatepopo Car Park, which is located at a relatively low elevation. During the second half, the hike passes through the Red Crater, the highest point in New Zealand. Depending on the weather, visibility may be limited to 10 meters.
Tongariro National Park has been expanded twice. The first 250 km2 were added in 1887. Today, the park encompasses nearly 800 km2 of land. The park is classified as a mixed World Heritage Area. It has a great cultural significance to the Maori people.
The Tongariro Alpine crossing has become the most popular day hike in New Zealand. The trail features a steep climb, which can be challenging for first-time hikers. To prepare for the hike, you will need a good level of fitness, a few practice hikes, and special skills. You will also need to ensure that you have good footwear, an ice axe, and crampons.
You can expect to spend 6 to 9 hours on the hike, although some people complete the hike in less time. If you need to get help, you can call 111.
Visiting Tongariro National Park and seeing the Devil’s Staircase is an amazing experience. This staircase is a vertical stretch that takes you up and across lava flows. You will also get panoramic views of the national park.
It is not a walk in the park, and requires some serious heart and lung power. Devil’s Staircase is actually part of a larger staircase. You will also get to see Mt. Taranaki and other volcanoes in the area.
The staircase takes you to the top of a crater and back down again. It is one of the most spectacular sights in New Zealand. Seeing the Emerald Lakes is also a highlight of the trip. These lakes are alpine lakes that were formed by volcanic activity. Their color comes from minerals leaching from the rocks around them. They are a blue and green color.
This is one of the most popular day hikes in New Zealand. The trail is about 19km long and is free. If you want to see the sights, you should start the trail at 8am. You can also rent a shuttle to take you there and back for $150 NZD.
The first part of the trail is relatively flat. There is a boardwalk around the base of the mountain. Then you will have to cross a few volcanic rocks and debris. If you are a confident hiker, you should be able to complete the trail in less than eight hours. If you are not confident, it will take you much longer.
The next part of the hike is a steep climb. The climb is not technically difficult, but it is a bit of a challenge. It takes you from 1400 metres to 1600 metres in a short distance. The climb will take about 45 minutes to 75 minutes.
You should also see the Red Crater. This is the highest point on the Tongariro Crossing. You will also get to see Mount Doom, aka Mount Ngauruhoe. Mount Doom is the highest peak in New Zealand, and is also featured in the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
Whether you are looking for a scenic hike or a challenging trek, the Tongariro Crossing is a popular day trip in New Zealand. You can hike in either direction, but it is best to start at Mangatepopo Car Park.
Depending on your level of fitness, you can expect to be hiking for up to seven hours. You will pass through a series of scenic waterfalls, craters, streams and open tussock land. You will also be climbing alongside old lava flows.
One of the highlights of the Tongariro Alpine Crossing is the Devil’s Staircase, a 200-metre climb in a short distance. After passing through this stretch, you will be on an exposed ridge and will be able to enjoy the view of Red Crater.
Ketetahi Hut is a day-use shelter that is located near Ketetahi Springs. There is no drinking water in the hut. It is intended for use with filtered rainwater and waste bags are provided.
Tongariro Alpine Crossing is a 19.4-kilometer (12-mile) trail that starts at Mangatepopo Car Park. There are parking restrictions of four hours at the end of Ketetahi Road. The hike is recommended to be done in October to April.
The Tongariro Crossing is also known as the “Mt. Doom hike.” This volcano was the inspiration for the film Mt. Doom, which was filmed in New Zealand. In addition, the Tongariro Crossing has been featured in the Lord of the Rings movie.
During the eruption of Te Maari Crater, Ketetahi Hut was hit by rocks and boulders. It was also damaged by falling debris. The hut was destroyed, but was not in use during the eruption.
The hut has holes in the floor and roof. It is not recommended to swim in the Blue Lake, as it is sacred. You can also visit the Lahar Hazard Zone, which is located in Te Maari Crater. The hut is no longer open for overnight stays.
Tongariro Crossing is primarily a day trip, and you should expect to be out for a minimum of seven hours. During longer days, the chance of encountering snow is lower. You should also ensure that you have the proper equipment before heading out on the trail.
Located on Mount Tongariro, Ketetahi Springs is a thermal area that is not part of the Tongariro Alpine Crossing. However, the landowners, the Ketetahi Trust, have given permission for trekkers to cross part of their land, including the area surrounding Ketetahi Hut.
Ketetahi Hut is located near the Ketetahi Hot Springs. It has toilets and views of Lake Taupo and Lake Rotoaira. However, the hut was damaged in recent volcanic eruptions. It was not being used at the time, so it was struck by rocks.
Tongariro Alpine Crossing begins at the Mangatepopo car park. The track is 19.4 kilometers long, with a height gain of about 340 meters. The track passes through the Lahar Hazard Zone, a region where the land is unstable underfoot. The track also passes two old lava flows, and climbs through podocarp forest to reach a height of about 1,886 meters.
There are two options for hiking the Tongariro Alpine Crossing. A shuttle bus can be arranged from the National Park Village, or from Whakapapa. The shuttle buses depart from both locations daily, and cost $40 per person round trip. During the summer months, the car park is closed.
The Alpine Crossing track is part of the three-day Tongariro Northern Circuit tramping route. The track starts at an altitude of about 1100 meters, and ascends through arid-alpine tussock and podocarp forest to a height of about 1,886 meters. It then descends a volcanic scree slope to Emerald Lakes. The Emerald Lakes have been enhanced by dissolved minerals from a nearby thermal area.
The Alpine Crossing can be completed in either direction, but it is recommended to hike in the direction of the Mangatepopo car park. The hike takes about 7 – 8 hours, depending on how many stops you make along the way. The track is relatively level, but there are some steep sections.
Tongariro Crossing is best completed in the autumn or winter, when the weather is nice and snowy. During the summer months, the weather can change quickly and the track is best completed early in the morning.