Where Will You Trek in 2023?World's Best Mountain RangesView Top 10

7 Days$6150USD

  • 7 days trekking & mountaineering
  • 6 nights Colin Todd hut or tent camp
  • 6 Dinners
  • 7 Lunches
  • 6 Breakfasts
Entry level Mountaineering or Exploratory Treks

Trip highlights

  • Attempt summit of Mount Aspiring - all 3027m!
  • Experience the adrenaline rush of the helicopter ride from road end to mountain side
  • 1:1 climber to NZMGA qualified guide ratio means you've the best chance of summit success
  • Revel in the views from the summit with endless glaciers and snowfields stretching from coast to coast
  • Enjoy the company of fellow climbers and the shelter of a small mountain hut perched high on Aspiring’s NW ridge
  • Brush up on your climbing techniques as part of a warm up ascents on some of the smaller peaks nearby over two days
  • Wind down from your high as you move back down the valley enjoying the transition from snow to tussock to beech forest.

Mt Aspiring from Buchanan ridge&#160;-&#160;<i>Photo:&#160;Chris Buykx</i>

Mt Aspiring is a majestic, soaring peak and a challenging climb. Known to the indigenous people of New Zealand – the Maori, as Tititea, ‘the glistening one’, Mt Aspiring exemplifies much of what a real ‘classic’ mountain represents. From some aspects it has formidable sheer faces and from others it has fine graceful lines that culminate in it's sharply defined summit. In short – Mt Aspiring inspires the urge to strap on those crampons and climb!

With a 1:1 guide ratio, this trip will provide a mountaineering experience where your partner looks after the detail and leaves you to concentrate on the climbing. The descent and walk out option provides an amazing transition from the snow and ice of the Bonar glacier, through the high alpine tussocks and the beech forests of the valley below.

Trip Code: MAC

Meet your guide in Wanaka for a briefing, we will confirm the time and place on booking, it is preferable to stay the night before the trip in Wanaka to ensure an early start. You will complete a thorough check gear, drive to the road end and fly into the mountains in the early afternoon. A two hour walk across the Bonar Glacier takes you to Colin Todd hut. Colin Todd Hut is located at the base of the North West ridge. It is a strenuous 1.5 day walk or a short helicopter flight. Flying in makes best use of your available good weather. By using helicopter access you can maximise your energy on the mountain, and the time spent climbing. Fresh food can also be taken in. After flying to Bevan Col there is an 1.5 hour walk to Colin Todd Hut, across the Bonar Glacier. Camping may sometimes be required due to the limited bed capacity at Colin Todd Hut and we will provide tents and other camping gear, if required.

Meals:  L,D

Your guide will take you through several skills sessions including basic snowcraft and cramponing skills, crevasse rescue, climbing alpine rock and ascending steep snow and ice.

Meals:  B,L,D

Acclimatisation day, ascend a smaller peak such as Mt Bevan or Rolling Pin. Your leader will assess your skills and capacity to undertake Mount Aspiring at this point.

Meals:  B,L,D

Summit day, start 3am, and finish as late as 7pm - OR contingency day. We generally undertake the North West Ridge route, a long day of climbing 1,220 vertical metres over 10-12 hours - including travel across glaciated terrain and pitched climbing. The climb takes 10 to 12 hours return from Colin Todd Hut (1,800 metres). We climb either via the ‘Ramp’ in the earlier parts of the season (October through December). The Ramp involves sustained moderately-angled pitched climbing with two ice tools. The Ramp Route meets with the full North West Ridge about halfway along the ascent. From there, it is technically straightforward but exposed climbing for the last 300 vertical metres to the summit. Fantastic views are had from this point in space; to Aoraki in the north, and glaciated valleys to the west, and beyond to the Tasman Sea on a clear day. The upper part of the mountain is climbed via the North West Ridge. This involves moderate snow and ice up to the summit. Your guide will usually short rope you up this, depending on conditions. The descent is via the same route. It requires concentration and good crampon technique. Late Season Variation Full North West Ridge The full North West Ridge is a classic route that is normally climbed later in the season (normally January onwards) after the rock is clean from snow. This route follows the long NW Ridge, requiring a number of pitches and airy exposed traverses around rock pinnacles before meeting the top of the Ramp. Your guide will determine the best route depending on the conditions.

Meals:  B,L,D

Commence walk out, via French Ridge or Bevan Col, depending on conditions. This is a long and demanding trip. You need to be fit able to carrying a moderate-heavy backpack through sometimes steep, untracked terrain for 8–10 hours after a long summit day. The French Ridge route can take up to 1.5 to 2 days, and must be undertaken within the time frame of your trip. Your guide will decide which route is most suitable for weather, snow conditions, and your fitness at the time. This day may also be used as a contingency day.

Meals:  B,L,D

Complete walk out to road end, or fly out (weather permitting, additional cost applies) to vehicle at the road end before driving to Wanaka.

Meals:  B,L


  • Guide Fees and hut fees
  • All meals and snack foods whilst on the trip (day 1 to 5pm day 7)
  • Group equipment such as ropes, tents and stoves
  • Group technical equipment
  • Course manual
  • A NZMGA/IFMGA qualified mountain guide (1:1 guide ratio)
  • Department of Conservation fees
  • ground transport ex Wanaka
  • NZ Goods & Services Tax (GST)
  • Cost of air access to Bevan Col

  • Personal expenses
  • Travel insurance
  • Personal mountaineering equipment not mentioned in inclusions (can be hired)
  • optional flight out

About Your Leader

Professional and experienced mountain guides run the course. We have a commitment to ensure the highest standard of instruction and guiding practices and we only employ guides who share in our philosophy. Our guides will offer you the best possible learning experience, and a safe and enjoyable time. An open and helpful approach is encouraged within the group to help communicate and reinforce the learning process. Our guides are all NZMGA and /or IFMGA internationally qualified. They have been trained and assessed through the New Zealand Mountain Guides Association, and operate to the high standards and guidelines set out by the association.

Departure dates

On request between October - April

* Guaranteed status denotes minimum trip numbers have been met, however the trips operation will be subject to there being no COVID-19 restrictions or other government travel advisories. Please contact us for further information.

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Essential Information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed Mount Aspiring Climb trip notes which contains all the essential information you need to know before booking. Once you’ve booked, we will supply you with a Pre-Departure document which contains a detailed gear list and other important information to help you prepare for your adventure ahead.

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Why travel with us

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Enhancing your journey with authentic experiences, genuine cultural exchange and real exploration are the focal points on all of our adventures. In 2019, we were crowned by our peers as the best in adventure travel at The Travel Awards in Sydney.

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Our vision is to leave the world a better place by following our sustainable active outdoor travel charter. All our adventures are 100% carbon offset and our Regenerative 2030 Project aims to integrate ‘regenerative’ projects into every one of our global operations by 2030.

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 When you book one of our adventures, you will receive quality services at the best prices with plenty of inclusions. There are no hidden costs, single travellers don’t pay more and you’ll enjoy many ‘extra touches’ that ensure your holiday is excellent value for money.

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