Information on the Tongariro Crossing for those planning to do the walk.
(Note – Extreme Backbackers does not provide this service)
It is extremely important that you bring the right gear along with you for the winter crossing. For a full list of what to bring refer to the equipment lists in your required season below.

Please select the tab to view the information:

Summer CrossingWinter CrossingNorthern Circuit

Summer Crossing

TN_summerArguably New Zealand’s best one day walk through the stunning scenery of the Tongariro National Park, the traverse of the stark and spectacular volcanic terrain of Mt. Tongariro is one of the most fascinating treks in the country. Among the highlights of this seven to eight hour trek are steaming vents and hot springs, old lava flows, beautiful water filled explosion craters and stunning views. On clear days you can see Mt. Taranaki in the west, Mt. Ngauruhoe, the Kaimanawa Ranges, Lake Taupo and beyond.

The mountains of Tongariro National Park are sacred to the Maori, so please tread carefully and with respect.

Equipment Needed:

  • Food and plenty of fluid, especially on hot days
  • Rainproof coat (overtrousers are a good idea too)
  • Sturdy boots
  • Warm woollen or polypropylene clothing – cotton clothes don’t keep you warm when its wet
  • Woollen hat and gloves or mittens
  • Sun protection
  • Personal first aid kit
  • Map and compass – important in poor visibility

Summer crossings are subject to numbers weather and other factors.

Winter Crossing

TN_winterFew people are lucky enough to experience the beauty of the crossing in winter (snow and Ice conditions) and we thoroughly recommend the trip – there are less people and the vistas on a clear crisp winter’s day are breathtaking.

Equipment Needed:

  • Food and plenty of fluid, especially on hot days
  • Rainproof coat (overtrousers are a good idea too)
  • Sturdy boots
  • Warm woollen or polypropylene clothing – cotton clothes don’t keep you warm when its wet
  • Woollen hat and gloves or mittens
  • Sun protection
  • Personal first aid kit
  • Map and compass – important in poor visibility
  • Rainproof coat and overtrousers
  • Fleece Top
  • 2 x Thermal/Wool Tops
  • Thermal long johns
  • Leather/warm tramping boots
  • Warm Woollen hat and warm gloves
  • Thick Socks

Winter crossing is subject to numbers weather and other factors.

Northern Circuit

TN_northernWinding its way over Tongariro and around Ngauruhoe is the Tongariro Northern Circuit, one of the great walks of New Zealand. This walk passes through stunning land formations which include volcanic craters and glacial valleys. The full Northern Circuit walk takes three to four days to complete.

The most popular time of year for this walk is summer, December through to March. Within these months the track is clear of snow and the weather is less severe. In the winter months experience with ice axes and crampons is needed for this totally alpine trip. But with adequate clothing, equipment and experience, people can visit and enjoy the area this time of year.

Equipment Needed:

Summer Crossing

  • Food and plenty of fluid, especially on hot days
  • Rainproof coat (overtrousers are a good idea too)
  • Sturdy boots
  • Warm woollen or polypropylene clothing – cotton clothes don’t keep you warm when its wet
  • Woollen hat and gloves or mittens
  • Sun protection
  • Personal first aid kit
  • Map and compass – important in poor visibility

Winter Crossing additions

  • Rainproof coat and overtrousers
  • Fleece Top
  • 2 x Thermal/Wool Tops
  • Thermal long johns
  • Leather/warm tramping boots
  • Warm Woollen hat and warm gloves
  • Thick Socks

Winter crossing is subject to numbers weather and other factors.