Challenge #1 – Tongariro Alpine Crossing

Let me enlighten you:

I went to the gym.
For two years.
I stopped.
Two years ago.

I think you know where this is going. I am unfit, and instead of doing the whole new years resolution (I think it’s a bit too late for that anyway) of going to the gym I am going to be different. I’m going to tramp.

Challenge numero uno. tongariro-on-map

The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is heralded as the best one-day trek available in New Zealand, while others say it ranks among the top ten single-day treks in the world.

Nearly everyone who resides in New Zealand has done the Mount Tongariro Crossing and although I’ve done some day tramps in Auckland, I haven’t explored the wider North Island. What better to start off with then The Tongariro Alpine Crossing. The exact number of people isn’t confirmed yet but there will be at least seven of us going. The place is booked for the 1st of Feb and on the 2nd we begin our tramp in the wee early morning hours so that we are not out all day. Let me educate you (and myself) about this crossing!

Length: 19.45 km
Duration: 7-9 hours
Difficulty: Weather dependent

Mangatepopo Carpark to Soda Springs
Duration: 90 minutes
Grade: Easy

The first section of the walk seems fairly flat as it can be seen in the graph above. I am glad that it starts of flat because I need to build myself up for the hard parts.


Soda Springs to South Crater
40 – 60 minutes
Grade: Moderate
This is where the tramp starts to become steep rising from 1400m to 1600m. This is going to be scenic because if the weather is clear, Mt. Taranki’s volcanic cone can be seen.


Soda Springs to South Crater
60 minutes
Grade: Difficult
Oh yes! Difficulty Level : I am going to die, but at least I will be looking out over a beautiful view


Red Crater to Blue Lake
30 minutes
Grade: Moderate
After the steep trek I will be rewarded!!! We will get to see old lava flow from Red Crater spreading out to the central crater as well as Emerald Lakes!
The photos speak for themselves. These thirty minutes might just make up for the whole journey!


Blue Lake to Ketetahi Hut
60 minutes
Grade: Moderate
Walk down – no explanation needed. I wonder how I would be feeling…


What do I hope to achieve? A new experience, push my boundaries and if I enjoy it perhaps it will be my new ‘thing’ and a step towards becoming fit again?
Here are some more photos that I keep staring at and getting very excited!! I will definitely do an update on this  after I’ve completed the tramp.



Have you ever tramped? How did you find it?

5 responses to “Challenge #1 – Tongariro Alpine Crossing

  1. wish you much joy! Are there steep cliffs you need to walk on? or just mountainsides and up and down? Looks like something I might give a go one day… please report back on your experience.

    • I think it’s just mountainside and hopefully no cliffs! I am looking forward to it as I’ll be leaving for it in less than 24 hours 😀 Will definitely do a blog post sometime next week. Thanks for visiting :))

  2. Pingback: Challenge #3: Sunrise Trekking an Active Volcano | A little girl's road to self discovery·

  3. Beautiful Pics Anna! You know, back when i was in India i always thought of going on a trek. There are some truly wondrous treks in the Himalayas. But Alas! i never found the time (Boring life 😦 ) Anyway lets plan some treks together (in India or elsewhere), hopefully for next year.

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