Want to follow in the footsteps of the
conqueror of Mt Everest?
The Southern Alps of New Zealand are the ideal training ground
for aspiring mountaineers. The Alps extend along the spine of the
South Island from the Inland Kaikouras and Nelson Lakes down to
Fiordland and are studded with many impressive peaks. In the Mt
Cook region there are over 20 peaks higher than 3000 metres,
therefore the physical challenges are limitless. This is where
Sir Edmund Hillary honed his technical climbing skills and
mountaineers still flock to the Alps each year to train.
Commercial mountain guiding companies in places like Mt Cook,
Queenstown, Wanaka, Twizel, Tekapo, Fox and Franz Josef, offer a
range of specialised training courses and lead summit climbs on
major peaks. As well as Mt Cook (the highest peak at 3754m)
popular climbs are Mt Aspiring (the Matterhorn of the
South), Mt Tutoko in Fiordlands Darren Range, Mt
Ruapehu on the North Islands volcanic plateau. Guides can
tailor a trip to suit your experience and fitness levels, from a
strenuous classic peak climb to a helicopter landing on the main
divide, or a beautiful trek across the world-renowned Ball or
Tackling New Zealand mountain terrain can be pretty serious stuff
given the fickle weather, strong winds and extreme cold, even in
the November to March climbing season.
If youre up for a challenge this could prove to be the
ultimate New Zealand adventure sport experience for you.