Explore the spectacular alpine terrain of the Aoraki Mt Cook region in the South Island of New Zealand with this entry level mountaineering mini-expedition from 20th - 24th February 2020.
Join us as we trek through amazing alpine terrain, surrounded by New Zealand's highest peaks and longest glaciers. This adventure will allow you the opportunity to learn basic mountaineering skills, summit a peak, explore unique alpine landscapes and soak in incredible views. This is a trip for all the truly adventurous people among us!
Dates: Thursday 20th - Monday 24th Febrary 2020
Accommodation: 1 night in Lodge in Tekapo, 2 nights in a private Backcountry Hut, 1 night in 4.5 star Hotel in Christchurch
Food: Lunch x 3, Dinner x 2, Breakfast x 3 and Refreshments (wholefood, nutritious meals with vegetarian and gluten-free options)
Max group size: 8
Investment: $2995 pp
This 5-day Mt Cook Aoraki Adventure is designed to give you:
an incredible blast of adventure in a spectacular natural landscape
an adventure where you can get out of your comfort zone and learn new skills
an exhilarating break from the stresses of everyday life
a powerful fitness goal to inspire and motivate you towards better health.
DAY 1 - christchurch - Lake Tekapo
On Day 1, we’ll arrive in Christchurch. We will then be transported in a private vehicle through the stunning scenery to Lake Tekapo. We'll be staying in a spacious lodge that sits near the shores of Lake Tekapo, with Mt Cook as the dramatic backdrop, beckoning us upwards. After a trek briefing and gear check with our two incredible mountain guides, join us for a group meal at the local pub and soak up the atmosphere of this beautiful town! D
DAY 2 – lake Tekapo to caroline hut (6 HOURS HIKING)
After a delicious breakfast, we will be transported by minivan to Mount Cook Township (about 1 hour). We transfer to a 4WD vehicle and drive as far as possible, parallel to the Tasman Glacier. We will then climb 850m up the Ball Ridge to Caroline Hut at 1820m, perched right opposite the awe-inspiring Caroline Face of Mount Cook. We will be led by two professional mountain guides for the 3 days on the mountain. When we arrive at our private hut, views take in Aoraki Mount Cook and Mount Tasman, all the mountains adjoining the Tasman Glacier, and Lake Pukaki. The pot bellied stove will be fired up to keep us warm and toasty on the mountain! BLD
DAY 3 – CAROLINE HUT TO Kaitiaki Peak return (6 HOURS HIKING)
After an early breakfast, we will head off to climb Kaitiaki Peak at 2222m south of Ball Pass and take in the dramatic views of the South Ridge of Aoraki Mt Cook. We will be learning basic mountaineering techniques, using crampons and ice axes. At the end of an incredible day out exploring the mountain, we will arrive back at Caroline Hut in time to watch the sunset on Mt Tasman and the ice avalanches thunder down the Caroline Face. BLD
DAY 4 – Caroline hut to Christchurch (4-5 HOURS HIKING)
Today is our last day on the trail, amongst the majesty of these lofty peaks. After an early breakfast, we'll begin our descent back down the ridge towards Mt Cook Village. We will meet our private transport where you can enjoy the beautiful scenery on our way back to Christchurch. We will arrive in town to our luxurious 4.5 star hotel in downtown Christchurch, where we can have a lovely hot shower after all our exertions! We will meet up for a celebratory group meal in a local restaurant to talk about our awesome achievements. BLD
DAY 5 – Christchurch
After a hearty hotel breakfast, you are free to enjoy the newly rebuilt Christchurch. There are some incredible sights to see, with the creative Kiwi flair on full display. We will transport you back to the airport in time for your return flight. You will have had an unforgettable adventure, with so many exciting stories to tell! B
GUIDES AND SAFETY
For the expedition, you will be accompanied by two professional guides who have current IFMGA/NZMGA certification at a ratio of 4 clients:1guide, with a maximum group size of 8. You will also be hosted throughout the trip by a Primal Adventures guide. The group will have a personal locator beacon, satellite phone and first aid kits.
We will be hiking for around 6 hours each day carrying a 12-14kg pack. High level of fitness required (speak to us if you want to know whether this is suitable for you). Some very steep and exposed areas, and uneven track surfaces.
WHAT TO TAKE
New Zealand experiences very changeable weather. It can be extremely cold at any time of the year and it's necessary to prepare for all conditions and to have good-quality outdoor clothing. Jeans and cotton clothing are not suitable for hiking.
Hiking boots (well broken in and waterproof, that are stiff enough for crampons) *1
shirt (long-sleeved to avoid sunburn/keep cool)
quick-dry trekking pants
2 pairs woollen socks
Thermal leggings - wool or polypro
Thermal top - wool or polypro
sunscreen for face and lips
Water bottle or bladder (minimum 2 litres)
Headlamp or torch with spare battery
Inner sheet for sleeping bag (not the bag itself)
Heavy duty plastic bags or pack liner
Any personal medication
Extra Items - these can be provided free of charge if you do not have your own
backpack minimum 45 litre capacity
long sleeved fleece jacket or puffy jacket
waterproof jacket (with hood)
gloves (polypro gloves are good, but you need warmer gloves or mittens as well)
Change of clothes for Christchurch
Small duffel bag to store any extra gear at Lake Tekapo (i.e. gear you don’t want to take up the mountain)
Shoes for hut i.e. runners
Optional items: Earplugs, camera.
Supplied: Buff (neck warmer/sun protector), crampons, ice axe, Sleeping bags, mattresses, cooking equipment, plates/cutlery, first aid kit, safety equipment and maps.
*1 To test if your boots are suitable for crampons, hold them at toe and heel and try bending the sole around like a banana. If you can do this your boots are too soft.
We will travel between Christchurch and the start/finish of the trek on a private mini-bus. We will also provide transfers to the airport on the final morning.
All the meals as indicated above (BLD) are included in the price. The food is based on nutritious, healthy, wholefood recipes. Please let us know if you have any special dietary requirements.
The tour starts at Christchurch Airport on Thursday 20th February at 2pm. It concludes on Monday 24th February at 2pm at Christchurch Airport. Earlier or later departure times from Christchurch can be arranged.
Includes 3-day guided alpine adventure, 2 nights accommodation in Private Backcountry Hut, 1 night lodge accommodation in Lake Tekapo, 1 night 4.5 star accommodation in Christchurch, transport by private minibus between Christchurch and the trail head, all meals as stated above together with healthy snacks, Department of Conservation permits, first aid kit, safety equipment and cooking equipment.
Excludes travel insurance (compulsory) and flights.
A deposit of $1000 per person is required to secure your place.
Full payment is required 8 weeks before the date of your trek.
More than 20 days prior to departure – 70% refund of full ticket price
20 to 10 days prior to departure – 50% refund of full ticket price
Less than 10 days prior to departure – NO REFUND
Deposits are not refunded.
Comprehensive personal travel insurance is required for this trip. We will also ask you to fill out a disclaimer before you begin your adventure. You must follow the instructions of your guides at all times.
Before the trip you must notify us of any medical condition, medical history, or medications that you are on. In particular, asthma, diabetes, heart conditions, allergies to wasp/ bee stings and food allergies. We will send you a confidential online form to complete prior to the trek.
With any outdoor activity, there is an element of risk. Primal Adventures operates in remote and mountainous areas. Risks in undertaking this activity could include hypothermia due to adverse weather conditions, personal injury, or property damage from hiking over rugged and uneven terrain.
The staff and management of Primal Adventures take all practicable steps to identify and minimise potential dangers. However you must follow our instructions (and use the safety equipment provided) at all times. Adults accompanying any person under the age of 18 must ensure that the underage person follows our instructions at all times. You must release or indemnify Primal Adventures and our staff against any liability we incur to anyone else, resulting from your failure to follow our instructions or the failure of any person accompanying you under the age of 18 to follow our instructions.
Primal Adventures and their guides reserve the right to make any alterations to the itinerary in the interest of safety, comfort or unforeseen circumstances due to causes such as weather, illness, or misadventure. Every reasonable endeavour will be made to keep to published schedules but no guarantee is given. Primal Adventures will not be held liable for costs incurred by change, delay, or the missing of connecting services.
Primal Adventures reserves the right to exclude a person from a tour at anytime if in the opinion of the guide or operator that person may be likely to risk the health, safety or comfort (including unsociable behaviour) of other clients, him or herself, or the environment. In such circumstances Primal Adventures will not be obliged to offer any refund or transfer of ticket.