New Zealand Guided Ascents

The Guided Ascents program is specifically designed for experienced climbers who do not require any lead training or acclimatisation.The 5 to 6 day New Zealand Guided Ascents of Mount Cook, Mount Aspiring, and other NZ peaks are suitable for experienced mountaineers only. You must already be a strong climber (as there is no training preparation) and your fitness level must meet the minimum requirement below. Note: you are not required to route find or lead climb during a Guided Ascent, this is the job of your Guide.


NZ Mountain Guided Ascents

You can choose a summit to climb or we can help you to decide on a summit to suit your abilities and aspirations. The Aoraki/Mount Cook (3724m) guided ascent is a popular choice. However, there are a multitude of other interesting and technically challenging mountains to climb throughout the Southern Alps. Other peaks to consider include:
  • Mount Tasman (3489m)
  • Mount Aspiring (3027m)
  • Minarets (3031m east and 3040m west)
  • Sefton (3151m)
  • Malte Brun (3198m)
  • Elie de Beaumont (3117m)
  • Haidinger (3068m)

To maximise chances of a summit, we recommend booking the 6 day Guided Ascent to allow a greater contingency margin for bad weather. Depending on the summit chosen and prevailing weather and snow/ice conditions, the Guided Ascent program would typically incorporate the following:

Typical Guided Ascent Itinerary

Day one: Meet at 8am at Lake Tekapo for introductions, trip briefing, and gear check. From there we Travel to Mount Cook airport and walk or fly into the climbing location. After settling in and coffee break & briefing, we commence ice climbing instruction at nearby ice walls.

Day two to day five: Preparation or summit days, usually involves an early start (eg. 3am) and a long day of up to 12-14 hours depending on the summit/route/conditions and your fitness level. It also allows for adverse weather/climbing conditions which may prevent a summit attempt.

Day six: Return to Lake Tekapo.

Fitness prerequisites: A very high level of physical fitness, stamina and mental fortitude is required.  You must already be a strong climber with solid technical mountaineering skills. A Guided Ascent is not suitable for beginners as the peaks are technically demanding and require a very high level of fitness and experience.

Previous experience: Minimum requirement – completion of our Advanced Mountaineering CourseAscent Preparation Program or equivalent mountaineering experience.

Maximum number of participants: Up to two participants per guide (depending on the summit/summit route to be attempted).

Bad weather itinerary: In the event of bad weather (or any other unforeseen events that require a change of course location), additional costs (eg. transport) may be incurred. Any alteration to the schedule and/or costs will be discussed with participants before being finalised.

Program Details:  Our Guided Ascents are run on demand from October to April, please refer to the course pages for pricing. Or contact us if you would like more information or to book a course.

Course prices: prices in NZD for a 6 day course (note: course duration can be flexible ie. more or less days)

  • $2500 for 2pp
  • $4800 for 1pp

Included In Fee

  • All Guides fees & expenses
  • Return transport to course location from Lake Tekapo
  • Hut fees (bed)
  • Hire of technical gear (harness, crampons, helmet  and ice axe)
  • Breakfast, lunch, dinner & snacks

Not Included In Fee:

  • Accommodation/flights before & after course
  • Personal clothing/equipment (we can give you a list of recommended items to bring)
  • Mountaineering boots (bring your own or we will assist you to buy a pair wholesale through our company at the start of the course)
  • Helicopter access

Accommodation: During the course we will be staying at the Plateau or Kelman hut. Your fee covers overnight stay in bunk style dormitory. Please contact us for further information or to make a booking.