Saturday 21st September 2019 – Taking advantage of the clear weather, went down with a friend (to meet up with another friend) to undertake Tongariro Alpine Crossing across a snow blanket with Adrift Tongariro Guided tours. Believe it or not, despite decades of hiking, this is actually the first time that I walked Tongariro Crossing.
Journey was about 8 and half hours in total, including lots of stops and a side track up the red crater peak. Being a Guided Journey with a large group of 46 which the guides were responsible for, the pace was intentionally a lot slower, particularly up the snow slopes, where crampons were needed. Probably just as well, didn’t sleep the night prior and my physical stamina that day was at a definite lull and which helped make things easy going as a result.
Basic and clear instructions was provided with use of the Ice Axe (e.g how to arrest any falls) along with instruction on putting on the Crampons.
Thanks to Phil (who was our assigned guide) and the rest of the other Adrift NZ Guides include Casey, Zhi, Wang, and many other guides (who I’ve unfortunately forgotten the names of)
The “Cabin” style accommodation we stayed in at National Park, while very clean, made for woeful sleep quality and I feel was a lot more uncomfortable than any DoC Hut I’ve slept at due to flimsy metal bunk and worn mattresses, not to mentioned cramped for 3 people for the price paid. If staying at Pukenui lodge, may be avoid the standard (non Ensuite rooms) bunk rooms. If wanting your own private single occupancy room, suggest looking elsewhere.