MT. ASPIRING GUIDED TREKS: Our treks commence in Wanaka with a drive to the Matukituki Valley. It is an easy 3 hour valley walk to our self contained private Lodge at Shovel Flat at the base of Mt. Aspiring, in the heart of the Park. A variety of guided activities are available from 3 to 8 days including valley walking, alpine treks and peak climbing on a group or individual basis including:
MT. ASPIRING TREK - 3 DAYS "A Taste of the Mountains"
THREE DAYS of guided trekking, visiting waterfalls, icefalls and viewing avalanches around the base of Mt. Aspiring.
Day 1: Stroll up the magnificent Matukituki Valley to our private Lodge with a Mtn Rec. Guide past superb waterfalls and towering peaks. The last hour of the three hour walk is in lush beech forest before emerging at Shovel Flat. A comfortable mountain hut atmosphere, bunkroom or tent accommodation, meals, hot shower, sleeping bags and liners are provided. Available for individual, group or exclusive use.
Day 2: Explore the dramatic upper valley and the spectacular 1500 metre Joffre Cliffs, 300 metre waterfalls, tumbling icefalls, glaciers and splendid varieties of alpine flowers. Alternatively, the day can be spent around Shovel Flat visiting huge ice caves and waterfalls near the hut. Day 3: A leisurely stroll drown the valley pausing to fish, swim or watch bird life in the forests and flats.
MT ASPIRING GUIDED TREK -- 4 DAY BREAKAWAY GLACIER:
A taste of the mountains" Mt. Aspiring Guided Trek - 4 day option: Includes a day trek to the Break-Away Glacier.
MT FRENCH/ MT ASPIRING VIEW CLIMB - 4 DAYS .
A Taste of Mountaineering. Join our four day climb to the expansive and wild Bonar Glacier with a professional Mountain Guide. Attempt Mt French and gain an inspiring view of Mt Aspiring after an overnight stay at French Ridge Hut. No previous mountaineering experience required, however participants should be fit.
July 2023 Update
Franz Josef/Fox Glacier Summit to Sea
Day 1: Wanaka to Fox village/Fly to Pioneer hut at 2,400m.
WEST OF THE DIVIDE - "Just a taste of mountaineering"
New in 2011
WEST COAST PHOTO/CLIMB EXPEDITION
3 Day SCOTT'S PEAK CLIMB & AORAKI/SEFTON PHOTO EXPEDITION
A special opportunity to visit a high and remote location requiring strong mtn. fitness, but no specific alpine skills.
MAIN DIVIDE TO THE SEA
Facilities at our Shovel flat ,"Avalanche" Lodge are for our exclusive client use and include: Dining and kitchen, bunkroom and hot shower.
Extract from Air NZ inflight magazine:
"ADVENTURE AND COMFORT FOR ASPIRING CLIMBERS" Avalanche Lodge is a name which could give some people insomnia. However, after a three hour walk up the West Matukituki Valley of Mount Aspiring National Park in the Southern Alps, most trekkers sleep well despite the rumble of snow avalanches.
The lodge is operated by Geoff & Beryl Wayatt as part of their mountaineering and guided-trekking business. It is nestled at the top of Shovel Flat, surrounded by a spectacular circle of snow peaks and hanging glaciers. The visually elusive Mount Aspiring crowns the breathtaking backdrop.
Since forming Mountain Recreation Ltd. in 1973, the Wayatts' clientele has changed considerably. "Our mountaineering school numbers have dwindled and we are now seeing more of the older, less altitude ambitious groups," says Geoff Wayatt.
"They want to spend time in wild locations without suffering too much or carrying heavy packs. They love energetic days but want the guarantee of a dry bunk and warm sleeping bag. I have also installed a hot shower as an alternative to a cold plunge in the Matukituki River."
Geoff Wayatt, a veteran mountain guide, was the first person to ski from the summit of Mount Cook in 1982. He climbed the precipitous East Face of Mt Cook in 1991, seven days before the summit fell off. He has confirmed his standing as one of New Zealand's most experienced mountain guides by amassing a total record of 88 ascents of Mt. Aspiring and 27 ascents of Aoraki/Mt. Cook from 1966 to Dec 2014. (2023 Update: 92 ascents)
"The Routeburn and Milford Tracks are almost at their full capacity, so people are looking for alternatives or more adventure." Most of the National Park is untracked and rarely seen, except by aircraft. For enthusiasts willing to walk a few hours a day, Mt. Aspiring Treks opens up a dramatic world of unparalleled mountain and forest vistas.
Useful Link: New Zealand Tourism
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