Accommodation for Tongariro Crossing at The Clyde Hotel
Ohakune “where adventure begins” is a year round tourist destination.
Ohakune is the gateway to the majesty of Tongariro National Park and Wanganui National Park, and it’s the carrot capitol of the world.
The Ruapehu snow print boasts NZ’s largest ski area and is base to many national walks, including the Tongariro Crossing (one of best one day walks in the world).
Links to attractions in the Ohakune area:
Ski Shops: TCB Ski and Board, Ski Shed, Snow Centre, Mt Ruapehu
Outdoor Activities: Bush Walks, Vertigo Climbing, Demsey Buses, Gravity Canyon
Paintball: Ski Shed OR Erua Lodge
Golf Course: Waimarino Golf Club OR Waiouru Golf
Old Coach Road: Horse Trekking
Bike Rentals: Mountain Bike Station, Ohakune Bike and Hike, Tcb Ski and Board
Check out these websites for more tourist activities in the Ohakune area: Ohakune.info, Ohakune Mardigras NZ, Visit Ohakune, NZ.com, Events.nz.com, NZ Hot Pools, iTravel NZ
Download the new Ohakune App through iTunes – it gives a virtual tour through the town and what’s on.
The Tongariro Crossing really is one of the 10 best day walks in the world. Providing you have well above average fitness and strong legs you should do the walk comfortably.
How far is it? How much time should I allow?
The walk is a little over 19.4kms and you should allow about 6.5 -8 hours. You will climb to 1886 meters. All most all the other walkers will be moving from west to east ie. in the same direction. Doing the track from east to west involves more climbing. Also, the shuttles drop you on the western side (Mangatepopo Road parking area) and pick up from the eastern side (Ketetahi).
Is it child friendly?
No, not really. Its very steep uphill in places and very steep downhill. A lot of the surface is boardwalk, but a significant portion is slippery loose gravel. Good balance and leg strength are required.
Are there toilets?
Yes, in two places, but there will be long queues. The first toilets are at about 4.4 kms from the Mangatepopo Road parking area. There are also toilets at the Ketetahi shelter.
What will I see?
You will see amazing and varied landscapes. The walk starts with a gentle incline through alpine meadow with flowers and streams. You’ll then climb up a series of staircases to a flat moon scape (the south crater of Tongariro). Up an exposed, gravel ridge track to a saddle immediately north of Ngauruhoe and over looking the Red Crater. A steep decent starts here. You pass the brilliant Emerald Lakes, the Blue Lake and then start a long 11km decline of switch backs offering extraordinary views north to Taurangi and Lake Taupo and left and right to eruptions sites and active fumeroles. Official and detailed track description.
After your fitness, the weather should be your main consideration. High winds, and or rain, will make the day difficult and unpleasant. Low cloud will obscure amazing views. So go to Ohakune or National Park with a few days to spare so you can choose the best day out of 3 or 4.
Don’t put yourself and others at risk by not taking the right gear.
sturdy shoes (running shoes will get gravel in them)
a couple of litres of water per person, sustaining food, and emergency food
top and bottom wet weather gear. Propylene under garments
suncream, first aid, cell phone, torch
If you are walking in the winter, specialise equipment will be required
Get the iPhone and Android “Pocket Ranger” app.