3-day Northern Circuit

The Northern Circuit is a 3-day tramp starting on Mt Ruapehu and encircles Mt Ngauruhoe. The circuit can be started from different points and walked in a clockwise or anti-clockwise direction. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing track, explosion craters, lava flows, Tama Lakes, Taranaki Falls and the Rangipo and Otarere deserts, are explored on this trek. This trek is a good way to enjoy the Tongariro National Park at a less energetic pace, whilst avoiding the crowds of the Tongariro Alpine Crossing. Mt Ngauruhoe had sporadic action during its last eruptions of 1973-1975. Since 1839, Ngauruhoe has erupted 61 times with breaks lasting no more than nine years (until 1975), and it is this regular activity that formed the perfect symmetry of its cone shape. 

3-day Northern Circuit - Guided


All trekking cooking and camping equipment and meals are provided for whilst on the trip. We also have a complete range of clothing and sleeping bags for hire should you be needing anything. 

We can also organise accommodation at National Park for the night prior and after the trip if you like. 

You can get to National Park by car bus or the train, we can help you with these arrangements also.

Doc fees are included in the trip cost. 

You will be required to carry minimal group equipment along with your own personal gear unless you request a porter which is an additional cost. Your backpack should not be carrying more than 10-12kg in weight.

Bookings must have a minimum of two people.

Below is the route I find my clients enjoy the most but is a template only and is changed continually depending on the weather conditions and what you want to see achieve and enjoy .

Day 1

Start at Whakapapa Village and head for the Tama Saddle and then onto the Waihohonu Hut (6 hours approx). En-route is the Tama Lakes and Taranaki Falls.

Day 2

Waihohonu Hut to the Oturere Hut. Approximately 3-4 hours on the eastern flanks of Tongariro. This is a relatively easy day and is a welcome rest after yesterday which some see as requiring an intermediate level of effort. We can rest and enjoy the leisurely pace or go exploring in the Otarere Desert where fossilised charcoaled remnants of the forest destroyed by the great eruption of Lake Taupo in 186 AD, can easily be found. 

Day 3

Otarere Hut up to the Tongariro Alpine Crossing and North to Ketetahi. This is a 6-7 hour day where we climb up to the Red Crater on the Tongariro Crossing and then descend to Mangatepopo, following the traditional Tongariro Alpine Crossing route. This leg covers the famous scenery spots of the Tongariro Alpine Crossing including Red Crater and the Emerald and Blue Lakes.

Cost

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