Tongariro Alpine Crossing Planning & What To Bring

Mt Ruapehu weather conditions and those in the Tongariro National Park, and especially on the Tongariro Alpine Crossing is extremely unpredictable. The weather can change from glorious sunshine to miserable cold in a few minutes so be equipped and prepared for extreme weather change.

Also be prepared for the unfortunate event of changing your plans and turning back if the weather takes a bad turn, visibility is poor and in strong winds.

It is recommended that you organize a transport to the beginning of the track with one of the many operator providers so that they know when to expect you off the mountain. They are pockets of cell phone and even internet coverage so bring your mobile in case of emergencies.

If you are intending to spend the night, please fill in an intention form at the Department of Conservation Visitor Centre and remember to let them know when you have completed your trip.

Tongariro Alpine Crossing - What to Bring

  • Sufficient high energy food and plenty of fluid, especially on hot days.
  • Waterproof jacket / raincoat and over trousers
  •  Strong sturdy boots (You will be trekking on uneven volcanic terrain)
  • Warm woolen, fleece or polypropylene clothing
  • Gloves and hat
  • Sunblock and sunglasses
  • Personal first aid kit
  • Map and compass
  • Specialised mountaineering equipment and guide is needed in winter 

Tongariro Alpine Crossing in Winter

  •  Ice axe and crampons (and know how to use them)
  • Snow gaiters

Consider also:

  • A compass and map (in poor visibility)
  • Avalanche probe/snow shovel in winter
  • Avalanche transceiver

Please check at the visitor centre for up-to-date information on weather, Tongariro track conditions and avalanche forecast.



Tongariro Alpine Crossing Smartphone App. Project Tongariro has launched New Zealand’s first interactive smartphone application for a National Park. Called the Pocket Ranger, this free to download app is designed to offer an interactive and multi-media experience that provides interpretation, maps and images of the unique natural features of the Tongariro Alpine Crossing walk while at the same time conveys important safety messages.

Click for more information and to download the Pocket Ranger App.

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