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Ice Climbing NZ: guide and location recommendation
3:43:43 PM
Hi there,

I'm looking into an ice climbing and ski (downhill on piste) holiday to NZ for about 2 weeks in Aug/Sept. I am looking to do some beginner ice climbing instruction and looking for recommendations on guiding schools/instructors etc.

I've only been to NZ in summer so am not sure of where might be the best place to base oneself for such a trip. Any thoughts on advantages of staying in Wanaka over Queenstown? (cost, crowds, access to ice climbing, ski slopes).

Thanks in advance for any suggestions.
4:02:23 PM
I'm no expert on the climbing, but as I understand it the two bases for instruction are Wanaka and Mt Cook.
Out of Wanaka you have to hike up towards Aspiring so a 'day trip' is out of the question, multi-day courses are usual unless you want to pay for a helicopter ride each way.
I've not heard of anything climbing-wise available out of Queenstown.

For skiing, my preference is Wanaka. You probably need a car. Cardrona and Treble Cone are both close by and you can easily make a day trip to Coronet Peak or the Regrettables, or even north to Mt Dobson for something less commercial. Cardona is imho one of the best mountains around, had some of my best days on skis there. There was also an X-C area up the Cardrona valley.

4:20:14 PM
Don't know how it fits with skiing, but I went on Ice climbing on Fox Glacier with a guide last year, went with Fox Guides
They were really good, and pretty fair price wise. Definitly worth a go... Can cater for larger trips if thats what you want.

4:20:39 PM
Wye Creek near Queenstown is one of NZ's premier ice climbing destinations - I believe that guiding companies operate out of Queenstown. Also there are ice climbing courses/day trips that can be done out of Fox/Franz Josef Glaciers on the West coast.
1:04:25 PM
thanks for the info guys!
1:56:45 PM
Lake Alta and Wye Creek are both popular locations for ice climbing courses, and are closest to Queenstown. The link below gives a good summary and idea of costs
3:50:40 PM
For ice climbing instruction, Adventure Consultants out of Queenstown will take you to Wye creek, which offers the most reliable winter ice in NZ. They have a portable shelter set up each year for accomodation.

Aspiring Guides do trips to their private hut on Black Peak, but conditions are not as consistent.

The best ice climbing though, when it's on, is in the Darrans.

Try and get over there in July or August if you can. September could be a bit late.

Check out these two guides:

4:09:43 PM
going in July for a four day course with aspiring guides out of Wanaka. Due to the currency exchange it cost about 1100 including all food and the helicopter.

There are 8 messages in this topic.


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