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Climb Mount Aspiring

Queenstown Mountain Guides Mount Aspiring climb & guided ascent is a 5 day mountaineering expedition. Our Mount Aspiring climb is based from Colin Todd Hut on the Bonar glacier at 1800m. 

Mount Aspiring is the highest mountain outside of the Mt Cook national park at 3033m and is a well known and classic New Zealand mountain. Mt Aspiring is often referred to as the "Matterhorn" of New Zealand's Southern Alps.

The Mt Aspiring climb & guided ascent by the North West ridge can be attempted by climbers with basic mountaineering experience and is suitable for climbing partners to climb with a guide at a 2:1 ratio.

The classic climb of the SW of Mt Aspiring ridge is steeper and more challenging and is suitable for more experienced climbers and is only guided at a 1:1 client guide ratio.

A good level of fitness and previous mountaineering experience  equivalent to our 3 day Queenstown Mountaineering Course or New Zealand Mountaineering Course is required for climbing Mt Aspiring. The typical summit day is between 10 and 12 hours long.  After the climb a 1 ½ day walk out down through the Matukituki valley to the road end is required. It is also possible to fly out by helicopter.

Queenstown Mountain Guides are a local guiding company. Our guides have years of experience working on Mt Aspiring and an impressive track record of safety and successful ascents. Please contact us for more information on climbing Mt Aspiring with us.

Other related trips

Climb Mt Cook

Climb Mitre Peak

Sample Itinerary

Day 1

8.30am Meet at your accommodation for introductions & gear check. Drive to the Matukituki valley and the Mt Aspiring helicopter flight staging area. We will arrive at the Mt Aspiring helicopter staging area and prepare our equipment for the flight into the mountains.

Before the flight we will go through the aircraft safety briefing. Arrive at Bevan Col. It is a 1 ½ hour walk across the Bonar Glacier to get to Colin Todd Hut where we will be based for the Mt Aspiring climb. Bevan Col offers great views of Mt Aspiring’s North West and South West ridge routes as well as incredible views of the Mt Aspiring National Park.

Days 2 - 4 

Summit days. Normally we depart the hut at 4.00am under the cover of darkness. The goal is to reach the summit by 9.00am. A typical summit day on Mt Aspiring is 10-12 hours long.

Days 4 - 5

Walk or egress flight out of the mountains. It is normally a 1.5 day walk from the high alpine area to the road end where we will drive back to Wanaka or Queenstown. 


Map 2014

1 person

Map 2014

5 days



Map 2014

Flight in included


October - April

The Mt Aspiring climbing season is normally from October through until late April. As the summer season progresses the route options on the mountain change.

From October until December it is possible to climb the Ramp route on the North West ridge staying on snow and ice all the way to the summit.

After December, rock climbing is often required on the full North West ridge to reach the summit.

Experience Required

  • Previous mountaineering experience
  • Experience climbing with two tools on snow and ice
  • Belaying/rope skills
  • Rock climbing experience (for late season ascents)

Whats Included

The price of the trip includes

  • Guide fees
  • Aircraft access fees
  • Hut fees
  • Meals and snacks
  • Ground transport

The price of the trip excludes

  • Personal equipment & clothing
  • Technical equipment hire
  • Accommodation in Queenstown & Wanaka

More Information

detailed trip notesequipment listFAQ