New Zealand Alpine Rock & Darran Mountains Climbing - Detailed Trip Notes

CONTENTS

Meeting at the start of your trip
Clothing & equipment
Accommodation during the trip
Aircraft access & egress
Climbing season
Daily trip logistics
Summary of inclusions & exclusions

 

Meeting at the start of your trip

Your guide will meet with you at 8.30am on the first day of the trip. We can meet with you at your accomodation or you are welcome to come to our office. The Queenstown Mountain Guides office is located at Unit 403, 875 Frankton Rd in Queenstown.  

 

Clothing & equipment

Climbing in the New Zealand mountains requires that you have high quality equipment and clothing due to the extremes of weather we experience. Please ensure you look carefully at our equipment checklist. At the start of the trip your guide will go through your equipment and make sure that you have everything that you need for the trip. Please organise to have your extra equipment stored at your accomodation for the duration of the trip.

It is important that you keep as close as possible to the equipment checklist. The focus is on ensuring that you have the equipment you need, but also on keeping your pack as light as possible. If your guide is meeting you at your accomodation for the start of the trip it would be helpful if you have all your equipment and clothing organised and laid out in a logical fashion so they can check that everyone has the right equipment and clothing for the trip.

 

Accomodation during the trip

On Darran mountains climbing trips we use Homer Hut as our base camp, this dormitory style hut is owned and operated by the New Zealand Alpine Club. This hut is set in an incredibly beautiful area in the Fiordland mountains. Facilities at the hut are basic, the rooms are dormitory style and there is a large kitchen and communal area. There are no showers, electricity, or phone reception at the hut. 

As part of the trip you may spend some nights in tents or in natural rock bivouac shelters so as to be closer to the start of the climb. For example when climbing the North Buttress of Sabre we stay at Phils Bivvy, a spectacular natural rock shelter in the Marian valley. This rock shelter is located under the North Buttress of Sabre and overlooks Lake Marian.

Accomodation in Queenstown & Wanaka is not included in the trip costs. Staying in Queenstown or Wanaka may happen if you are delayed entering the mountains or exit early because of the weather. Being based in Queenstown during poor weather in the high mountains will enable us to use the Remarkables mountain range as often this is sheltered from the worst of the Southern Alps weather.

Accomodation in Queenstown  before or after the trip is not included in trip costs. To organise accomodation before and after the course we recommend www.booking.com here you will find a wide range of accomodation depending on your preferred style and budget.

 

Aircraft access & egress

Aircraft access is generally not used when we climb in the Darran mountains. However there are some remote and spectacular climbing areas that can be accessed. Please let us know if you would like more information or to visit one of these areas.

 

Climbing season

The Darran Mountains climbing season is from January through until the end of March. By January the alpine rock is now free from snow, this also allows us to take advantage of the more settled summer weather in the Fiordland area.

 

Daily trip logistics

Every day in the mountains is different with changing weather and conditions. When you book your trip with Queenstown Mountain Guides we will discuss your goals for the trip and the general plan. When you meet with your guide on the first morning of your trip your guide will discuss with you the weather forecast and current conditions and make a final plan for the trip.

On each day of the trip your guide will make a plan based on the best use of time considering the current conditions. It is best to be flexible so we can ensure that you will make the most of your time with us.

 

Summary of inclusions & exclusions

The price of the trip includes

  • Guide fees
  • Meals and snacks
  • Ground transport
  • Group equipment
  • Department of Conservation concession fees

The price of the trip excludes

  • Personal equipment & clothing
  • Technical equipment hire
  • Helicopter access fees if required
  • Accomodation in Queenstown & Wanaka