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 Born on the North Island of New Zealand Mike first started climbing in 1978, at age 16.  He has been guiding for nearly 30 years and during his guiding career has climbed many of the world’s highest mountains including 9 ascents of Everest including back to back ascents of Everest and Lhotse. He shares the record for the greatest number of Everest ascents for a New Zealander with two others.

He has also managed to fit in 14 seasons mountain and ski guiding in the Southern Alps of New Zealand, 18 seasons in Antarctica as a Field Leader / Guide to the USA  and NZ Antarctic Programs, SAR Leader for the Joint Antarctic Search and Rescue team, has worked as a Professional Ski Patroller / Avalanche Forecaster and is a qualified Physiotherapist.



  • Back to back, 2013

Gasherbrum 2

  • Solo climb without oxygen, 2006

Ama Dablam

  • Solo climb, 2003

Seven Summits

  • After climbing Carstensz Pyramid not once but twice in a row in 2013. Mike has now completed the Seven Summits having climbed each one at least two times.

Mt Hicks, NZ

  • Climbed the Yankee/Kiwi Couloir on the South Face, 1989

Mt Douglas, NZ

  •  The South Face, 1985, 1987

Mt Cook, NZ

  • New route named Sweet Dreams, 1985
  • The Caroline Face, 1987

Mt Sabre, NZ

  • ‘Black Doris’ on the NE Face, 1986

Mt Walter, NZ

  • Winter climbs, East Face, 1984, 1986

Mt Earnslaw, NZ

  • The first winter ascent of the South Face of the West Peak via a new route, 1982

Q & A

 What do you love most about climbing?

  • I love the solace and beauty of wilderness and am inherently drawn to the challenges of climbing high rugged peaks. I thrive on sustained endurance exercise, the technical challenges of climbing and the deeper levels of connection that get forged with climbing partners.  

...about guiding?

  • I love to help people achieve their goals and have enjoyable experiences in what is often an intimidating and frightening environment for them. Key to this, I like to take the time to educate folks on both technical aspects and environmental appreciation. Through guiding, I have met amazing people and formed lasting friendships. Guiding has enabled me to travel and work in many different countries, having fascinating cultural experiences.

Most memorable climbing experiences?

  • Transalpine trip in Mt Aspiring National Park
    One of my most memorable experiences was a wilderness transalpine trip in Mt Aspiring National Park where Geof Spearpoint and I traversed the Olivine Ice Plateau and Red Mountain to Big Bay in four fantastic days; this included climbing an inconsequential but lovely peak called Little Ark.
  • Mt Cook/Aoraki
    During several occasions in my youth, I was benighted on routes and had forced bivouacs. On one such occasion, after climbing the Caroline Face of Mt Cook with Maryanne Water and descending in falling snow, low visibility and eventually darkness, I awoke to find the roof of Empress Hut protruding above deep snow less than 100m away from where we had made our emergency snow shelter.

    Of the many ascents I did of Mt Cook/Aoraki, a mountain I was obsessed with in my 20’s, the rock steps of the North Ridge rate high for a fantastic and exhilarating climbing.
  • Gasherbrum II & Ama Dablam
    Standing alone on both the summits of Gasherbrum II and Ama Dablam on days where no other climbers were present.
  • Mt Jenkins
    The first ascent of Mt Jenkins on Wiencke Island, Antarctic Peninsula from a yacht. This wonderful trip and adventurous climb has many special memories for me: a stunning and amazing landscape; venturing into terrain where nobody had climbed before; the intimidation of a major glacier carving ice into the ocean adjacent to where we were endeavouring to land by zodiac in a sea state of high swell; the colours of a brilliant sunrise on ice burgs in the ocean directly below our climbing position; 12 pitches of steep and exhilarating snow and ice climbing; and a spectacularly steep summit ridge in one of planet earth's most stunning environments.

Outside of climbing how do you like to spend your time?

  • I have taken up surfing (a beginner who has a lot of fun) and am venturing into the world of Kite Surfing. My lifestyle includes Yoga, Vipassanā meditation and an enduring interest in personal transformation through techniques such as Voice Dialogue.


Seven Summits

Everest (8850m)

  • Summits - 2002, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2016, 2017
  • Lead Guide - 2005, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2016, 2017
  • Guide – 2002, 2004, 2013

Carstensz Pyramid (4884m)

  • Back to back summits as lead guide which completed Mike’s Seven Summits (2013)
  • Lead Guide - Mar and Nov 2016 (Summiting twice on the November expedition)

Kilimanjaro (5895m)

  • Lead Guide on 4 successful expeditions  (2003 – 2012)

Mt Elbrus (5633m)

  • Lead Guide on 14 successful expeditions (2004-2017)

Denali/Mt McKinley (6194m)

  • 12 expeditions, 11 summits
  • Lead Guide - 1988, 1994, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2009

Vinson Massif (4892m)

  • Lead Guide - 2000, 2001, 2007, 2008

Aconcagua (6962m)

  • Lead Guide - 1998, 2002

8000m Peaks

Everest (8850m)

  • Summits, 2002, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2016, 2017
  • Lead Guide, 2005, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2016, 2017
  • Guide, 2002, 2004, 2013

Lhotse (8516m)

  • Summitted, 2013

Gasherbrum 2 (8035m)

  • Lead Guide, 2 expeditions, 1 summit, 2003, 2006

Cho Oyu (8201m)

  • 8 expeditions, 6 summits, 2001 – 2016
  • Lead Guide, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016

Himalayan Climbs

Baruntse (7129m)

  • Lead Guide, 2008

Mera Peak (6476m)

  • Lead Guide, 2006, 2008

Island Peak (6189m)

  • Lead Guide, 1991, 2003, 2013

Lobuche (6119m)

  • Lead Guide, 1991


Mt Jenkins (1705m)

  • Guided first ascent, 2000  (Wiencke Island, Antarctic Peninsula)

Mt Sidley (4285m)

  • Guide, 2012  (Highest volcano in Antarctica)

Mont Blanc (4807m)

  • Guide, 2011

Matterhorn (4478m)


  • Guide, 2010

Mt Sanford (4949m)


  • Lead Guide, 2006  (Wrangell Mountains, Alaska)

Muztagh Ata (7546m)

  • Lead Guide 2 expeditions, 1 summit, 2000, 2001

Antarctic Peninsula

  • Guide, 2000 (6 week sailing/ mountaineering expedition aboard Pelagic, several first ascents)


  • Aoraki/Mt Cook - Over 20 ascents
  • Mt Aspiring - Multiple ascents
  • Numerous ascents of New Zealand mountains, 1985-2013


  •  Adventure Consultants' mountain guides are qualified IFMGA / UIAGM Mountain and Ski Guides   IFMGA Mountain & Ski Guide, 1990
  • Level 2 Avalanche and PHEC
  • NZMGA Guide,1986


The Vertical Limit, Hollywood Motion Picture

  • Mountain Safety Position, 1999. (Including Talent Safety, Avalanche Unit, Rigging Department and First Unit)

Adventure Consultants

  • Logistics and expedition planning, 2000-2007



  • Assessor

Otago Polytechnic, NZ

  • Directed 7 day Avalanche Courses

United States Antarctic Program
(USAP) McMurdo Station

  • Field Safety Training Instructor in 1991/92, 1994/95, 2002/03 & 2004/05
  • Joint Antarctic Search and Rescue Team Leader / Lead Instructor 2002/03
  • Field Leader for geological and glaciological groups 1989-2007

Antarctica New Zealand

  • Review of Antarctic Field Training Program, 2005/06


"Leadership on the mountain was exemplary, Mike kept us focused on our task whether it was an acclimatisation hike or our summit bid, yet found a balance by encouraging us to take a minute and enjoy our surroundings. He was very patient with all our questions and always willing to provide guidance and his experience to help us. We appreciated Mike’s focus on safety in all aspects of our expedition. Mike’s logistical leadership and experience ensured that all aspects of the expedition ran smoothly."
"I can't say enough great things about Mike Roberts. Not only is Mike such an experienced mountaineer with endless multiple summits (highest and most difficult in the world) to his name, Mike is such a great leader, friendly, very humble, and such a great bloke. The perfect guide. Everyone on the team felt the same. It was a pleasure and an honour to climb with Mike. Looking forward to climbing with him again in the future."
"We were very happy travelling with Adventure Consultants.  Mike did a great job during the expedition. He is a nice guy and a fantastic guide who takes the right decisions if necessary and who is a very good team leader."
"Mike was an excellent leader. He was very concerned about our welfare and did everything he could to help us on the mountain." Kai Zinn, Cho Oyu 2016

Follow Mike...

In the News...

Everest 2012: A Summiter’s Perspective

 © Peter Cammel The Climber, NZ's Climbing Magazine
Everest is irresistible to the media—and this year’s pre-monsoon season attracted particular attention. Photos of long, snaking lines of up to 150+ climbers were published on news websites and blogs, pre-empting comments from many corners on overcrowding issues and the alleged ‘circus’ that climbing Everest has become...

Read more