Mt Aspiring Course & Ascent


Click on map to expand and navigate  





Meet your guide in Wanaka, check gear, drive to the road end and fly into the mountains in the early afternoon. A two hour walk across the Bonar Glacier takes us to Colin Todd Hut. Alternatively we may opt to camp in our tent camp on Bevan Col.



Your guide will take you through several skills sessions including basic snowcraft and cramponing skills, crevasse rescue, climbing alpine rock and ascending steep snow and ice.



Acclimatisation day, ascend a smaller peak such as Mt Bevan or Rolling Pin.



Summit day, start 3am, and finish as late as 7pm - OR contingency day.



Commence walk out, reaching French Ridge Hut or a bivvy site in the West Matukituki valley OR contingency day.



Complete walk out to road end, or fly out on back flight (weather permitting) to vehicle at the road end.

Due to the nature of the terrain and duration of the walk out we often utilise the option to fly out on a back flight at the completion of the climb. This is an additional cost and we can advise you of the price estimate at the time of booking.


Mt Aspiring Routes All of the routes take on average around 14-16 hours return. The walk into the Aspiring region is a beautiful but a long walk (12-16 hours) into Bevan Col or Colin Todd Hut where we base ourselves for the climb. The majority of our guests utilise helicopter access to Bevan Col on the edge of the Bonar Glacier in order to arrive fresh and take advantage of fine weather periods.


A steep snow route ascending from the Bonar Glacier which meets the North West Ridge halfway to the summit. Our most commonly ascended route and an all-time classic. We ascend this route until late December when access is cut off by late summer conditions.


A rock route which follows the ridge, deviously avoiding any really difficult climbing, but with plenty of exposure! We usually follow this route from mid-late December onwards.


This climb is a real gem for the more technically orientated mountaineers. A long fine arête gradually steepens to culminate in a technical gully section, then a two pitch ice face that takes you almost to the summit itself!

The Ramp or NW ridge routes are of similar technical grade and conditions can sometimes favour one of these routes over the other. Often the decision as to which route is most appropriate to climb can only be made once you are in the region. Climbers attempting the SW ridge will need prior ice climbing and mountaineering experience.


We guide Mt Aspiring all year as conditions allow, although our main climbing season is from November through to April.  In November and December we can expect more snow cover on the routes, and as temperatures warm up into the summer months of January and February, we traditionally experience more settled weather and mixed climbing conditions (snow, ice and rock). From March through April, late summer conditions exist which result in a combination of rock and ice routes. However, from May onwards cooling temperatures can bring snow falls to the Alps. Winter conditions are less predictable and the days are shorter, however for experienced climbers the winter solitude will be incredibly rewarding!

We do specialise in winter climbing and ice climbing through the months of July-September and whilst the days are shorter the mountains are virtually abandoned. Our guides are also experienced ski guides so enquire about combining ski touring with your ascent!


 Mt Aspiring-Tititea, 3033m, the 'Matterhorn of the South'  © Guy Cotter



  • Adventure Magazine - Mount Aspiring
    August 2016 - Dan Slater takes us on a climb of Mt Aspiring, with his story 
    featuring the stunning photos of AC guide and photographer Thomas Vialletet.
  • AG Outdoor - Aspiring to Greatness
    Oct 2014 - Brendon Hill describes his adventure up Mount Aspring with us "I felt powerful, strong, a conqueror. But also humble, insignificant and frightened..."