Mt Taranaki Summit (Summer)
Alpine ascent to summit of Mt Taranaki / Egmont.
A brute of a climb, but well worth the effort. We climbed in summer (winter is mountaineering material with ice axes, crampons, ropes etc a neccessity). Starting at North Egmont Visitor Centre, where intentions and the car can be left either ascend the road (4WD track) or The Razorback track. These both climb relatively quickly to Tahurangi Lodge; a private hut with emergency shelter, then into a short gully which is well marked. Then the steps start! Just when you've had enough of the pain of short sharp steps, they conveniently stop... To be replaced by loose scree and volcanic rock. As you ascend the mountain the angle of the climb increases, and you'll find that for every step foward, you take two back. Look to head to the spine of the ridge where the ground is slightly more stable. Eventually the scree gives way to steepish firm rock all the way to the crater. Don't ascend through the little gully unless you are carrying climbing equipment, there is a track to the left as you ascend that takes you over a short climb and into the crater area. To ascend to the summit, head south for approx 100-200 metres and ascend to your right to make it to the high point.
The view is incredible on a good day, but make sure that you're carrying at least a jacket that's water and wind proof, a warm jersey, lots of water (there's none up there) and plenty of food. Once you get past the lodge halfway up, there's no shelter, water or forgiveness from the mountain. ENJOY!