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Mt Taranaki/Egmont from North Egmont, Egmont National Park

Climbing Mt Taranaki along the Lizard route offers a great view of the Pouakai Range. Photo: Mark Watson
5.9k to summit
To Tahurangi Lodge, 2hr; Lodge to summit return, 6hr
From North Egmont Visitor Centre on Egmont Road
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MT Taranaki from North Egmont (gpx, yo 15 KB)
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Most backcountry enthusiasts understand that Mt Egmont/Taranaki is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. While extremely accessible and straightforward to climb, being so near the coast and being such an isolated and elevated landmass means weather conditions can change quickly.

In winter, regardless of which route you take to the summit, climbing Taranaki demands at least the use of crampons and an axe.

One option to break the climb into an overnight trip, thereby reducing risk and increasing enjoyment, is to stay a night at Tahurangi Lodge, the Taranaki Alpine Club mountain abode (advance booking required).

Climbing Taranaki, even up the standard Lizard route above Tahurangi Lodge, is a great day out in the mountains. As you near the summit, the macabre rime ice becomes ever more present until, up in and around the summit crater, it resembles exquisite natural works of art.

Back at the lodge, the facilities are as comprehensive as they are expansive and the sunset view from the deck to the Taranaki coast is something to behold. At dawn, you can enjoy a light show to the east as Mts Ruapehu, Tongariro, Ngauruhoe and the countless ridges between them and Mt Taranaki are silhouetted by the rising sun.

This trip can also be undertaken as a day trip.

A climb of Mt Taranaki/Egmont should only be attempted in fine weather. Expect abrupt weather changes – the mountain will always be there, turn back and try another day if conditions deteriorate.