Home / Trips / Canterbury

Mt Wakefield, Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park

Climbing Wakefield Ridge with Tasman Glacier Lake below. Photo: Peter Laurenson
Distance
5.87km to summit
Total Ascent
1478m
Time
9-12hr return
Grade
Moderate/Difficult
Access
From Hooker Corner on Tasmand Valley Road
Map
BX15
GPX File
Mt Wakefield, AorakiMt Cook National Park (gpx, yo 9 KB)
Your device does not support GPX files. Please try a different device.

If you’re willing to endure a short but rugged scramble from the valley floor to the tree line than what’s required on the nearby Mueller Hut route, then there’s another option, but without the crowds.

The route up Wakefield Ridge starts at Hooker Corner. A cairn signals where the rough trail heads directly upwards for about 200m until the bushline is reached and where the route becomes more obvious. This is alpine country and a winter trip requires crampons and an axe. Depending on conditions you may also need to use a rope further up. Awareness of avalanche risk is essential as you traverse snow slopes further up the ridge towards Mt Wakefield, 2058m.

Wakefield Ridge sits between the Hooker and Tasman glaciers, and allows expansive views of both valleys and the surrounding peaks. This location gives an even greater sense of being in the heart of the landscape than at Mueller Hut.

It’s also satisfying to reach the summit of Mt Wakefield – though Aoraki leaves no doubt from this vantage point as to which peak reigns supreme.

Support Wilderness

Since 1991, Wilderness has had one simple goal: to help Kiwis ‘See more, do more, live more’ of New Zealand.

If you value our mission, please consider subscribing. As a loyal supporter, you’ll receive these benefits:

  • New Zealand’s best outdoor journalism We’ve won multiple awards for our journalism and magazine production.
  • NZ’s best trips. Browse more than 610 trips with downloadable maps and route notes.
  • Trustworthy gear reviews. Each month we review gear we’ve been bashing and thrashing for months so you can determine if its worth your money.
  • Member benefits. Our WildCard provides discounts at more than 20 partners throughout New Zealand.
  • Your support goes a long way. Your subscription will help us fund NZ’s best outdoor journalists and writers and ensure Wilderness will be there to inspire the next generation of outdoor Kiwis.

A subscription costs as little as $7.00/month for instant access to all articles, trips, gear reviews and gear guides.

View all our subscription options and join the club.

Already a subscriber? Login Now.