Hike to Mount Aicken Summit

3 miles 3608.9 ft gain  - Out-and-Back Trail

Added by Ryan Mazure

Climb one of the Southern Alps' most rarely hiked routes. 

The trail starts at the carpark to the famous Devils Punchbowl Falls and heads up towards the falls themselves before taking a turn up and to the right. 

You'll pass through the forest before the trees lower in height and you'll have amazing views across to the south over to Mount Rolleston and Avalanche Peak. The tree line will take around 2 hours to get to and after that you're into the real stuff.

If you aren't experienced then now is the time to turn back. The alpine area is very open and you will need to know how to navigate in poor visibility or have a GPS handy. The weather can change quickly and this would probably be one of the easiest hikes to get lost on due to the big area that leads to the summit.

You will continue to ascend following the big orange snow poles sticking into the ground. After around 30 minutes you will join a ridge line that takes you to the top. The rock is very loose so be careful and watch your steps as you proceed along this spot. Once at the summit you'll have great views and you can even continue along the ridge line to Blimit if you so wish.

On the way back you will see the poles and orange rock markings quite easily. The hardest one to find is the entry to the bush line so be sure to remember the exact location where you exited from. 

Mount Aicken is a fine day out and can be don in 4-5 hours. The views are superb and you're just about guaranteed to have the whole peak to yourself. 

 

Read More

Tags

Hiking
Forest
River
Scenic
Waterfall

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

Beautiful and challenging

Definitively a great alternative for the Avalanche Peak, which can become quite crowded on a nice day. I got the tip from the DOC center at Arthur's Pass, it's best to check in there before taking the hike, just to be up to date with the weather and track warnings.

Nearby Adventures

  • Hike the Avalanche Peak - Crow River Valley Traverse

    The beginning starts with the popular day hike climb up Avalanche Peak in Arthur’s Pass, NZ. You can view that route on the Outbound here. Scott’s Track up is a bit longer but less steep and with better views so I’d recommend taking that up. Shoul...

    2.3 miles -2624.7 ft gain

  • Hike the Temple Basin Ski Field

    Arthur's Pass National Park is an extraordinary area of New Zealand's South Island, nearly untouched, with accessible trails into the mountain pass, which is part of New Zealand's "Southern Alps". This trail leads into the free ski camp, a basin t...

    4.3 miles 3300 ft gain

  • Hike to Devils Punchbowl Falls, Arthur's Pass

    An awesome 1 hr return walk in natural New Zealand bush. At the apex of the track is the fantastic Devils Punchbowl Falls with water constantly plummeting 131 metres off of the edge of the hill face above which can be seen from the main road throu...

    1.2 miles 492.1 ft gain

  • Hike up Avalanche Peak

    There are actually two trails leading up to the summit: the Avalanche Peak Track and Scott's Track. The former begins at the Arthur's Pass Visitor Centre while the latter begins down the main road, across from the Devil's Punchbowl Falls (less tha...

    6.2 miles 3444.9 ft gain