Hike to Mount Aicken Summit

New Zealand Mount Aicken 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. 

 

Pack List

  • Mountain attire
  • Umbrella
  • Sturdy Shoes
  • GPS or Map and Compass 
  • PLB (Personal Locator Beacon)
  • 3 litres of water as there is nowhere to get water up here
  • Camera
Read More

Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

Share

Activities:

Hiking

Skill Level:

Advanced

Season:

Year Round

Trail Type:

Out-and-Back

Distance:

3 Miles

Elev. Gain:

3608.9 Feet

Rating:

Features:

Forest
River
Scenic
Waterfall

Are we missing something?

Suggest an edit

How to Get There

about 2 months ago

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.

about 2 months ago

Added by Ryan Mazure

Traveler, hiker and part time climber. A dreamer that acts on what I really want my life to look like. My passion is the outdoors and just going out and exploring what mother nature has given us, You never know what is around the corner until you go!

More Adventures Nearby

Day Hike to Harris Saddle (Routeburn Track)

New Zealand / Routeburn Shelter

The Routeburn Track is world famous, and with good reason.

Tobin Akehurst
3 Saves

Hike to Robert's Point (Franz Josef Glacier)

New Zealand / Franz Josef Glacier Trailhead

This trail is one of my favorite in New Zeanand. It wasn't so much 'built' as it was 'discovered'. The trail follows natural erosion and clean exposed flows of glacier carved granite walkways.

Tobin Akehurst
3 Saves

Hike to the Fox Glacier

New Zealand / Fox Glacier Carpark

From the carpark follow the well marked trail to the toe of the Fox Glacier. Do not stray from the trail as unstable ice and moraine can be very dangerous.

Tobin Akehurst
4 Saves