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Safety Tips for hiking in New Zealand

Safety Tips for Hiking in New Zealand

When hiking (at any time of the year) it is important to remember that New Zealand conditions can become treacherous, so you need to be well-prepared for any change of weather or mishap!

A great resource is this site which has a wide range of resources as well as an intentions form which you should complete before heading itno the mountains.

ALWAYS check the track and weather conditions at your local Department of Conservation (DOC) centre before beginning, and let others know of your intended departure and return times.

Some basics to remember on any New Zealand walk, hike or tramp are:

  • Visit the Department of Conservation field centre nearest to the track to ascertain current track and weather conditions before you depart. Weather in New Zealand changes rapidly, so be aware of the forecast and watch the weather as you walk.
  • Carry water and drink regularly. Take spare, high energy food; you may be in longer than you expect.
  • Take layers of warm clothing as well as windproof and waterproof clothing. If you stop walking, put on extra clothing.
  • Take survival bags or a tent fly for emergency shelter.
 Walking Gear Check List:
  • Pack with waterproof liner
  • Waterproof raincoat
  • Sleeping bag
  • Overtrousers
  • Clothing – one set to walk in, and a dry set to change into.
  • Extra shirt or jersey
  • Boots
  • Mittens or gloves
  • Socks (wool/polypropylene) two pair
  • Plate and mug
  • Shorts – nylon/cotton
  • Eating utensils
  • T shirt/singlet – wool/polypropylene
  • Drink bottle
  • Shirt – wool/polypropylene
  • Spare boot laces
  • Longjohns or trousers – wool/polypropylene
  • Plastic bags and ties
  • Jersey or jacket – wool/polypropylene
  • Toilet gear – soap, toothpaste, toilet paper, small towel
  • Woollen hat or balaclava, sun hat
  • Survival kit – including whistle, lighter, paper, pencil

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