*Feb ’17 (update): After recently climbing to the summit of Mount Ngauruhoe, my advice is to go ahead with the whole micro-spikes ‘investment’. Multipurpose-asf – what more can you ask for?
*Nov ’16 (update): Just a bit of clarity around a couple of points, really, seeing as I have more life-experience under my belt re: ‘mountains’…
Firstly, the whole micro-spikes thing; I should note that we attempted this hike as relative beginners to alpine, technically-challenging environments, and I would hazard a guess that my beginners’ boots were not the best possible choice in terms of “sensible shoes”. I needed those spikes at the time; however, better boots-cum-alpine terrain ‘worksburgers’ would/should be the preferred option for Mounga Taranaki.
The scree here isn’t deep and soft like the stuff in Tongariro NP. Rather, it’s shallow and unforgiving, and IMO anything less than alpine-appropriate boots simply won’t “do you right” – especially if you’re having your first go at it. I’m now the proud owner of two different varieties: Salewa’s ‘Firetail Evo Mid GTX’, and The North Face’s ‘Ultra Gore-tex Surround Mid’, and I’d happily recommend either for sheer comfort and superb traction.
Time will totally tell, too; am planning to try these out on both Mount Ngauruhoe’s summit hike and the Pouakai Circuit over this coming Christmas-New Year’s.
Secondly (*finally): I heavily encourage you to do this hike with company; preferably someone you trust implicitly, but certainly somebody who can keep up with you, and with a keen sense of task completion.
No fuck-wits along for the proverbial ride, thanks. People die up here.
Make the most of this one – the sense of satisfaction once you’re at the top is immense.
I’ve been thinking a lot these last few days about why I started this blog.
In particular, I’ve found myself pondering exactly how my posts and messages contribute to the outside world.