Fanthams Peak, Egmont National Park
- Egmont National Park is on the western coast of New Zealand's North Island. The nearest towns are New Plymouth, Inglewood, Stratford and Opunake. Dawson Falls sits at the top end of Mania Road 14km from Kaponga. The drive to the roadend is through scenic native forest. Kaponga is an easy drive west of Stratford and Eltham. Egmont National Park is located on the southeastern slopes of Mt Taranaki.
Egmont National Park cover 33,534 hectares. Here the volcano Taranaki (or Mt Egmont as it is also known) rules supreme standing tall above the surrounding landscape. Beside it are two volcanoes of an earlier era: Kaitake and Pouakai.
In good weather it is a challenging climb for the fit and well prepared. For those wanting a more relaxing experience there are beautiful walks through verdant forest to waterfalls, wetlands and excellent viewpoints. Standing as it does in isolation from other mountains it is one of the best parks from which to get an elevated view of another New Zealand – the rural heartland.
It was established as a national park in 1900, the second in New Zealand after its not too distant neighbour, Tongariro.
Take the Fantham’s Peak Track from above the Dawson Falls Visitor Centre. Follow the track uphill, past the Hooker Shelter to the Kāpuni Lodge junction. From here, the track ascends steeply up a staircase to meet the High Level Around the Mountain Circuit. From here, the route is marked with snow poles zigzagging up steep scoria slopes to the top of Fantham’s Peak and Syme Hut. Return to Dawson Falls Road end by the same route. The upper part of this track is very exposed and not recommended for winter use unless trampers are experienced and equipped with ice axe and crampons.
Dawson Falls is a stunning waterfall 10 minutes from the Dawson Falls Visitor Centre and well worth visiting.·
Challenging day or multi-day tramping/hiking·
Track is mostly unformed with steep, rough or muddy sections·
Suitable for people with good fitness. Moderate to high level backcountry skills and experience, including navigation and survival skills required·
Track has markers, poles or rock cairns. Expect unbridged stream and river crossings ·
Tramping/hiking boots required
Fanthams Peak is at 1966 metres.
- 7.0 km
- 5.0 hours
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