family tramping/gear advice

  • Hi fellow trampers, We are planning a family vacation to New Zealand over the 2017 Christmas holidays. We have 3 boys (will be 10 years old) and would like to 2 or more multi-day tramping trips with them. Our first picks are Abel Tasman and Routeburn. I think Abel Tasman should be doable for the kids, but what are your thoughts about Routeburn? We would take it slow - camp the first night at Routeburn Flats, stay the second night at the Routeburn Falls hut, 3rd night at Lake Mackenzie and then a 4th night at Lake Howden. We have read the advice that the entire Routeburn walk is not suitable for children under 10, so perhaps this would be too much? If so, do any of you have an alternative suggestion? Is it possible to do part of the Routeburn walk and still see most of the spectacular scenery? Or, would another walk be more suitable? Also, regarding gear: any recommendations on an ultralight tent that can accommodate 5? Our boys are not very big, so a 4 person would likely be OK. Thank-you for any advice.
  • I've seen kids a lot younger then 10 on the Routeburn before (youngest would have been about 5 and he walked the whole way with dad!), 10yo's should be fine. I noticed you're staying at each hut/campsite. While that's fine if that's what you want to do, most people just stay at Flats OR Falls hut, then Mackenzie OR Howden hut, walking the track in 3 days. Flats and Falls hut are only 1 hour apart (maybe 2 hours with kids), while Mackenzie and Howden are just 2-4 hours apart. If you want to stay at all 4 huts you will have a LOT of free time to get to the next one 🙂
  • My 9 year old recently walked to Harris saddle and back in a day from the Glenorchy side, with a full pack on, in claggy weather with occasional downpours. It's a pretty easy well graded walk.
    This post has been edited by the author on 18 April 2017 at 08:46.
  • 1.9 kg for a 4 man tent.
  • Thank-you all for the great advice. I'm sure I will be posting again soon with more newbie questions.
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Forum Beginners and newbies
Started by 3Smith3
On 18 April 2017
Replies 4
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