Do sherpas (or similar) exist in New Zealand?

I am planning to do the Milford and / or Routeburn track in Nov or Dec 2014 with hubby and my 2 boys that don't stop eating (13 and 11 yrs old). Thankfully, tents, stoves and mattress are not required as the boys aren't strong enough to carry very much. Does anyone know of a tramping group or commercial enterprise that will help carry your packs, do food drop-offs or assist with bearing the load???? Docs have not been able to help. Thanks
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11 and 13 is the same age as Scouts in NZ. When I was a scout leader we did several tramps and no one carried the scouts gear except for those same scouts. They even cooked for us leaders.
My sister and I took her 9 year old sons on the Abel Tasman and then on the Heaphy 2 years later. She and her big sister did the Doubtful/Dusky Sound trip in 1958 with AH Reed among others. She was 6 and Diana was 7 but I don't think they carried much gear...They loved it and were keen trampers after that.
Hi @leoandianr, your original post does not have any information about what tramping experience you, your husband or your kids have had previously. Based on my experiences growing up and with my two kids, a girl (11) and a boy (8), from the age of 8-9 kids are quite capable of carrying their own sleeping bag, clothes, raincoat, some snacks, and a few other odds and ends like a book, headlamp, bowl, spoon etc. My daughter usually carries the gas cooker, fuel, billy and a day’s food for a total pack weight incl. 750ml water of no more than 8-10kg. I have found kids generally are pretty keen to help out as part of the group by carrying a pack. Most kids also enjoy cooking and firewood collecting/chopping as they get to “play” with “dangerous” stuff like fire and knives. Going on 1 or 2 overnight trips before doing the Milford or Routeburn will allow you to sort out what works for you as a family and what doesn't. If you some more specific advice about gear and food etc. just let us know.
I think it's a given that most people around here will suggest carrying your own stuff (because that's what we normally do ourselves), but I don't think it's unreasonable to expect that some people simply won't want that regardless. It's not exactly rare. That's how these businesses exist, after all. Having someone carry packs also ensures a certain amount of security for anyone who's really uncertain about their abilities, without every having been in that situation before, plus it beats not getting out to see a place at all. And afterwards, maybe the second time or the third time after seeing how these places work and other people are doing stuff, it might inspire someone to try taking that extra step.
its your choice whether you cary your gear or not, but no harm pointing out that pre teens can carry their own gear with a bit of fitness and practice...
An idea that just occurred to me is to place a job ad with Student Job Search/University tramping clubs looking for someone fit and keen to carry a heavy load. Most students would have finished exams/study by the start of November and if they haven't got work lined up would jump at the chance to earn some cash.
Its not a bad idea having someone carry your gear, but it will probably cost you an arm and a leg. FYI: Nepalese porters get paid about 500 rupees a day (about US $10), I would expect to pay several hundred dollars to get someone to carry my pack on the Routeburn/Milford tracks. Pack light, eat light and get the kids to carry their own gear is the easiest answer.

This thread branched to "Portering gear in New Zealand" on . Explore the branch (14 messages).

I'll do it for 2 hundy (if you fly me down there)
1 deleted post from leoandianr
Hubby and I hiked extensively throughout Oz (pre-kids) but now would simply prefer to carry a lighter load whilst enjoying the great outdoors. I estimate we need 2 reliable, strong people to carry approx 20kg of gear (mostly food), to maximise our enjoyment of this beautiful area. Getting paid to do something you love is what we all aspire to... I think it's a great business opportunity. Thanks for the advice re Otago Rotary youth group, and I will consider advertising on the Student Job search website. Anyone keen???
Hi @leoandianr. You'll probably be fine below the radar, but if you're paying someone for this type of thing then just be aware of the possibility that DOC might see it as a commercial activity for which a concession is required, as is being discussed in the branched thread above.
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Forum Beginners and newbies
Started by leoandianr
On 6 May 2014
Replies 54
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