New Zealand is a land of spectacular and diverse mountains. North Island and South Island are both mountainous, and each has a landscape that is markedly distinct.
On North Island, a 300-mile system of mountain ranges extends from East Cape southwestwards to the island's coast. The peaks in this system average around 5,500 feet, but the landscape is dominated by four higher volcanoes, towering above the comparatively hilly terrain that surrounds them. The four prominent volcanoes are Ruapehu, Mount Egmont, Mount Ngauruhoe, and Mount Tongariro.
South Island, in contrast to North Island, has a clearly defined mountain backbone called the Southern Alps. These mountains have eighteen high summits, famous for their extensive glaciers. Steep glaciers coat the eastern and western slopes. Those on the west flow as distant as 20 miles, where ice nearly reaches the Tasman sea. Along the island's west coast, a wall of high peaks rises steeply, battered by extremely heavy winds and rain. Fierce, sudden storms often last for days, and northwest winds are generally so strong that climbs requiring bivouacs are rarely attempted. The best season for climbing runs from December through February. Many of South Island's highest peaks stand within national parks, where hotels and mountain huts are available.
South of South Island, the smaller Stewart Island is also mountainous, and is topped by Mount Anglem (3,215 ft.).
Peaks of New Zealand
Check out any of the following peaks for additional information:
- Anzac Peaks - 8307 ft./2532 m.
- Aoraki/Mount Cook - 12316 ft./3754 m.
- Ball's Pyramid - 1843 ft./562 m.
- Douglas Peak - 10128 ft./3087 m.
- Earnslaw - 9285 ft./2830 m.
- Glacier Peak - 9872 ft./3009 m.
- Hicks - 10443 ft./3183 m.
- Hochstetter Dome - 9262 ft./2823 m.
- Mitre Peak - 6562 ft./2000 m.
- Mount Annan - 9557 ft./2913 m.
- Mount Aspiring - 9931 ft./3027 m.
- Mount Aurora - 8737 ft./2663 m.
- Mount Barff - 7388 ft./2252 m.
- Mount Darwin - 9557 ft./2913 m.
- Mount Dixon - 9905 ft./3019 m.
- Mount Domett - 6350 ft./1935 m.
- Mount Eden - 643 ft./196 m.
- Mount Egmont (Taranaki) - 8261 ft./2518 m.
- Mount Green - 9311 ft./2838 m.
- Mount Haast - 10302 ft./3140 m.
- Mount Haidinger - 10065 ft./3068 m.
- Mount Humdinger - 9206 ft./2806 m.
- Mount kitchener - 6699 ft./2042 m.
- Mount Lendenfeld - 10508 ft./3203 m.
- Mount Luxmore - 4888 ft./1490 m.
- Mount Nathan - 9199 ft./2804 m.
- Mount Nazomi - 9557 ft./2913 m.
- Mount Ngauruhoe - 7516 ft./2291 m.
- Mount Ollivier - 6342 ft./1933 m.
- Mount Rolleston - 7464 ft./2275 m.
- Mount Tasman - 11476 ft./3498 m.
- Mount Tongariro - 6457 ft./1968 m.
- Mount Walter - 9514 ft./2900 m.
- Mt Aylmer - 8855 ft./2699 m.
- Mt Tapuaenuku - 9465 ft./2885 m.
- Pukekaikiore - 5551 ft./1692 m.
- Ruapehu - 9175 ft./2796 m.
- Silberhorn - 10836 ft./3303 m.
- Tarewera - 3645 ft./1111 m.
- The Pinnacles - 2490 ft./759 m.