Wild Walks

A unique philosophy to hiking in New Zealand - Wild Walks by Aspiring Guides

The wild and remote nature of New Zealand's landscape and weather means that for most people, backcountry travel is limited to a few well established walking trails. While these popular tracks are often called "The Great Walks" they are not the best walks - just the popular ones!

Take the road less travelled. We guide only small groups (max 5) on our New Zealand hiking adventures. Let us take you on a truly "Wild Walk" - where no one else can. From seriously tough multi day alpine treks to easier family orientated family hiking and camping, we provide a true wilderness experience.

Aspiring Guides is professional mountain guiding company.   We have been offering guided climbing, skiing and hiking adventures in the South Island of NZ since 1990.  We are not just tour operators and our Wild Walks hiking trips operate the wildest backcountry New Zealand has to offer.

Based out of Wanaka and Queenstown, our Wild Walks explore the lesser travelled corners of the Mt Aspiring National Park and the South West World Heritage Area - where the scenery is always spectacular, and the challenges many.

Come and join us for a Wild Walk in the unique NZ wilderness - join a scheduled trek or book a private trip now!

Wild Walks Summer

Cascade Saddle Assisted Trek  2 day

Cascade Saddle Assisted Trek 2 day

Cascade Saddle is a popular four day hike. Surprisingly it has the highest fatality rate of any route in New Zealand.  Although it is usually benign, the route can be dange...

2DAYS
1:6PEOPLE
NOV - APRPERIOD
From $355PER PERSON
Tent ACCOMMODATION
Aspiring Discovery  3 day

Aspiring Discovery 3 day

Our Mount Aspiring Discovery guided hiking trip offers people three days and two fantastic nights at our incomparable private Aspiring Camp Site. Situated high over the East Mat...

3DAYS
1:5PEOPLE
OCT - APRPERIOD
From $1195PER PERSON
Walk ACCESS IN
Walk ACCESS OUT
Upper Wilkin Experience  4 day

Upper Wilkin Experience 4 day

This 4 day New Zealand guided trek is a fantastic introduction to the wilderness hiking tracks of New Zealand.  This hiking adventure will take you deep into the NZ backcou...

4DAYS
1:5PEOPLE
OCT - MAYPERIOD
From $1975PER PERSON
Plane ACCESS IN
Boat ACCESS OUT
Gillespie Pass  4 day

Gillespie Pass 4 day

Waterfalls and glacier views make this a journey not to be missed.  Gillespie Pass is located in the heart New Zealand's Mount Aspiring National Park. This trip takes i...

4DAYS
1:5PEOPLE
NOV - APRPERIOD
From $1715PER PERSON
Walk ACCESS IN
Boat ACCESS OUT
Rabbit Pass  4 day

Rabbit Pass 4 day

If you are not afraid of heights and want a challenging “real NZ” hiking experience, this is without a doubt “THE” trek to do. Once the grassy flats of t...

4DAYS
1:4PEOPLE
DEC - APRPERIOD
From $1850PER PERSON
Plane ACCESS IN
Walk ACCESS OUT
Gillespie Rabbit Pass Traverse  8 day

Gillespie Rabbit Pass Traverse 8 day

The Gillespie/Rabbit Pass trip is widely regarded as New Zealand's hardest guided hiking tour. Following the main divide of the South Island this route has exceptional ...

8DAYS
1:4PEOPLE
DEC - APRPERIOD
From $3105PER PERSON
Tent ACCOMMODATION
Lake Nerine 4 day

Lake Nerine 4 day

The Lake Nerine circuit is a rugged tramp through remote parts of Mt Aspiring National Park. The route involves a 6km alpine hike along the main divide crossing over Park Pass a...

4DAYS
1:4PEOPLE
JAN - APRPERIOD
From $$1950PER PERSON
Tent ACCOMMODATION
Adelaide Cirque Fiordland 4 day

Adelaide Cirque Fiordland 4 day

The stunning Adelaide Cirque at the head of Moraine Creek is one of Fiordland's hidden gems. Lake Adelaide is surrounded by jagged peaks and massive cliffs. The setting is r...

4DAYS
1:2PEOPLE
JAN - APRPERIOD
From $2,750PER PERSON
Tent ACCOMMODATION

Client Comments:

8 day Gillespie-Rabbit Pass Traverse : "Neil was relaxed, capable and ensured we all enjoyed the beauty of our surroundings.  He was a wealth of knowledge and considerate and professional with a friendly manner. Jess was professional and definitely knew what she was doing and had everything all sorted and organised. So between the two it was a good balance. The entire trip was enjoyable with incredible beauty around every corner.  A collection of great photos and lasting memories that ensure we can't wait to return."

Melissa Nakhle

8 day Gillespie-Rabbit Pass : Aspiring Guides is an organisation that is passionate about mountain adventures (hiking or climbing) but is also very professional in the way it conducts itself.  I could not have done the Rabbit Pass without Emma’s & Jess’s guidance & help - it’s as simple as that. However, with them looking after us I always felt safe & in very good hands. Their professionalism & experience shone through in everything they did.

Chris 2016

Rabbit Pass 4-day:  Did you achieve what you wanted from your trip?  -  Yes and more!  As it was more challenging than I had expected it made for a different, and more rewarding, experience.  All features surpassed expectations – Jo, the scenery, the weather, the challenge, food and accommodation”  

Liam Prescott, Australia

Mt Aspiring Glacier Expedition 3-day:  " It .. was a perfect father and son experience with my 15 year old son. We were after a memorable adventure, and we sure got it. It was the two of us with an experienced guide, Tony.  We trekked along the valley, crossed freezing rivers barefoot, battled gravity 1,000m with our packs up very steep NZ  mountains, stayed in a mountaineering hut amongst the mountains. And that was Day 1. Day 2 involved crampons, ice axes and ropes. We came very close to crevices, but stayed away. Another 900m straight up, before descending down to the hut. For anyone in need of a serious challenge, a memorable experience and a heap of fun - try this one.  The company is very experienced, the guides good and the pricing reasonable given the low ratio of clients per guide.”  

Alastair, Sydney, Australia

Gillespie Pass 4-day:  “Although it was difficult steep route- the end result and amazing view made it all worth it.  We were able to relax while enjoying the beautiful views of the natural scenery . A very relaxing, stress free trip. George ensured river crossings were safe before we attempted them and the regular weather updates also ensured that we didn't end up in a dangerous situation on Gillepsie Pass. Everything from food to accommodation was very well organised making it an enjoyable trip. ”  

George and teenage children, Sydney Australia

Custom Wild Walk:  "I loved NZ, the people, the wildlife, the picturesque scenery, and the humor, efficiency, and professionalism of the AG staff.  I would definitely like to come back. "

Mary Miller, USA

It was very challenging but we chose to have a guide due to the difficulty of this route. Our day across the saddle was long and pretty arduous with thigh deep creek crossing at the end..!! But the view was spectacular and well worth it!  Jess was thoroughly professional and focused on safety. She did a great job in getting us to the top. Thank you so much for your patience and guidance... I doubt we would have made it otherwise (and still be on speaking terms anyway). I would recommend this trip for friends who wanted a real challenge and had done the 'easy' walks already. Amazingly fulfilling experience for all of us!  The girls are planning their next trip of course...

Hewitt Family, Australia

"It was such an incredible experience, I felt so proud to have made it over both passes and it has certainly boosted my enthusiasm to get out into the wilderness more regularly. Stunning scenery.
I've told so many friends about Aspiring Guides and specifically the walk we did."

 

Cat Owen, Australia

I chose this Wild Walk because there are no huts, few people, and it's wild. I recommend it for the lovely scenery, and the walk is challenging. Tim is a superb guide. High quality walk. I liked it.

Francsois, Feb 2017

"Off the beaten track trips appeal to me. Loved the impressive views all the way along. Bivying out.  Accessing an area that few people get to see. Being away from crowded tracks. Oh...and the tomato relish :0)))) I'm delighted to have had an enjoyable trip in and out of this hidden gem."

Michelle, New Zealand, Feb 2017

"We were very confident that Aspiring Guides would give us the small group experience we were looking for. I loved the Valley walking and the experience of the other people on the trip  I also loved how beautiful the scenery was, just so unlike what we get in Australia. It was stunning.  I was so impressed by Michael as our guide. He actually made the trip for me. While relatively young in years, his experience really shone and the way he dealt with people of differing ages and experiences was just so impressive. I learned a lot from him over the few days.My overall impression of Aspiring Guides from this particular trip was that it's a very professionally run organisation and you guys know what you're doing. It must get exhausting trying to make everyone's experience special and unique when you've done a trip so many times - but you guys do an excellent job of this and I felt very grateful. I survived and am looking forward to my next hike :)"

Jess, Australia

Gillespie Pass 2017 : "Often in Australia the news broadcast starts off with "a tourist was completely under-prepared for the conditions….', and either died or had to be rescued.  I knew that I could trust Carla to keep me safe so that I could focus on just enjoying my trip.  The Train2Trek program was a great asset for Jo especially (simply because she is unfortunate enough to be chained to a desk 8 hours a day). The training helped her with muscle strength, fitness and endurance. Carla made sure that the pace of the walk was suited to us both. I knew that crossing that mountain would be tough, and I loved it.  Sitting up there on such a beautiful day for a few hours was just magnificent."

Dan & Jo, Australia

The impression given of the level of difficulty was very accurate. It was just right for me - sometimes demanding but not exhausting. The precautions on the potentially dangerous areas were absolutely great - I never felt at risk. George was very hands-off at other times but we were experienced walkers, so I think he judged it pretty well. I'd highly recommended this Wild Walk to anyone who's after a spectacular walk and fit enough to do it. The best tramp in NZ? Would do it again in a heartbeat. Superbly organised with the food and gear stashes. 

Philip, Australia - Gillespie-Rabbit 2017

Back to Top