Isobel Glacier Heli-hike
The Isobel Glacier Heli-hike in association with Aspiring Helicopters is the ultimate snow trekking experience. Check out crevasses and icefalls as you and your guide explore a remote glacier and landscapes of the world-heritage Mount Aspiring National Park and the Southern Alps / Kā Tiritiri o te Moana.
Our glacier heli-hike takes place on the Isobel Glacier on the northern slopes of Mount Tyndall. Savour the views of high alpine peaks of Tititea / Mount Aspiring through to Mount Earnslaw and green valleys high from high up on the main divide of the Southern Alps / Kā Tiritiri o te Moana.
We meet at the Aspiring Helicopters hangar in Cattle Flat near the bottom of the Treble Cone ski field road first thing in the morning. After introductions and gear checks, the helicopter takes off and travels 15-20 minutes along the Matukituki Valley, across the Harris Mountains, and deep into the heart of the Southern Alps / Kā Tiritiri o te Moana. The group is dropped off high on the glacier under the slopes of Mount Tyndall.
The guide will introduce the technical equipment and skills required to safety move around the glacier including using crampons or snowshoes. This will allow the group to explore the glacier and views in all directions and experience the features of the glacier up close including crevasses, terminal lakes, and ice falls. At the end of the day, the helicopter returns for the scenic flight back to Wānaka.
What to Expect
A full range of conditions can be expected in the NZ mountains and participants need to be suitably prepared.
You will need:
- Snow boots (available for hire)
- Long sleeved tops
- A warm and waterproof jacket
- Long outdoor pants
- Sunhat and sunscreen
- Warm hat
We provide any required technical equipment such as crampons, ice axes, or snowshoes.
Glacier Heli-hike Fitness and Difficulty
All trips are individually tailored to mountain conditions, fitness, and personal ambition. There are a variety of options and routes available.
No mountaineering experience is required. All required technical equipment is provided.
We also provide overnight heli-hike options either camping on the glacier in our expedition tents, staying in alpine huts, or transferring to Whare Kea Chalet for a more luxurious experience. Staying overnight gives you the opportunity to witness the alpine panoramas throughout the evening light, sunset, and sunrise. The remote location will provide amazing star gazing opportunities and maybe even experience the Southern Lights / Aurora Australis. All food and equipment is provided.
|Duration: 5 – 6 hours or overnight|
|Summer 2023/24 dates: November to April|
Trips are run subject to weather. Please get in touch to express an interest in private trips.
|From $890 per person|
Includes: GST, guide fees, compliance costs, 2 scenic helicopter flights, lunch and snacks, and technical equipment.
|Maximum ratio: 1:4|
‘A relaxing getaway with an old mate combined with a cool lodge and back country skiing. Awesome slopes. Staying at Whare Kea Chalet was an amazing place with awesome facilities and luxury beds with a view of the Milky Way! Backcountry ski touring with a guide in remote locations takes all the stress out of making decisions.’
— Murray, Whare Kea Chalet Ski Tour
‘Really good no1 fun day. Perfect conditions, great guide, got everything out of the trip that we wanted and more: fresh tracks, beautiful scenery, stunning weather, great company, and very safe and knowledgeable guide.’
— Wayne, Treble Cone Backcountry Tour
‘Very good guiding, very good cooking, very good company.’
— Robert, Private Ski Guiding