Attempting to summit Mt Karioi, Raglan🌊☀ with my 7 year old

Enjoy this adventure written by my friend Stacey about her and her’s son attempt to summit (I know that sounds so hardcore👊💪🤣) Mt Karioi – a 2.4 million year old extinct volcano🗻.

In all the times I’ve been to Raglan I’d never considered attempting the Kairoi summit (the mountain you can see from Raglan). But this time because I was training for the Oxfam 50km Trailwalker I decided to give it a go with my son, Leo (age 7 ½). We left early as it was going to be a hot summer’s day and I’m sure glad we did as we were sweating within the first 30 minutes.

The drive out was along the coast about 15 minutes south of Raglan. The parking is the same as Te Toto Gorge which is well worth a look (a few minutes from the car park). The track to the Kairoi summit starts across the road from the car park.  

The track is pretty much straight up from here with only a few level bits. Luckily a decent amount is in the trees but definitely slap on sunscreen and a hat ahead of time. Make sure you bring lots of water. My son carried his own bladder (water in a little backpack) and a few snacks.

The views just kept getting better as we climbed higher and higher. I’d recommend going on a clear day to make the most of the views. After walking for about an hour and a half we made it to the first ladder and decided to stop here. The views were incredible, we could see Mount Taranaki (often used as a stand in for Mount Fuji) in the distance. The walk to the summit was at least another hour from here but we decided to head back down.


A decent walk for a 7 ½ year old. Next time maybe we’ll aim for the summit as you can do this as a loop walk or even start from the other side and have a more gradual climb.  

For the Department of Conservation track information click here

Good effort Stacey and Leo! You guys have succeeded in making me want to have a go with my eldest boy 👍.

How about you, are you inspired??? Comment below


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