Trampers asked to be kaitiaki of Tongariro National Park

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A campaign to encourage visitors to respect the special values of Tongariro National Park and the maunga has been launched by iwi and the Department of Conservation.

New Zealand popular tourist hiking hike in Tongariro Alpine Crossing National Park. Tramping trampers couple hikers walking on famous destination in NZ.

Photo: Maridav/123RF

Thousands of trampers use the park’s 175 kilometres of tracks each year.

The campaign is focusing on better awareness of the unique culture, nature and weather on the maunga.

Conservation Minister Kiri Allan said many more people were expected in the park over summer than usual.

In 2019/20 122,200 people walked the Tongariro Alpine day hike.

Allan is asking them to be exceptional kaitiaki, guardians, and take care of the environment, look after each other and respect the cultural values on what is a sacred mountain.

She said people needed to be well prepared and equipped when they went into the national park.

“If you are going to do the day walk we are asking people please don’t climb up to the summit or touch alpine lakes or the streams. They are really really sacred to iwi.

“Leave a very light footprint.”

Tongariro Alpine Crossing

Photo: DOC

Allan said with more people using the park, the pressure on it was mounting.

“Some additional stresses and strains on the facilities that we have to offer and they are exceptional facilities.”

She said Tongariro was a really special place to many people.

“One of the best, in my opinion, day walks in the world.”

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