We have just completed the Tongariro crossing which is one of the nine great walks of New Zealand. We set off at 10.20am and got to the end point at 5pm and the track is 19.4 km in total. The track passes between Mt Ngauruhoe (Mt Doom from Lord of the Rings) and Mt Tongariro both of which are active volcanoes which was pretty amazing. When we first set off the weather forecast was a bit dodgy so weren't sure if we were going to see much. The cloud was low for most of the morning so we had very limited views of mount doom but the terrain itself was spectacular and well worth seeing! As we climbed higher the wind picked up and it was so strong! Trying to climb upwards with a cross wind was so hard. The syndrome in my hands decided to kick in too which wasn't handy when trying to hold onto rocks! When we reached the summit the path was so narrow we both thought we were going to be blown off the top of the volcano! We had to crouch down to make sure we didn't get blown away. Next time we decided we need to eat 20 doughnuts first to weigh us down.
Once we had gone over the top of the summit the path down was really loose soil material so carefully had to make our way down (definitely fell over a few times) but the view was well worth it. The lakes on the other side were bright emerald blue which was incredible. The wind was intense the whole way down so I was very glad I'd bothered to bring my trousers with me (as they had only recommended shorts) which I got changed into on the side of the mountain. The way down was not as interesting as was mainly a long and winding path however the sun came out which was nice, and finished the walk was the best. So glad I did it, never seen anything like it before so pretty incredible. Even better the bus came to pick is up at the end and they gave us free beer!