Fanthams Peak-Panitahi and Syme Hut Track

Image: Sean Thomson | Creative Commons


On a clear day this tramp offers great views up the mountain and down to the Taranaki Ring Plain and the coastline.

Track overview

Walking and tramping

5–6 hr return Advanced: Tramping track
Expert: Route

Dog access

No dogs

About this track


This challenging tramp climbs through forest to Hillary Seat. From here it continues uphill past Hooker Shelter (1140 m) and the turnoff to Kapuni Lodge before ascending a staircase to reach steep scoria slopes. Snow poles mark the route to Fanthams Peak/Panitahi (1,966 m) and Syme Hut.

Getting there

The track starts from the road end at Dawson Falls.

In Stratford, turn off SH23 into Celia Street, which becomes Opunake Road. Follow this for 14 km, then turn right into Manaia Road and travel 9 km up the mountain to Dawson Falls visitor centre.

History and culture

Known as Panitahi by Māori, Fanthams Peak was named after Fanny Fantham who was the first European woman to climb the peak in 1887.

Syme Hut was named after local mountain climbing pioneer Rod Syme.

Know before you go

This route is exposed and not recommended in ice and snow unless an experienced mountaineer.

Weather on the mountain changes rapidly – you must be well prepared with suitable clothing and equipment for all weather and conditions.

Snow, high rainfall and storm damage can make tracks impassable – many rivers and streams are unbridged.

Check the Egmont National Park weather forecast before you go.

Dawson Falls Visitor Centre is open reduced hours: Thursday – Sunday 9am – 4pm; 7 days a week during school holidays, 9am – 4pm.


Dawson Falls Visitor Centre
Phone:   +64 27 443 0248
Fax:   +64 4 471 1117
Address:   Manaia Rd
Egmont National Park
Postal Address:   PO Box 462
New Plymouth 4340
Egmont National Park Visitor Centre
Phone:   +64 6 756 0990
Fax:   +64 4 471 1117
Address:   2879 Egmont Rd
Egmont National Park
Postal Address:   PO Box 462
New Plymouth 4340
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