Day Hikes gear

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5 essential things to do before you go to ensure you have a great trip and make it home.


New Zealand has some of the world’s most challenging environments. Always choose adventures that match your skill level, always pack prepared and make sure you have enough to eat and drink – it’s how we stay safe. Check the conditions, make sure you have the right gear and tell someone where you’re going.

It’s how we visit the Kiwi way.

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Plan my trip tool.

Heading out for a day walk brochure.
Day walks guide: English | French | Spanish | German

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Multiday tramping guide: English

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Hunting guide: English | Te Reo Maori

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Mountain biking guide: English

To have a great time in the outdoors:

  • Know before you go, the five simple rules of the Outdoor Safety Code to help you stay safe
  • Contact the nearest DOC visitor centre for the latest information about facilities and conditions

Outdoor Safety Code

1. Plan your trip

Seek local knowledge and plan the route you will take and the amount of time you can reasonably expect it to take. 

Find out how to plan your trip

View the Planning a trip in the backcountry? brochure (PDF, 668K).

2. Tell someone

Tell someone your plans and leave a date to raise the alarm if you haven’t returned.

Telling somebody is about the Outdoors Intentions process: the way that visitors leave information with others about their intended trip into the outdoors and return time.

Find out how to tell someone your plans

3. Be aware of the weather

New Zealand’s weather can be highly changeable. Check the forecast and expect weather changes.

As well being aware of the weather you need be avalanche alert as they can occur in any season. You need to understand the risks before you visit avalanche-prone country.

Find out how be aware of the weather

4. Know your limits

Challenge yourself within your physical limits and experience.

Find out how to know your limits

5. Take sufficient supplies

Make sure you have enough food, clothing, equipment and emergency rations for the worst-case scenario. Take an appropriate means of communication.

Find out what are sufficient supplies

About the Outdoor Safety Code

The Outdoor Safety Code is a whole of New Zealand approach to outdoor safety.

The group backing the Outdoor Safety Code includes: Department of Conservation, New Zealand Search and Rescue Council, Mountain Safety Council, Land Search and Rescue, the Police, Tourism New Zealand, ACC, Tourism Industry Association, Sport New Zealand, and the Walking Access Commission.

Other safety codes

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