The Club has built and owned three huts over its almost 100 year history.
The first, Ngaro Te Kotare, was opened in the Waitakere Ranges in 1929 and continues to be enjoyed by Club members and the public alike.
Te Hapua Hut in the Hunuas followed shortly after, flourishing for 24 years before making way for the Mangatawhiri Reservoir – read more.
The third was Memorial Hut, a comfortable ski lodge in a spectacular location on the flanks of Ruapehu.
Ngaro Te Kotare past and present
To book Ngaro Te Kotare, use our hut booking form.
The Club bought a 7.5 acre site in the Waitakere Ranges in 1928 with the assistance of a loan from various members. Before that time the bush had been cleared and the land farmed.
Since 1928 the bush has made a remarkable recovery, so the hut is now situated in a grassy clearing surrounded by thick bush and mature trees.
Building started in December 1928 with foundation blocks cut from the remains of a fallen totara.
Construction progressed remarkably quickly given its then remote location. Imagine this – on most weekends club members would catch the Saturday afternoon train to Henderson and walk the nine miles to the hut site carrying building materials on top of their packs!
Ngaro Te Kotare was officially opened on 17 March 1929, and immediately became an indispensable part of Club life. Right through to the 1960s the hut was used most weekends.
However in later years as the Waitakeres became less remote and accessing tramping areas outside Auckland much easier, use dropped off. It’s now somewhat of a best kept secret, a wonderful getaway within very easy reach of Auckland.
It has also been a location for several movies – Star Sam Neill is reported to have made himself right at home during the filming of Hunt for the Wilderpeople.
In June 2019 the club held a celebratory 90th birthday party for and at Ngaro Te Kotare – see the report and photos. And we’re already thinking about it’s centenary celebration …
Memorial Hut aka ATC SnowSports Lodge
ATC's Memorial Hut was one of the fist club lodges to be built at Iwikau Village, Mt Ruapehu. It was a mammoth club effort, commenced in 1945 and culminating in the official opening during Easter, 1950.
At the time club trips were starting to travel more frequently away from the Auckland area, and the expansion into providing a base for skiing and other alpine activities well suited the Club’s membership profile – younger and more family centric than today’s membership.
The new hut was named Memorial Hut as a memorial to club members who served in the second world war, particularly the five club members who died while serving overseas.
A roll of honour was created and hung at the hut until 2018, at which point the original was gifted to the Auckland Museum, with a copy made and now on display at Ngaro Te Kotare Hut. There is plaque attached to the outside of the hut that remembers the five club members who did not return.
The hut became a major base for club skiing, climbing, tramping and working bee activities on Mt Ruapehu through the following decades, with a number of major extensions making it into a true mountain lodge, including a large lounge area with stunning views to the surrounding landscapes.
No two sunrises or sunsets were the same, irrespective of the time of year.
Over the years club usage of Memorial Hut declined, with the hut’s committed finances being supported increasingly by non-member usage – school groups and Defence Forces Antarctic training amongst others. The Club embarked on various initiatives to increase usage.
However, in 2017 the Club made the difficult decision to find a new owner for the hut, with this resulting in the transfer to a group of 5 central North Island schools in September 2018.
One of 3 huts built by the Club, Memorial Hut has played a central role in the Club's history.
Booking Memorial Hut
Even though Memorial Hut is now being operated by the Central Plateau Schools Alpine Charitable Trust, ATC members can use their website booking system to book the hut.
The following rules apply:
1. The hut can only be booked as a whole hut basis per night.
2. When booking use "Auckland Tramping Club Member" as the School/Group Name.
3. Your group must consist principally of Auckland Tramping Club members only. We will assist the CPSACT booking administrator to confirm this.
4. By booking as an Auckland Tramping Club group you will be invoiced the CPSACT Schools rate (currently $300 per night).
5. Before submitting your booking, please ensure that your requested dates are free in their booking calendar.
6. Please read and understand their booking terms and conditions.
7. When using Memorial Hut treat it positively and leave it in better condition than you find it. Our continued usage of the Hut depends on there being no issues with how ATC members treat the Hut.