New Zealand Hiking Grades and Fitness

Hiking walks, tours and safaris have been categorized to assist you in selecting a hiking trip that is correct for you. Fitness is subjective, what you may think is easy may be hard to somebody else or vice versa.

Grades Descriptions

Grade A

  • Overall good health required.
  • No particular fitness abilities

View all Grade A Trips

Grade B

  • Average of 4-5 hours physical activity per day
  • You need to be able to carry a small backpack of 4-5kgs (9-11 lbs)
  • Trails mostly in a good state
  • Altitude rises of up to 600m (2000ft) on tougher days
  • No hiking experience required
  • Reasonable standard of fitness needed

View all Grade B Trips

Grade C

  • Up to 6 hours of physical activity per day
  • You need to be able to carry a backpack of 5-6kgs (11-13 lbs)
  • Trails mostly in a good state
  • Altitude rises of up to 600m (2000ft) on tougher days
  • No hiking experience necessary
  • Reasonable standard of fitness required
  • NZ Uncut - some overnight tramps comprise alpine hiking, uneven terrain and carrying a backpack of 10-12kgs (22-26 lbs)

View all Grade C Trips

Grade D

  • Average 4-5 hours physical activity per day, up to 8-9 hours on longer days
  • Backpack weights of 10-12kgs (22-26 lbs) need to be carried on some days
  • Altitude gains of up to 800m (2600ft)
  • Some uneven track surfaces and river crossings
  • No multi-day hiking experience necessary
  • Good fitness and agility required

View all Grade D Trips

Grade E

  • Up to 8-9 hours physical activity each day
  • Backpack weights of 12-15kgs (26-33 lbs)
  • Altitude gains of 900 to 1000m (2950 to 3300ft)
  • Some exposure to heights
  • Hiking experience necessary.
  • High level of fitness required

View all Grade E Trips