Steep, thuggy climbing on smooth andesite in an outrageous mountain location, with a giant water feature – what more could you want? White Falls is truly unique and if hard sport climbing is your thing, look no further. You may find the odd loose hold, a bit of seepage here and there or suffer a ‘freeze out’ in the frigid mountain air, but you’ll be amply compensated for your persistence with a satisfying pump and (more or less) the best sunset in all of climbing.
"Park at the Turoa carpark and listen for the expletives of the Aucklanders." – Rob Addis. White Falls is in the upper Mangaturuturu Valley, several hundred metres in altitude above Mangaturuturu hut, on the western slopes of Mt Ruapehu. To get there drive from Ohakune up the mountain road and park in the top Turoa skifield carpark. From here walk northwards past the workshop area to the far corner of the grounds, past the helipad. Head north across the slope, generally maintaining your height as you cross several small streams and pass downhill of a waterfall. After 15 minutes or so you should reach a rocky outcrop and a more substantial watercourse leading to a significant waterfall. This is White Falls. Cross the stream above the falls and continue along the scarp until you see a place to scramble down, then walk back along beneath the cliff line until you reach the falls and the climbing.