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Below is a list of Frequently Asked Questions.

The list is loooong,
You can pick your category below, or jump to each section by using the menu on the right.

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Compass & Map

Club Gear


All Things Trips

Helicopter Rescue



Instructional Courses





Why should I join AUTC?

No matter what skill level you are, there is something for you! AUTC provides a community for people to get outdoors and explore. Join us for social meetups, day trips, instructional courses or multi-day tramps. Whatever floats your boat!

What is AUTC?

AUTC is a club of outdoors enthusiasts who love tramping. We love getting out in nature, exploring, pushing our limits, learning, and spending time with others who share our passion. We are a bit of a crazy bunch but in the best way. We live life to the fullest!

How do I become a member?

Sign up HERE or in person at our orientation stall on campus at the start of each semester.

Can I still be a member if I am not a student?

Of course! All are welcome. Many of our members are not students or do not study at the University of Auckland.

How much does membership cost?

$20 for University of Auckland students. $30 for non-students or students from other universities.

How do I get my membership card?

Membership cards are available at the orientation stall at the beginning of each semester, at our large social events, or get in touch with our Memberships Officer at

All Thing Trips

All Things Trips

How often are club trips or events happening?

Trip frequency varies depending on the time of semester since many of our members are students. Generally there is a club trip or event each fortnight but this could be more or less depending on how busy our members are. In a typical year when we are not in lockdown, we can have 60+ trips.

How do I find out about trips and how do I join them?

Once you join the club you will be added to our club mailing list. Each club trip and event is emailed out to this mailing list and the email will have instructions on how to sign up. Often the process will be to reply to the email or fill out a google form.

What level of difficulty are the trips?

We have tramps for all levels of difficulty. From relaxed day trips around Auckland or a foray to Maccas to month long expeditions to the depths of the South Island wilderness. Many styles of tramp come through our mailing list.

The signup emails sent out to the mailing list with all the information for the tramp will outline the expected level of difficulty and if you are unsure you can always email the trip organiser to find out more.

What gear or experience do I need to go on trips?

Each trip will have its own individual gear and experience requirements outlined on the signups email so you can pick and choose which trips suit you. Day trips around Auckland for example likely won’t require more than a daypack and sneakers and may have no fitness or experience requirements. An alpine trip to Ruapehu on the other hand will likely require at least basic alpine skills and snow gear.


If you do not have the required gear for a trip get in touch with our gear officer at who may have club gear available to lend. Also check out our instructional courses if you’re interested in upskilling to go on more adventures.

Will I be getting muddy?

Yes. Embrace the mud.

I've just been on a cool trip and want to share it with others.
How do I submit a trip report?

Write up your report (or poem, or artwork, or deeply meaningful ode to the mountains) and email it to and it will be published in our annual magazine Footprints.

Instructional Courses

Instructional Courses

What instructional courses are run?

Every year we hold Bushskool, Snowskool and outdoor first aid courses along with instructional evenings such as map reading, navigation and gear packing.  From time to time we also organise a number of externally run courses such as Avalanche Awareness. Find out more about our courses HERE

How much do these courses cost?

AUTC hosts the cheapest courses by a country mile.

Internally run courses such as Bushskool and Snowskool are instructed by volunteers and run at cost. Typically courses will cost in the $50 - $300 range, this usually includes food, accommodation and transport.


The costs of externally run courses like First Aid are set by the provider. By arranging for a large number of people, we can often get a bulk discount rate.

How do I get on a course?

The course will be advertised through the mailing list in the same manner as normal trips. Complete the instructions on the email (usually filling out a google form) and then you will be informed whether you have secured a place on the course or not. Preference is usually given to active members of the club.

There is a course I would like to do but it isn't advertised?

Get in touch with one of our committee members and we can talk about whether this is something we can organise.

Club Gear
Compass & Map

Club Gear

How do I borrow club gear?

We a range of gear including tents, cookers, emergency shelters, personal locator beacons (PLBs), pots, topographical maps, compasses. Get in touch with our gear officer at to find out what gear is available.
If you would like to borrow alpine gear, get in touch with the alpine officers at

What happens if I damage/lose club gear?

This is assessed on a case by case basis. If the gear is lost or damaged due to negligence/poor treatment then you may be expected to cover some of the cost of replacement. However, we do understand that you are taking gear into often harsh environments and accidents or damage can and does happen. As a general rule, if it gets lost/damaged while you are using it appropriately, you won't be expected to contribute.

Does the club have PLB's I can borrow?

Yes! The club has several PLBs we lend to club members. These include T.A.R.D.I.S (Topographical Accident oR Dangerous Injury Saviour) and the Thomas Goodman Memorial PLB (don’t worry, Tom is [mostly] fine) to name a few.
These can be borrowed from the safety officer at

Helicopter Rescue


What should I do if someone I know hasn't returned from a trip?

If you are concerned about someone who hasn't returned; dial 111 and ask for the police, they will then co-ordinate any rescue response (if required) including LandSAR.

If you're not if you should be concerned:

Email & We have systems in place for this eventuality, and will be able to provide advice or contact the relevant authorities.

How does the Intentions system work?

By submitting your intentions for your trip HERE, we are able to keep track of your trip. At the end date/time of your trip, the safety officer will attempt to contact you to ensure made it out safely. In the event that they cannot contact you, they will attempt to contact others in the group. If nobody in your group cannot be reached, the Safety Officer will, after a period of time (depending on the trip, and group experience, usually less than 24 hours) contact the relevant authorities.

Because of this it is important that you fill out as much information as possible on the intentions form.

Note: this is a supplement to, not a replacement for, safe behaviour in the outdoors.

Ultimately you are responsible for your own safety.

Can I send in intentions even if I am not a member?

To avoid swamping our system, we kindly ask that you look to friends/family as your first option.

However, if there is nobody you are comfortable sending intentions to, you are welcome to use our system.

Everyone's safety is important to us.

If I get rescued, will I have to pay?

Almost certainly not.
In New Zealand the cost of rescue is paid by the government (through ACC) and various volunteer organisations. Rescues are carried out by the Police and LandSAR.
In some instances where the cause of rescue was malicious, reckless, or non-genuine you may be asked to contribute.

Read the official Police response to this HERE

Examples of genuine rescues:

  • Any obstacle that may prevent you from leaving the backcountry (Trapped by a flooded river, landslide, lost etc..)

  • Any injury that may prevent you from leaving the backcountry (sprained ankle, concussion, illness etc...)

  • Any immediate or imminent threat

Examples of non-genuine rescues:

  • Running late for a flight

Do I have to submit intentions for club trips?

Yes. It is compulsory to submit intentions for club trips and strongly recommended for all trips.

It does not have to be a club trip for intentions to be submitted.



What is tramping?

Tramping is defined as: the recreational activity of going for long-distance walks in rough country. Also known as hiking overseas it generally consists of multi day walks in the backcountry, often over rough terrain, and staying in huts or tents overnight.

Why is May Camp not in May?

May camp is a tradition that has been held in various forms since 1942. It is now one of the biggest events held by the club each year and consists of many club members spending the weekend, traditionally in the Hunuas or Waitakeres, tramping and partying together. In the past, uni semesters had holidays in May. In the 90s a shift was made to the two semester system and so the holiday shifted to July but the name still stuck.

Is AUTC a cult?

Cult is such a strong word…

How can I be more involved?

Come on tramps, join us at events, organise your own trips and send them to the mailing list, become a General Member to support the club and committee, become a member of the committee!

Where can I find old footprints magazines?

Check out the Footprints on our website HERE or get in touch with our Archives Officer if you want more info


We have a hut?

Yes Ōngāruanuku. Ōngāruanuku is located in the Waitakere Ranges and translates most appropriately to ‘Meeting Place of the Wizards’! Click HERE to find out more.

How can I access committee meeting minutes, the constitution,
or other club documentation?

They are available on the downloads page HERE.

I have found a mistake on the website, is there a bounty?

It depends... Email and maybe we can come to some arrangement...

What if I need a freshly pressed shirt while tramping, do you cater for this?

This Question has intentionally been left blank.

It happens to the best of us...

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