From first hand experience, I can tell you that there is nothing more magical than watching fingers of light begin to touch Tongariro's mountain tops and knowing that you are in the minority of the world's population to witness the first sunrise on that day.
It's been found young children have much earlier recollections than adults do of their childhood. Two-year-olds can describe memories of personal events that happened months earlier. Yet, most of these reminiscences eventually become obscured over time.
The skies turned threatening as I reached Summit Lake at 12,000 feet, but I continued creeping up to the top. The summit was socked in, but that didn't deter scores of visitors from climbing the remaining quarter-mile trail to the peak.