New Zealand's 2010 ski season opens
04 Jun 2010
The first New Zealand ski field of the season is set to open tomorrow morning (5.06.2010) - just in time for the long Queen’s Birthday weekend.
Coronet Peak, Queenstown, has received enough snow to open as scheduled. Skiing and snowboarding will be limited on the lower slopes until more snow falls, but the upper mountain has good skiing and riding conditions and some off-piste areas will also be accessible.
"We will open with the Coronet Express Quad and the brand-new Meadows Express Quad providing access to the M1, Million Dollar, Wall Street, Shirtfront and Big Easy trails. The Magic Carpet and beginners’ area will also be operating," Coronet ski area manager Hamish McCrostie said.
More than 100 snow guns have been pumping out snow at Coronet Peak to add to the natural 30-centimetre base already there.
The ski field will also put on a special ‘Welcome to Winter’ party tomorrow night for their season pass holders.
NZSki launches new technology
NZSki’s new radio-frequency pass system - dubbed ‘mypass’ - will also kick off tomorrow to coincide with the opening of Coronet Peak.
The new passes, which will be used on Coronet Peak, Mt Hutt and The Remarkables ski areas, are seen as a vast improvement on the older-style ‘widget’ passes.
"We’re looking forward to getting the season underway, getting people used to the new ‘mypass’ and NZSki RF technology, opening the new Meadows Express chairlift and welcoming people back to Coronet for the winter.
"Opening day is always a great catch-up and reunion for locals and those who return each winter," McCrostie said.
Coronet Peak is the first and oldest commercial ski field in New Zealand. It opened in 1947 with just a single rope tow lift.
The 2010 ski season sees a number of new improvements added to the ski field including an upgrade of the Big Easy novice area and new Meadows Express chairlift which has a ‘kid stop’ mechanism and extra safety features.
White gold covers NZ ski areas
Ski fields around the country have been receiving promising snow falls and are all set to open on schedule, with some even predicting early opening dates.
The South Island’s Mt Cook Mckenzie region has received a week of consistent snowfall, and it is likely that Mt Dobson will open earlier than the scheduled 1 July launch date. Ohau has 75cm of snow on the upper mountain and final preparations are underway for its 26 June opening.
In the North Island, Mt Ruapehu - home to the popular ski areas of Turoa and Whakapapa, has commenced snowmaking and the ski fields are on track to open on schedule.
Winter 2010 - NZ ski field opening dates
North Island ski areas:
- Tukino - 3 July
- Turoa - 19 June
- Whakapapa - 26 June
South Island ski areas:
- Cardrona - 25 June
- Coronet Peak - 5 June
- Craigieburn Valley - 3 July
- Mt Hutt - 12 June
- Ohau - 26 June
- Snow Park - 25 June
- The Remarkables - 19 June
- Treble Cone - 24 June
- Mt Dobson - 1 July
- Roundhill - 3 July
NZ ski fields gearing up for winter 2010
Winter’s first snows hit NZ mountains
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