INDEPENDENT NEWS

Mt Hutt ski area receives dumping of the white stuff

Published: Wed 15 Aug 2012 01:14 PM
15 August 2012
Mt Hutt ski area receives dumping of the white stuff
A winter snow storm has delivered close to a metre of snow at Canterbury’s Mt Hutt ski area which is now enjoying the best snow base in New Zealand.
Over the past two days Mt Hutt has received well over 73cm of new snow including 11cm last night (August 14) bringing the snow base to a total of 2metres at the summit and 1.9metres at the base.
“The mountain is covered wall-to-wall, top to bottom,” said Mt Hutt ski area manager James Mackenzie.
“With this amount of snow, conditions for our local and overseas visitors simply don’t get any better. Groomed snow conditions today are amazing and everyone who’s up here is having an absolute ball.
“We’ve had extra staff working day and night over the past two days on de-icing and snow clearing, after Monday’s snowfall combined with winds we saw snowdrifts up to 5m deep around the mountain and on the access road.
“It took us until yesterday afternoon (Tuesday) to get up the access road and arrive at the base building car park with a fresh crew to swap out the night crew and start lift and building clearing.
“The mountain’s been transformed into a real winter wonderland and the timing couldn’t be better. We’re still in mid-winter but a fall like this will ensure some sensational spring skiing well into September and October, perfect for our loyal local skiers and snowboarders and those on their annual ski holiday from Australia and elsewhere.”
Mr Mackenzie said weather conditions were forecast to be clear for the remainder of the week and said he was “thrilled” with the effort by his team to get the mountain open today.
“Our road crew worked around the clock to get the access road clear,” he said. “Safety is always our number one priority so our patrol team has been flat out doing avalanche control work in the Bluffs and on our ski area, because we all knew there were keen skiers and riders just champing at the bit to get up here for fresh powder and first tracks.
“Today’s a stunner and this weekend should be absolutely epic!”
The new snow has come at the perfect time for the introduction of Mt Hutt First Tracks -- available every weekend from this weekend (August 18) onwards at an introductory rate of $20 per adult and $10 per youth as an ‘add-on’ to a valid day pass or season pass.
Children on the Kids4Free 10 and under programme will need to purchase the add-on too. Existing mypass card holders can purchase the add-on product on-line at www.nzski.com or at Guest Services on the mountain.
Conditions permitting, the Summit 6 and Quad chairs will open at 8am over the weekend accessing groomed terrain, and Hubers Hutt will open by 8.15am selling coffee and cooked breakfast.
A chain hire or fitting service will not be available to First Tracks guests on the Mt Hutt access road, and guests will need to provide their own transport.
ENDS

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