The Snow Gauge

Running the rule over the ski & snowboard industry since 1995

New Zealand: frustrating as all hell

Posted by on Sep 8, 2016

The Remarkables

Remarkable – just not open, that’s all. Pic: The Remarkables Facebook

If you ever needed a torchlight shone on the best and worst thing about skiing or snowboarding in New Zealand, mark September 8 down as Exhibit A.

Almost two feet of fresh snow. Superb mountains. A picture perfect place to base yourself in like Queenstown.

And the resort that is supposed to take you to heaven?

It’s closed.

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Top five places to ride RIGHT NOW

Posted by on Sep 7, 2016

Portillo Lake Run

Anthony Sharwood doing some spring preparation on the Lake Run, Portillo. Pic: Glenn Cullen

September and October don’t have to be no-man’s (or woman’s) land for skiers and snowboarders looking for somewhere to ride.

These are my top five resorts to ride around the globe that will be rocking for another three to seven weeks so there’s plenty of time to get you fill before the northern hemisphere winter starts.

All resorts listed are based on current conditions and my first hand experience, well except for one place I haven’t got to quite yet …

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NZ snow season prediction: don’t pack yet

Posted by on May 13, 2016

Jamie Anderson

Jamie Anderson getting the goods in the Thompsons Range near Queenstown, NZ. Pic: Dan Himbrechts.


Booked to go across the ditch this season or considering heading to the Shaky Isles? Well then, you better read The Snow Gauge interview with the NZ Metservice and the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) about what’s in store for the snow season.

Key points:

  • It’s bloody warm over there at the moment folks!
  • Like Australia, don’t expect too much early
  • Treble Cone could ultimately benefit most from the prevailing conditions
  • Snow levels could be a bit dicey this year
  • Ruapehu might struggle early 

Last season was an absolute cracker in New Zealand. The snow started coming in May, there were consistent storms and there was plenty of the white stuff around well into spring.

I fondly recall skiing top to bottom at Mt Ruapehu, second week of October, thanks very much.

The thing is this year it has been very warm and while the Metservice and NIWA don’t like to go nuts with their predictions this far out, let’s just say the suggestions are this may not exactly be a repeat of 2015.

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Ski instructor’s amazing survival tale still inspires

Posted by on Jun 26, 2015

I frequently forget to put out the garbage. One time I took my dog for a walk down to the shops and left him tied there for three hours, absentmindedly bring a few groceries home but not poor ‘ol Rex. I couldn’t, as my father said, hammer a nail into butter.

Yet I remember eating my first pie at Jindabyne’s Sundance Bakery; almost wetting my pants watching a guy helplessly scour the steep slopes of Aspen Highlands with a metal detector looking for a set of lost keys – and my first day’s skiing at Treble Cone.

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New Zealand season underway – choice

Posted by on Jun 13, 2015

Coronet Peak and Mt Hutt got bragging rights for the first Kiwi resorts open in 2015, and for a first day it wasn’t half bad, particularly down south.

Cardrona didn’t make the starting gate unfortunately, with high winds preventing the Wanaka gem from opening today. It’s slated to operate on Sunday with winds predicted to ease.

The Snow Gauge stands by his call however that Cardies will be the place to be once it gets going; and Treble Cone when it follows on June 25.

The storms keeping rolling in, hooking up the spine of the South Island and there’s more of the white stuff on the way next week, our friend The Frog at Snowatch calling for a nice top up of up to 12cm on Monday.

Check out The Snow Gauge’s weekly column appearing from AAP  via Yahoo7: there’s even some nudity clickbait for you to read about.



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