Set within one of New Zealand’s favourite holiday resorts is a small club field that has much more to offer than just a wonderful day’s skiing.
Hanmer Springs ski field is only a 40 minute drive by car or shuttle bus from the Hanmer Springs Thermal Resort, New Zealand’s best alpine spa, and one of the South Islands main tourist attractions. Oh, the pure luxury of lying back in a hot mineral pool after an energetic day on the slopes. If you prefer après ski with attitude rather aqua therapy in the pool, Thrillseeker’s Gorge, just minutes away from the springs has top-line adrenalin action in jet boating, rafting and bungy jumping.
The ski field is situated in a high basin under Mt Patrick in the St James Range, with a high point of 1,770 metres and a skiable area of 52 hectares. The season runs from July to September, and the snow ratings are 10% beginner, 60% intermediate and 30% advanced. Access to the ski runs is by way of one of the longest poma lifts in New Zealand, and two rope tows, which run from dawn to dusk.
The groomed snow runs are suitable for skiers and boarders at all stages, but intermediates in particular will discover a mountain of fun on the ‘back run’ and the ‘virgin powder run’. There is great snowboarding too, with both natural and groomed half-pipe riding options. Ski hire and instruction is available, and there is a centrally heated day lodge for rest and relaxation between runs. On-field accommodation consists of family rooms and bunkrooms in the Robinson lodge, which is extremely good value. So is waking at dawn with snow right at your doorstep.
Hanmer Springs is a total holiday package. You have endless choices. At the ‘Springs’ you choose whatever combo you want – hot pools, rest, recreation, adventure or ‘skiing yer heart out’.