Picture a mountain with perfectly groomed snow slopes and state-of-the-art terrain park within a magnificent setting. Enthusiastic snowboarders are ripping it up as outdoor amplifiers crank out hip-hop music across the park. What a blast!
Snowboarding is one of the world’s fastest growing thrill sports. It all began in 1964 when an American bolted two skis together as a novelty for his kids. In 1994 snowboarding became an Olympic sport and it has gained in popularity ever since.
New Zealand ski fields have responded well to the demand by installing extensive terrain parks with massive groomed half pipes and a variety of ramps and obstacles. The June to October season entices many keen boarders to our slopes during the Northern Hemisphere off-season. Our Southern Lakes ski fields near Queenstown and Wanaka are particularly user-friendly for snowboarders. Cardrona holds the New Zealand Open Half-Pipe Competition, which attracts many overseas boarders. Competitors get some serious air with somersaults and twists thrown into the mix. Treble Cone is perfect for intermediate or advanced boarders with great half pipes and lifts that reach the top of the mountain in six minutes. Coronet Peak is a snowboarder’s paradise with consistent gradients and many undulations on the slopes and is minutes away from Queenstown. The Remarkables has great facilities including one of New Zealand’s longest sweeping runs called Homeward Bound. Whakapapa and Turoa on Mt Ruapehu in the North Island are our largest and most popular fields and offer great boarding facilities. Lift passes on all the commercial fields are generally around $50-60 per day and a snowboard and boots can be hired for a similar daily rate.
New Zealand ski fields offer a great variety in terrain, so you will never run out of challenges to go faster downhill, higher on the half-pipe and more daring on the ramps.
So grab a board and ‘go to the max’!