Early season snow has come to the party as fresh flakes fall over Queenstown, setting up skiers and snowboarders at Coronet Peak for a few days of “epic” powder.
The ski area opened for business last weekend and by lunchtime today (Thursday June 18) has received a fresh snow dump of 40cms.
Snow continues to fall with reduced intensity, forming drifts of up to 1m deep on the upper mountain. Snow chains are currently essential on the access road although the majority of the snow has now been cleared and grit trucks are keeping up with the new snow.
Ski area manager Ross Copland said extra care and caution was needed for drivers heading up the mountain and powder seekers are advised to check www.nzski.com for the latest road conditions.
“Snow continues to fall so snow chains are required on all vehicles heading up,” he said.
“Our friendly staff will assist you with chain fitting, please drive to the conditions and take care.
“This is shaping up to be the biggest single dump we’ve had since 2010. At peak intensity 5cm per hour was dumping on us this morning. Conditions on the mountain are incredible, all trails are blanketed in a deep layer of light dry powder”.
Happy skiers father Matthew Manton and son Jack (7) enjoy the fresh snow at Coronet Peak_media
The beginner’s lifts, Coronet Express and Meadows chairlifts are all operating, opening up much of the mountain to wall-to-wall powder. Greengates and Rocky Gully lifts both open on Saturday with untracked powder to look forward to for early birds. The Icebar and Heidi’s Hut also open for the season on Saturday.
Even more snow is predicted for Queenstown over the next few days.
Coronet Peak’s the place to be this weekend as it plays host to the American Express Queenstown Winter Festival.
“The snow timing couldn’t be more perfect. We’re thrilled that Coronet Peak is in fine shape for guests to enjoy great conditions and awesome powder.
“We’re not even one week into the season and it’s been an incredible start so far.”
A huge drawcard on Saturday is the ‘Jack Links Mountain Bikes on Snow’, guaranteeing thrills and spills on the snow and a great spectator event.
“There’ll be some nice big deep pockets of snow for those crazy guys and girls on mountain bikes to contend with.”