The early snowfall that blanketed Queenstown and surrounding areas last week created the opportunity for the snowshoeing season to start on June 1 as scheduled.
NZ Snowshoeing Operations Supervisor Sebastian Thomas said it was “a bit of a coup” that the first tracks put down in the snow this year were by snow-shoers.
“The guests and agents were almost as excited about the awesome early snow as us guides!” he said.
The first day of the NZ Snowshoeing calendar started strongly with two separate trips. One of the couples from the morning trip, Shiva Chunduru and Pavan Annapragada from Singapore, said they’d had “an amazing experience.”
“After reading about this on Trip Advisor we changed our plans and flew back to Queenstown, and it was well worth it.”
Stephen Langdale was on the afternoon trip with his wife Adele, visiting Queenstown from Brisbane.
“Adele has never seen snow so we were really pleased to have extended our stay to do this trip,” he said. “The guides were great and we really enjoyed the banter and sense of camaraderie!”
NZ Snowshoeing believes ‘If you can walk, you can snowshoe’. The adventure is led by a knowledgeable guide who provides clients with specialist equipment.
Operations Supervisor Sebastian Thomas said the days of tennis racket-style snowshoes were “long gone”.
“In their place are small, lightweight and slimline snowshoes made from high tech materials, which let you feel as if you’re floating across the snow.
“They’re really easy to use. Anybody with a moderate level of fitness can enjoy a trip and enjoy our unique sense of intrepid exploration.”
NZ Snowshoeing offers half and full day trips and if clients prefer more remote locations a heli-snowshoeing trip is also available. The season will run for as long as there is snow. Trips start from $147 per person.
Ngāi Tahu Tourism acquired NZ Snowshoeing on 1 April 2015 together with Guided Walks New Zealand.