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SNOW CLOUDS VISIT NZ & OZ - Katie Bamber, Senior News Reporter
Friday June 15, 2018 - Email this article to a friend

The snow is coming down in New Zealand & Oz that's bringing in the crowds, but avalanche risk is high. V. close call at Mt Ruapehu: UPDATED



An avalanche that hit two weeks ago on Mt Ruapehu in New Zealand took down a pylon.

And it looks like the main Turoa lift will be down for the rest of the season.

Despite the huge break, no one was injured, which is the best news.

The avalanche was said to be big enough to destroy a small town.

A snow plough was carried away in the snowslip.

Two young men narrowly escaped the avalanche.

They had driven the snowcat and were looking at the upper slopes where they knew the avalanche team were detonating the area to make it safe.

The snowcat (pisten basher) drivers said they were not expecting it to be as big as it was - and quickly took shelter in the lift-station safe building.

The avalanche left a 700-metre debris field and carried the cat about 200m, writing it off.

We reported on the technicalities of the lift break on 1st August, which you can read more of here if that's your jam:
Avalanche damage - High Noon Express TuroaAvalanche damage - High Noon Express Turoa

Avalanche safety crews have been working incredibly hard this season as New Zealand has had a busy snow year.

More than 30 cm of snow has fallen in last 3 days at Mt Ruapehu, with around 25cm in 72 hours at the nearby North Island ski areas of Whakapapa and Turoa.

Turoa avalancheTuroa avalanche

Car parks are full in resorts across New Zealand as snow draws in drovesCar parks are full in resorts across New Zealand as snow draws in droves


On South Island, Cardona has had 12cm today.

It's been snow and sun during the last week and these riders have been making the most of it.


14cm has fallen today over in the Remarkables by Queenstown and avalanche control teams are at it to keep the mountain safe.

In Australia there's also fresh snow.

10cm in Perisher today with blue skies...

Perfect conditions if these hold out for our editor's visit in the coming weeks.

PerisherPerisher's fresh


We left the resorts of Down Under alone to enjoy their July skiing.

But as winter competitions kick off down under and we report on the sport, let's take a look at how the season's been going in Australia and New Zealand.

Little falls have layered up, leaving a reasonable snowbase for NZ resorts.

Last night blessed New Zealand's Treble Cone with 10cm of snow.

Take a look at this morning beauty in Treble:


If that's not heaven, then I don't know what is...

Morning glory indeed at CardronaMorning glory indeed at Cardron
















And a dusting overnight in Cardrona.

Dusting overnight

Check out news here of the ski racing already on in the Southern Hemisphere, as well as the best of what's to come in 18/19 in these resorts:



In our short week's hiatus, so much has happened over in New Zealand.

It's snowed for days, leaving half a metre in places (that's a real good drop for out there), and now the sun is out and it really does look ideal.

The Remarkables got some 44cm of fresh stuff:

RemarkablesThe Remarkables, New Zealand














After 25cm of fresh, it's right on time for opening day TOMORROW - 29th June - at the Mt Ruapehu, Whakapapa & Tūroa ski areas.

Mt Ruapehu, Whakapapa, Turoa25cms at Whakapapa
















Treble Cone pre-weekend storm, pre opening...Treble Cone pre-weekend storm, pre opening...















And post opening:












Powder in Cardrona after a snow filled weekend:

Cardrona's powderCardrona's powder





















Over in Australia there's been a lot of sun.

But guns are pumping to work on the coverage and these riders are having a blast...

Perisher, AustraliaPerisher, Australia














Hotham Alpine ResortHotham Alpine Resort













And... BIG news.

Skiing in the other Southern Hemisphere hotspot has really got going.

South America ski resorts have had a dump and here's how some of the big Argentina ones are looking.

Cerro Castor is ready for opening tomorrow:

Cerro Castor in Argentina is set to open tomorrow, 29th JuneCerro Castor in Argentina is set to open tomorrow, 29th June

Cerro Castor Cerro Castor

Argentina's Chapelco opened its lifts last Saturday, 23rd June:

Chapelco, ArgentinaChapelco, Argentina

Check back in for more soon - we're snow-photo binging...


'BEST CONDITIONS SINCE 2000' - Cold snap in Oz means machines are pumping, topping up the snow Stormin' Normin brought.

Australia doesn't have the same kind of season we know of and expect in the Alps (however much we like to moan about our no-snow winters).

The mountains are lower and snowfall totals are a fraction of what Zermatt, say, gets.

BUT this year there is snow and temperatures are cold enough to have snow machines switched on to get that perfect mix.

It's claiming to be the best start since the Millennium.

80cm since this time last week in Perisher means the resort and riders are stoked.
















Even more in Hotham:

Hotham Alpine Resort has had more than 1mHotham Alpine Resort has had more than 1m













And the Aussie enthusiasm is certainly there over in Falls Creek:

"The Sun is out, we have an epic cover of fresh snow, more lifts are planned to open this week and we just cant stop smiling," the resort writes on its Facebook page.

I know, I know - pics and PR are working magic on us.

We might just have to get ourselves out there...

And in New Zealand there's been dustings and top ups of snow since the early season fall.

Mt Hutt had a pretty special day yesterday:

"New snow and a snowbow..... What an afternoon of freshes we are having!"

Mt HuttMt Hutt, New Zealand













SnowbowMt Hutt














Some sneaky sunshine in Perisher, Australia after 6 days of storm:

And across the ditch in New Zealand, Falls Creek has reported sun after a fresh dusting:

Falls CreekFalls Creek

















After many big-name resorts opened in Australia last weekend, the snow arrived.

They called it Stormin' Norman, the bout of colder temps, wind and snow.

Over 80cm of white stuff was recorded on Monday in Perisher since before the weekend:

Fellow New South Wales resort, Thredbo, had some happy riders.

Stormin' Norm brought 85cm of total:

Thredbo snow stokeThredbo snow stoke















ThredboMore stoke at Thredbo















And near the Victoria resorts, Hotham did good, as well...

Hotham with 95cm storm totalHotham with 95cm storm total













And take a look at Falls Creek's Sunday ski day:

Monday morning severe weather warnings were issued for parts of New South Wales.

Strong gusty winds with cold temperatures and showers were forecast down in cities and at the coast.

Damaging winds averaging 37mph are predicted at low altitude with peak gusts of more than 55mph.

The cold snap, with temps down to freezing in cities, means snow machines in resorts can get pumping.

Here we go...

Big New Zealand resorts hosted school day, with locals and kiddos taking to the mountain Sunday.

The Remarkables resort offered skiing and riding for just $20 - The Icebar was open, fresh snow, barbie and beer:

The RemarkablesThe Remarkables















Treble Cone is working its mountain men and women hard to open early on 23rd June.

Coronet Peak schools' dayCoronet Peak schools' day
















Further resorts across Australia and New Zealand are opening this weekend.

Snow is finally falling in OZ after NZ saw the snow earlier this month.

In New Zealand Coronet Peak and Cardrona have opened this weekend, while over in Australia the resort of Thredbo has fired up its first lifts.

Other resorts might open depending on the snow conditions and here at PlanetSKI we'll keep you posted.

Perisher in Australia opened on 7th June, but conditions were far from ideal.

Not any more.

Up to 50cm of snow has fallen according to the resort.

Perisher, AustraliaPerisher, Australia















Perisher, AustraliaPerisher, Australia














Perisher, AustraliaPerisher, Australia















Our reporter, Alex Cove, is heading to the resort this week where he will be working as a ski instructor for the winter and will be covering all things from Australia for PlanetSKI.

And here is the opening of Thredbo in Australia.

High Fives all round:

Thredbo, AustraliaThredbo, Australia
















Thredbo, AustraliaThredbo, Australia















New Zealand has had the better start with good levels of snow.

Here were the final preparations at Coronet Peak ahead of its opening on Saturday, June 16th.

The Remarkables and Mt Hutt are already open.

"This is the best opening we've had for years," said the Mt Hutt area manager James McKenzie as the resort opened earlier this month.

See here for our rolling blog of the snow across Australia and New Zealand that we have been updating over the past couple of weeks:

Mt Hutt, New ZealandMt Hutt, New Zealand















This year at PlanetSKI we are keeping an extra sharp eye on the snow in Australia and New Zealand.


We're heading there in August, September and October for some skiing Down Under.

It's our first visit and to say we're looking forward to it is somewhat of an understatement.

See the link below for a full PlanetSKI review of the ski areas in Australia and New Zealand.

Fly south for the summer

We will be updating this article across the weekend so do check back...

It's always snowing somewhere!

See here for the main PlanetSKI news page with all the latest stories from the mountains.

For the Spirit of the Mountains - PlanetSKI: Number 1 for ski news

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