When we visited Queensland, New Zealand, we missed the end of the ski season by only 1 day. And they wouldn’t fire up the lifts for a couple late Americans. Oh well!
If you’re in New Zealand or Australia for their new ski season just beginning, be sure to check out their ski resorts.
Here’s a nice compilation by On The Snow.
Coronet Peak is the most popular ski resort on the South Island of New Zealand, in part due to its proximity to Queenstown—20 minutes away. From the summit, look left to see Gondor from the movie, The Lord of the Rings. The varied terrain offers something for everyone: beginners and intermediates have wide blue and red runs, while more advanced skiers can hit the terrain park or test their stamina on the longest run, the “M-1,” stretching 2.4 kilometers (1.5 miles). The resort is known for its efficient high-speed chairlifts. The peak is one of the last ski fields to lose its snow, hence the season typically runs from early June to mid October.
When to go: Early June to mid October
Terrain: 690 acres: beginners 25 percent, intermediates 45 percent, advanced 30 percent (includes back bowls)
Lifts: One high-speed six seater, two express quads, one T-Bar and four surface conveyor lifts
Longest run: M1—1.5 miles
Après ski: Fully-licensed restaurant plus bar and cafe with sun deck at the sub-station.
Resort facilities: Snowsports school, ski and snowboard rental shop, ski retail outlet, licensed day care center and children’s programs, first aid and emergency services.
Ski pass prices: Daily lift tickets cost $97 (NZD)
Transportation: Snowline Express costs $15 and return from Queenstown Snow Centre, departs every 20 minutes during peak times with pick-ups at designated stops where space is available. Snowline Hotel Pick is $30 (Adult), $20 (Youth 17 & under) per person for a return trip. Prebook your seat by 9 p.m. the night before. Pick-ups from designated Queenstown accommodation providers.
For the top four resorts in Australia and New Zealand, see their report.