Patrick in New Zealand, Aug. 25 - Sept. 12, 2016

Resort and backcountry skiing and snowboarding anywhere in the southern hemisphere: New Zealand, Australia, South America, etc., including our famous reader-submitted No-Bull Snow Reports.

Patrick in New Zealand, Aug. 25 - Sept. 12, 2016

Postby Tony Crocker » Thu Sep 08, 2016 4:20 pm

We have been exchanging e-mails since Patrick first contemplated this trip in May. I thought about us going along as Liz has never skied there. But then I lost interest with the poor start in June/July. In late July North Island got some major storms and the Southern Lakes areas got enough snow to open most terrain.

Canterbury continues to suffer one of its worst ever seasons.
http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/312110/september-will-feel-like-summer-instead-of-spring wrote:
Waipara West in the north of Canterbury was tracking towards its second driest winter on record, with just 73mm of rain through to 28 August - only 43 percent of normal winter rainfall, Mr Noll said. "Places in Northern Canterbury, some spots have had only 40 to 60 percent of their normal rainfall so far in 2016 and these types of foehn winds will contribute to that. So it looks like in the next 15 days there's little in the way of rainfall for places that need it most."


I'm taking the liberty of posting some of Patrick's e-mail comments in the interest of timeliness.

Air Canada delayed the start to Patrick's trip.
Patrick, Aug. 23 wrote:Losing 24 hours...flight was delayed for 2hrs, enough to miss my Vancouver-Brisbane. Arrival on Aug 25 at 11:55pm. I already booked 2 night (26-27) near Whakapapa.


There was a favorable report on Epic from Turoa Aug. 25: http://www.epicski.com/t/146916/austral ... st_2010474

However the storm before Patrick's arrival was a mixed bag.
Patrick, Aug. 29 wrote:I'm on the ferry now. [crossing from North to South Island, TC]
Whakapapa received about 45cm mixed with rain. There were some pockets of soft snow, but also hard blue ice. The runs were firm.
Turoa: even firmer with even less soft pockets.


Patrick wisely bypassed the Canterbury drought in favor of touring down the east coast of South Island.
Patrick, Aug. 31 wrote:I skipped Abel Tasman, spent more time around Kaikura. Spent last night in Christchurch (I had to go to the car rental company in CC as they gave me only one snow chain in Auckland - found out going up to Whakapapa. Got refund and a set of chains), now I'm in Dunedin (initially planned on the tail end of my trip). Otago Peninsula then Milford Sound. Besides today and tomorrow, Saturday is the first without the mention of gale force winds or-and rain.

I'm not desperate to ski, too many things I want to see. I'm suppose to be tagging up with a French skier from various forums on Saturday.


Patrick, Sept. 1 wrote:Left Dunedin at 5pm. Now I'm next to Milford Sound in Te Anau. I'll go to MS tomorrow Sept 2 then sleep in Qtown. Skiing at Coronet w forum user or Remarks. It will depend on the forever changing forecast. I might do only one ski area in QT and Treble Cone...then checkout some club fields.


Patrick made it to Milford Sound Sept. 2 and met his ZoneSki contact at the Remarkables Sept. 3.
Patrick, Sept. 3 wrote:I did Milford Sound yesterday and Remarks today. Heavy rain and gale force winds expected tomorrow everywhere.
Milford: cloud level was probably 1200-1400m. There were waterfalls everywhere.

The next clear break in the weather is Tuesday. Monday calls for showers. I wasn't expected to stay in QT until then, the place I'm staying is fully book for tomorrow...day I check out.

Zone Ski TR and pics from Remarkables: http://www.zoneski.com/forum/topic/2224 ... mbre-2016/

Patrick, Sept. 4 wrote:Remarks: I did homeward bound and was picked up by the shuttle. I wanted to also do the Alta chutes, but it was late and my legs were done. [I had advised about Remarkables from my day there in 2006]

Cardrona vs Coronet: I met up with someone that writes for remontees-mecaniques.org (or something). Another globe trotter. He skied Coronet prior to my arrival and said it was ugly. We were suppose to go skiing together at Coronet yesterday, but he totally said it wasn't worth. I spoke to a few locals and pretty much everyone mentioned that Cardrona was a way better option right now.

Ohau would be a possible day trip from Wanaka.


I sent Patrick updates that weather was supposed to be mixed precip Sept. 4-5, clear Sept. 6, snow Sept. 7, clearing after that

Patrick, Sept. 6 wrote:Skiing and terrain at TC: One of the best Sept 6 skiing I've ever done. Sunny day, a gazillion pictures. Some aspect were frozen hard as it was -7c last night. TC is head above the rest of them in terrain I've seen so far in NZ.

The plan is snow tomorrow with high winds. I've already bought a discounted ticket for Cardrona (which was initially planned for yesterday afternoon after the rain).

Thursday: Ohau or Cardrona

Zone Ski TR and pics from Treble Cone: http://www.zoneski.com/forum/topic/2225 ... mbre-2016/

On the bad weather day Wednesday Patrick drove over Haast Pass to the West Coast glaciers.
Patrick, Sept. 7 wrote:I've done the walks at both glaciers and now I'm back in Wanaka. So the plan is Cardrona tomorrow then possibly Ohau on Friday towards Canterbury.

This is what I did from the other direction (Arthur's Pass) during a bad weather hiatus in 2010.

I suggested Patrick go back to Treble Cone after the expected new snow Wednesday
Patrick, Sept. 7 wrote:I have already committed to Cardrona with the 50% cost of the lift ticket deal I got from their office in QT.

Powder is going to be minimal tomorrow also. The terrain was frozen, only a few aspects soften up. I did a good sense of the terrain. No the Motatupu chutes were closed.


It didn't matter where Patrick skied Thursday because the bad weather lingered.
Patrick, Sept. 8 wrote:I didn't Cardrona... I just ski it. I wasn't planning to come back to Wanaka after skiing Ohau. Hoping to ski again Saturday and call it a month. Sunday would be to visit the beach of the east coast and get my things together for my early flight out of CC.

I won't type long, I'm at the Cardrona lodge. I had enough of skiing blind not knowing where the fall line is.


I recommended Patrick ski Treble Cone again Friday, but he'll probably hit the small Ohau area on his way north. On the weekend he plans to ski a day at Broken River to see at least one club field. Despite the bad season, Broken River is getting at least a foot of snow Sept. 7-8. I think Patrick's day there will be better than mine in July 2010.

Patrick leaves Christchurch early Sept. 12, Auckland Sept. 13 and Brisbane Sept. 14.
http://bestsnow.net
Ski Records
Season length: 21 months, Nov. 29, 2010 - July 2, 2012
Days in one year: 80 from Nov. 29, 2010 - Nov. 17, 2011
Season vertical: 1,610K in 2016-17
Season powder: 291K in 2011-12
User avatar
Tony Crocker
 
Posts: 9820
Joined: Thu Sep 23, 2004 10:37 am
Location: Avatar: Charlotte Bay, Antarctica 2011
Location: Glendale, California

Re: Patrick in New Zealand, Aug. 25 - Sept. 12, 2016

Postby jasoncapecod » Fri Sep 09, 2016 3:53 am

Hmm
Spend a billion dollars to ski in Aug/Sept , but ski a 500vrt hill on the cheap in the winter.. ](*,) :roll:
User avatar
jasoncapecod
 
Posts: 1126
Joined: Wed Jan 25, 2006 9:30 am
Location: NEW YORK

Re: Patrick in New Zealand, Aug. 25 - Sept. 12, 2016

Postby jamesdeluxe » Fri Sep 09, 2016 10:19 am

Good to see that Patrick caught up with Rodo AF. I've been following his exploits on Zoneski for a long time.

Patrick, is your plan to continue in perpetuity or to reach a goal like "ten years" and then call it a day? As my Italian grandfather used to say: "now that you've gotten THAT out of your system..."
:lol:
User avatar
jamesdeluxe
 
Posts: 3337
Joined: Mon Oct 04, 2004 3:19 pm
Location: South Orange, NJ

Re: Patrick in New Zealand, Aug. 25 - Sept. 12, 2016

Postby Patrick » Sat Sep 10, 2016 4:39 am

jasoncapecod wrote:Hmm
Spend a billion dollars to ski in Aug/Sept , but ski a 500vrt hill on the cheap in the winter.. ](*,) :roll:


It's not only about the skiing, it's the adventure.

PS. I've wanted to ski NZ since 1984. Happy to finally make it. I definitely love the country, so much to see. Plus there are a few ski areas that are on my bucket list.
Ski Mad World
A blog of MadPat's World: A History of Skiing Geography
http://madpatski.wordpress.com
User avatar
Patrick
 
Posts: 4729
Joined: Thu Sep 23, 2004 6:19 am
Location: The Great Trip 2006
Location: Ottawa, Ontario

Re: Patrick in New Zealand, Aug. 25 - Sept. 12, 2016

Postby Patrick » Sat Sep 10, 2016 4:44 am

jamesdeluxe wrote:Good to see that Patrick caught up with Rodo AF. I've been following his exploits on Zoneski for a long time.

Patrick, is your plan to continue in perpetuity or to reach a goal like "ten years" and then call it a day? As my Italian grandfather used to say: "now that you've gotten THAT out of your system..."
:lol:


The ten year milestone was last year, this was month 132. Rodo AF doesn't have a ski streak, but his travel exploits are in a league of his own. Not sure how many ski areas he's skied, but pretty sure he's well above 250 in numerous countries, from NZ to Iran, India to Australia, Russia to South Africa, etc

For example he's been to Chile earlier this summer.
Ski Mad World
A blog of MadPat's World: A History of Skiing Geography
http://madpatski.wordpress.com
User avatar
Patrick
 
Posts: 4729
Joined: Thu Sep 23, 2004 6:19 am
Location: The Great Trip 2006
Location: Ottawa, Ontario

Re: Patrick in New Zealand, Aug. 25 - Sept. 12, 2016

Postby Tony Crocker » Sat Sep 10, 2016 3:49 pm

Patrick does have the right attitude about New Zealand travel. I only skied 4 out of 14 days on my first trip in 1982, which featured an icy slide for life at Mt. Hutt my first day in NZ and a full ski day in pouring rain at Coronet Peak a week later, though also a blue sky 1 foot powder day on the Tasman Glacier in between. Nonetheless I love NZ and have been back 4x, finally scoring a consistently good ski trip in 2006.

In terms of skiing this has been a subpar year in NZ similar to my first two trips in 1982 and 1997. But if you head south and the skiing is mediocre, I'd much rather be in New Zealand than holed up in a mountain hotel in South America.

jasoncapecod wrote:Hmm
Spend a billion dollars to ski in Aug/Sept , but ski a 500vrt hill on the cheap in the winter.. ](*,) :roll:

#-o I'm not the only person to make this observation??? :lol:

Patrick, see if you can get RodoAF's ski area list. I'd like to compare notes. Is he from Quebec? Where does he ski during the northern winter? :stir:
http://bestsnow.net
Ski Records
Season length: 21 months, Nov. 29, 2010 - July 2, 2012
Days in one year: 80 from Nov. 29, 2010 - Nov. 17, 2011
Season vertical: 1,610K in 2016-17
Season powder: 291K in 2011-12
User avatar
Tony Crocker
 
Posts: 9820
Joined: Thu Sep 23, 2004 10:37 am
Location: Avatar: Charlotte Bay, Antarctica 2011
Location: Glendale, California

Re: Patrick in New Zealand, Aug. 25 - Sept. 12, 2016

Postby jamesdeluxe » Sat Sep 10, 2016 4:28 pm

Tony Crocker wrote:Patrick, see if you can get RodoAF's ski area list. I'd like to compare notes. Is he from Quebec?

He's French; I believe based in Paris and co-runs the website Remontées-Mécaniques -- more about ski lifts worldwide than you can shake a pole at. I'm sure Patrick has more info.
User avatar
jamesdeluxe
 
Posts: 3337
Joined: Mon Oct 04, 2004 3:19 pm
Location: South Orange, NJ

Re: Patrick in New Zealand, Aug. 25 - Sept. 12, 2016

Postby Tony Crocker » Sun Sep 11, 2016 12:23 pm

Patrick, Sept. 11 wrote:Ohau Friday: Some firm, some soft, some powder pockets if you were willing to hike the ridge. I believe a few US racers were training there.

Mt. Hutt Saturday: Busy. Everyone were on the easier groomers. Conditions were real firm, again able to find some soft stuff. More later.


Every report on this trip seems to be at least 3/4 hardpack, which we all know is no big deal to Patrick. Most of the new snow seems to be blowing away. It seems unlucky that there wasn't more sun softening in September. Both of my days at Mt. Hutt (1982, 2010) were similar.

I've seen more than my fair share of low tide conditions in NZ with advanced/expert terrain off-limits but in terms of surface conditions even those trips had a few highlights:
1982 had Tasman Glacier powder and widespread corn at Whakapapa
1997 had an empty powder afternoon at Coronet Peak after a pea soup foggy morning sent most people home. Surfaces were good in 1997 but coverage at Treble Cone was very thin, just a handful of skiable lines in Saddle Basin.
2010 had perfect corn on Big Mama at Porter's and a couple of hours of fresh but very heavy powder at Broken River.
http://bestsnow.net
Ski Records
Season length: 21 months, Nov. 29, 2010 - July 2, 2012
Days in one year: 80 from Nov. 29, 2010 - Nov. 17, 2011
Season vertical: 1,610K in 2016-17
Season powder: 291K in 2011-12
User avatar
Tony Crocker
 
Posts: 9820
Joined: Thu Sep 23, 2004 10:37 am
Location: Avatar: Charlotte Bay, Antarctica 2011
Location: Glendale, California

Re: Patrick in New Zealand, Aug. 25 - Sept. 12, 2016

Postby Patrick » Fri Sep 16, 2016 1:54 am

jamesdeluxe wrote:
Tony Crocker wrote:Patrick, see if you can get RodoAF's ski area list. I'd like to compare notes. Is he from Quebec?

He's French; I believe based in Paris and co-runs the website Remontées-Mécaniques -- more about ski lifts worldwide than you can shake a pole at. I'm sure Patrick has more info.


I don't believe he has a detailed list (I think he was asked before), but he once told me that he has skied in over 35 countries over all lift served ski continents (meaning no Antarctica).

Off the top of my head, I know he's skied Australia, New Zealand, Bolivia (the operator wasn't able to start the ropetow at Chacalcaya), Chile, Argentina, Morocco, South Africa, Korea, India, Iran, Emirates (Dubai), Netherlands (indoor), UK, Russia, Canada, US, France, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Italy, Albania (?), Japan, Norway, Sweden, Finland...

That doesn't include the semi-obvious places in Europe like Spain, Andorra, Liechenstein, Poland, Czech, Slovakia, Slovenia, Bosnia, Croatia, etc.
Ski Mad World
A blog of MadPat's World: A History of Skiing Geography
http://madpatski.wordpress.com
User avatar
Patrick
 
Posts: 4729
Joined: Thu Sep 23, 2004 6:19 am
Location: The Great Trip 2006
Location: Ottawa, Ontario


Return to Down Under

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests


All content herein copyright © 1999-2017 First Tracks!! Online Media

Forums Terms & Conditions of Use