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TRAVEL & LEISURE

New Zealand Ski Fields Could Be Open from Early June

Resorts across the country are starting to roll out plans for the post-coronavirus season. 
By Stephen Heard
May 14, 2020
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New Zealand Ski Fields Could Be Open from Early June

Resorts across the country are starting to roll out plans for the post-coronavirus season. 
By Stephen Heard
May 14, 2020
  shares

In line with New Zealand's move to Alert Level 2, local thrill-seekers could be hitting the slopes from early June, as ski fields across the country roll out plans for the post-coronavirus season.

Queenstown fields Coronet Peak and The Remarkables and Canterbury's Mount Hutt have all announced they will be up and running for winter, though details about how they will operate under the new alert level are still yet to be confirmed. NZ Ski CEO Paul Anderson revealed that the organisation is working with the Government on how to implement physical distancing and gatherings, contact tracing and hygiene.

Mt Hutt is set to be the first to open from early to mid-June, though it will start the season by only operating three days a week. From 1 July, it will open for the five best weather days of the week to give visitors more certainty on opening days.

Coronet Peak will be open from the end of June, just a couple of weeks later than scheduled as the mountain team catches up on maintenance. The ski field plans to have its early morning session and after-hours ski nights running. Fellow Queenstown favourite The Remarkables will be open daily from the start of July in time for the school holidays. Following, it will operate across weekends at a minimum.

Cardrona Alpine Resort hasn't yet revealed when you can have a go on its Olympic-sized superpipe in 2020, but the field's website mentions it is aiming for an end of June opening. While finer details are yet to be nutted out with the Government, General Manager Bridget Legnavsky has suggested that Cardrona and sibling ski field Treble Cone won't be able to have all lifts open at all times, will be able to contact trace with its lift pass system and is looking into protective gear.

For cross-country skiers and snow-shoers, Cardrona's Snow Farm is intending to open for the 2020 winter, though has not yet announced a timeframe. The largest ski area in the nation, Mt Ruapehu, is also yet to confirm when it will open for 2020. The alpine village says it is hopeful for the winter season, and projects are underway at both Turoa and Whakapapa in preparation for a potential opening when snowfall permits. With the usual season still seven to eight weeks away, the timing of the country's alert levels may bode well for skiers and snowboarders looking to access the mountain's natural pipes, steep chutes and vertical drop of 722 metres.

With borders still closed to international visitors, a dramatic fall in numbers is expected across all fields, and until the discussed trans-Tasman bubble is open it will be a domestic-only market. All ski field 2020 season plans are dependent on guidelines and expectations set out by the New Zealand Government.

We'll update you as new information around New Zealand ski fields comes to hand.

cp-line

Read more about COVID-19 Alert Level 2 here and head to the New Zealand Government's Ministry of Health website for the latest COVID-19 advice.

Published on May 14, 2020 by Stephen Heard

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