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Best month for Heli in Wanaka

Discussion in 'New Zealand' started by Scot_e17, Mar 8, 2019.

  1. Scot_e17

    Scot_e17 Hard Yards

    May 17, 2017
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    Planning a Jul/Aug or Sept NZ trip this year and planning to getting in a day of heli. Would love to hear suggestions of the best time to go to give us a good chance of a clear heli day. Any suggestions of heli companies in/ around Wanaka appreciated.
  2. Legs Akimbo

    Legs Akimbo Grumblebum Ski Pass: Gold

    Jan 17, 2014
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    Coastal suburban boonies.
  3. Red_switch

    Red_switch Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: 30 Day

    Jun 5, 2006
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    Dunedin, NZ
  4. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Oct 14, 2005
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    Short answer: August & Harris Mountains Heliski

    August is prime time and always has some good powder days but is the busiest time, so you normally need to book in a couple of days in advance. July is a bit hit and miss, last season was excellent, but other times the snow comes in a bit late so can be scratchy. September can be very good also, still get some good powder days, but is generally warmer so doesn't hang around as long, but you can get some very nice corn skiing. It is also quieter then so easy to book on.

    Whenever you go allow yourself at least a week and check in with the operator when you arrive and get on the books so when it is good you are good to go. Weather can be quite fickle in NZ and can change quickly, so grab your chance when you can. Usually they can fly around 5 days a week but often half of those may involve waiting for weather to clear or bailing early before an incoming front.

    As for companies the 2 big players down in Wanaka/Queenstown region are Harris Mountains and Southern Lakes. You can't go wrong with HMH but I am a little biased having had over 200 days with them. From all reports Southern Lakes are also very good, though I'm a bit wary of some of their advertising claims.

    I am always in Wanaka for the first 2 weeks of August skiing with HMH.
    For an idea of what conditions you might get then have a look here:
    Zeroz, Scot_e17 and piolet like this.