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NZ clubfields - few tips

Discussion in 'New Zealand' started by benjiboy, May 17, 2015.

  1. DPS Driver

    DPS Driver A Local

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    You don't need your own harness but if you feel comfortable in your own then why not. The glove yes or just use rigger gloves.
    If you want to tether your nut cracker to your harness a prusik would be more suitable.
     
  2. Red_switch

    Red_switch Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: 30 Day

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    Boot crampons and Ice Axe, massive yes, for the Craigieburns and pretty much everywhere in NZ. We have this thing called wind, it does gnarly things to ridgelines. Currently there is a decent rain crust in the craigieburns, wind is stripping all the snow off this on the ridgelines, making for very slick conditions.
     
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  3. DaveAC30

    DaveAC30 Hard Yards

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    Many years ago, I did a club and small commercial tour of some of the NZ (South Island)fields, though didn't get to all the available fields. For my money Porters and Mt Cheeseman were the best of the lot. Dobson was ok, but really didn't offer much of a challenge. Broken River was ok, but seriously the walk and climb up to the snow was a pain and reminded me of the walk to Mt Field (Mawson), down here in Tassie. Albeit of course with somewhat more snow. I still am yet to try out Craigieburn, Ohau, Olympus and Temple Basin. From what I have seen on youtube Ohau looks good, while Craigieburn is hugely challenging. Mind you I really hate rope tows, and yes riggers gloves are the go.

    But I have been trying to get my mates in a winter road - ski trip, but with little luck so far. Mostly skiing in NZ for me over the past 20 years has been Coronet Peak, Remarkables, Cardrona and Mt Hutt. Still need to get to have a ski at Treble Cone. At least there are plenty of choices over there, unlike back here !!
     
  4. Seth

    Seth Pool Room Ski Pass: Gold

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    Cheeseman after a few day at BR and Craigieburn is a let down. You obviously like t-bars.

    We went there on the last day and did about two runs and then went and sat in the sun at the lodge. It was not going to add anything to the trip.

    Craigeburn is king.
     
  5. sbm

    sbm One of Us

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    In 2009 BR upgraded their goods lift to carry people as well. If it all works out you apparently get a 4 minute ride on the "Tyndall Alpine Tramway". Sounds like a budget DIY Kiwi version of the Ski Tube, I can't wait.

    Conditions looking a bit miserable for the start of next week, howling wind and rain until monday, but hopefully a bit of a freshen up on tuesday and from wednesday onwards should be good fun.
     
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  6. ecowain

    ecowain One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Yes, the Tyndall Tramway is a work of art - way better than the Skitube. Love the single track, that has to fit 2 carts going in opposite directions :) It has made the trip up heaps quicker than it used to be, although the walk through the forest is nice - takes about 20 minutes (first part up the road to third zig, then walking track). There's a 5-10 minute stroll above the ticket office (top of tramway) to the bottom tow.

    Temple Basin's goods lift should never get upgraded to carry people. One trip there, one of the pylons collapsed, and we spent half the day searching through the tussocks for our skis and bags!

    Take care on the access roads.

    Does look a bit nasty early next week, hope it clears for you. Temple, BR, and Craigieburn should end up OK by Wednesday.

    Porters and Cheeseman is where I'll go when I have kids, until they are a bit more capable and able to be short-leashed on the tows (about 4 years of age according to locals).
     
  7. johnski

    johnski Hard Yards Ski Pass: Gold

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    Agree with that outlook. Im up in the clubbies from Sunday for a week -thinking positive thoughts will most likely be at craigieburn for most of the time depending on what the forecast does next couple of days.
     
  8. sbm

    sbm One of Us

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    Once again trawling through dark corners of obscure GPS forums, I have managed to set myself up with free colour topo maps of NZ for my garmin gps. I've managed this for Japan, Aus, and NZ now, and I'll do a blog post on how to do it one of these days.

    [​IMG]
     
  9. ecowain

    ecowain One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Cool. Be aware that the roads look wrong. In fact, from memory, the red lines are summer walking tracks, and I think that there are actually no roads marked.

    www.topomap.co.nz is accurate.
     
  10. sbm

    sbm One of Us

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    Actually I believe these maps include data scraped from that site. The red lines are definitely the walking tracks and are actually tagged as such. The BR road looks accurate, however the Craigieburn road isn't there at all.
     
  11. ecowain

    ecowain One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Just saw the very faint grey line :)
     
  12. sbm

    sbm One of Us

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    But thanks for the heads up @ecowain . I'll take care using the GPS.
     
  13. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Yeah BR has a tram up - it's a bit rickety !! My wife really struggled on be rope tow on the board.

    I took my own harness and it worked well. As the others say buy rigger gloves from Bunnings or somewhere. Rope rows will kill your gloves.

    Unfortunately craigieburn rained out when we were there.

    There is a great pub at the bottom between BR and craigieburn - I stayed there, good food and a decent bed. And a nice fire to sit beside.

    When we got to craigieburn we didn't arrive until 8pm and then got a telling off by the kitchen nazi for not helping out with dinner prep, so not keen to ever stay there again.
     
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  14. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Oh and at BR there is a great day centre at the bottom of the runs (need a rope tow to get there).

    My wife was told by the lifetie "there is Big deck up there for you". With his kiwi accent she thought it was something else and was sadly disappointed when she made it up :)
     
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  15. Myazma

    Myazma One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    I've had some great times on that big deck, just saying
     
  16. Andy Breaking Trail

    Andy Breaking Trail Early Days

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    Craigie is the best resort in Sothern Hemisphere
     
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  17. benjiboy

    benjiboy Hard Yards

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    Alright thanks for all the advice guys - figure I'll give a rundown of my trip and thoughts.
    - I went straight to Craigieburn and stayed there the whole time. Got 2 days rained out where I wouldn't have skied elsewhere anyway, but I can see the benefits of having wheels there (I took Smilies shuttle). Craigieburn seemed pretty convenient compared to BR and Temple - able to drive up to the lodge.
    - Stayed in the bunk rooms and scored a room to myself the entire time. Most of the time there were only a few other guests in the whole lodge, with a maximum of 20 one night.
    - Got what you would call "average" conditions for the week. Aside from the 2 rain days it was good surface conditions the whole time. Didn't get a proper pow day, but 10cm with no wind on top of a super (rain washed) based smooth base was really nice. In general it was always easy to get an edge in.
    - Was really impressed with the endless terrain and just how steep the whole field is. Can see it is really a field for advanced skiers. If surface conditions weren't so good I would have found it tough skiing most of it. Could do with some better steeps technique for sure...
    - Nutcrackers are tiring, but just took a couple of tries to get the hang of it.
    - Witnessed the inbounds (grade 3 slide) from the day lodge. Given this was a low-moderate avi day and inbounds this really put things in perspective. I'd just skied the Hamilton face for two runs an hour earlier so was fortunate to not get caught. Also quite funny that Hamilton is marked as a blue run.... They are really struggling to show a bit of diversity of run difficulty on the trail map....
    - Good to get some skiing in with Johnski and his brother as well as hear some good tales of the other skiing options around :)
    - All in all I definitely have the club field bug and want to head back next year, hopefully in August. Not too many places you can get good conditions and have more staff than guests on the field (5) for an entire day.

    I'd definitely recommend to hit it up if you are an adventurous type skier.
     
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  18. sbm

    sbm One of Us

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    I have mine haha. I'll post it eventually. One thing that no-one mentioned here was you need straps on your poles so you can have both hands free. Like all sensible skiers I cut mine off my ancient dumpster poles years ago and this is the first time I've ever wished I had them. Me and my dad worked out how to tuck the poles under the tow belt and it worked but it's a hassle.

    I bought 2 pairs of basic leather gloves from bunnings for $17, and emptied a whole can of Kiwi leather waterproofing spray into them, which may or may not of helped. I ended up just wearing the leather gloves by themselves as it never got that cold.

    For me it was about halfway through the second day when it clicked. Went from "This is the most difficult and dangerous thing I have ever done on skis BANG who in their right $%#$ mind thought it was a good idea to ski this close to moving machinery BANG oh god my fingers BANG aaaaaaaah" to "Bust lufts in the world brah!"

    I will say that for me, especially coming from a uni club background of chaotic volunteer-run big trips, the NZ club fields suit me perfectly, I had an amazing time and loved every minute of it, was convinced I had found Valhalla just like in the ski film, and I am dead set on joining one just as soon as I figure out which one.

    But yes, I heard I had inspired a friend, whose skiing skills are from a nordic background and progressing nicely from beginner to intermediate, to do a ski week at Craigieburn of all places this year. My reaction was "You're going to come back an exceptional telemarker...or badly injured". For better or worse the trip happened.
     
  19. sbm

    sbm One of Us

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    Also I never saw a boarder successfully ride heelside. The boarders who have success on the nutcrackers ride switch if necessary so they're always toeside.
     
  20. smackies

    smackies A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    I was at BR last weekend. Backside on the tow was certainly a bit of a struggle the first couple of attempts.

    Biggest issue for me was thrusting in the direction of success (i.e. Away from the tow) whenever going past the pulleys. Copped quite a few impacts.
     
  21. sbm

    sbm One of Us

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    First run of day 2 at Broken River. Nutcracker ride + freshies.

     
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  22. Ziggy

    Ziggy A Local Ski Pass: Gold

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    Cool.
    & as you get more confident you can start laying the rope back on the pulley.
     
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  23. Dave6

    Dave6 One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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  24. DPS Driver

    DPS Driver A Local

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  25. Myazma

    Myazma One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    It's more about wrist strength, start pumping those hand spring thingies. Harness is somewhere to put the nutcracker.
     
  26. sbm_

    sbm_ One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    The rock climber in me cringes at the sight of that $14 harness - no way in hell would I go near a cliff with that - but yeah it would be safe for nutcrackers. What you get with a fully-fledged ~$150 climbing harness, aside from rated and tested safety, is padded comfort and convenience for climbers that are wearing them and hanging in them all day every day. If you go to an outdoors store they'll have a rope hanging from the roof for you to try harnesses on and dangle in the air and pick the most comfortable one, and they will have a single cinch buckle and elastic, instead of 3 or 4 fiddly buckles that need to each be re-threaded, so they're a lot faster to take on and off.

    Anyway. Are you also planing to buy your own nutcracker? I'd say it's not really worth getting a harness unless you're also going to buy a nutcracker to permantly attach to it. Otherwise as Gimp says. just grab a big leather towbelt from the club field you're at. Even arguably more comfortable than a cheap tape harness.
     
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  27. sbm_

    sbm_ One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Climbing Anchors has much nicer looking Black Diamond Momentum harnesses for $90. That clunky thing Gnomes is selling is a rip off.
     
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  28. Dave6

    Dave6 One of Us Ski Pass: Silver

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    Yeah, I'm looking at getting my own nutcracker as well. I used both a belt and a harness last year and found the harness to be better although that could have been something to do with the bent and twisted nutcracker that I was trying to use with the belt. Not sure what the harness was, but I don't think it was anything special.


    .
     
  29. Myazma

    Myazma One of Us Ski Pass: Gold

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    Get a custom fit one from Chill in CHC.
     
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