1. There's more to this forum than meets the eye!

    We have a vibrant community here conversing about all sorts of non-snow topics such as music, sport, politics and technology. Simply register to reveal all our Après topics.

    NOTE: This notice may be closed.

    Dismiss Notice

Trip Report Wanaka 2014 edition

Discussion in 'New Zealand' started by Heinz, Aug 2, 2014.

  1. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    The 2014 edition of the long running annual Wanaka trip is now underway, this time off to a rather soggy start. Been raining in the region all day and warm. Haven't actually seen the mountains yet. First view from the plane once it got below the cloud flying into Queenstown was of lake Wakatipu. Then the usual sense of anticipation on the bus trip towards Wanaka getting the first glimpse of familiar peaks was also missing.
     
  2. Draizuh

    Draizuh One of Us

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2012
    Messages:
    1,988
    Likes Received:
    1,119
    Location:
    Wakatipu
    If the Avy risk calms down you will have fun tomorrow!
     
  3. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    No great expectations for tomorrow. It is just hopefully getting on the hill (TC closed for last 2 days) and getting ski legs back. Avi risk is pretty high at the moment at upper elevations from what I have read but hopefully settling later in the week.
     
    #3 Heinz, Aug 2, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2014
  4. ScottGN

    ScottGN One of Us Ski Pass: Gold Ski Pass: Silver

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2010
    Messages:
    2,864
    Likes Received:
    2,906
    Location:
    Tāmaki Makaurau - Auckland
    Looks like you'll have 20cm + of good old nor-west concrete to deal with in The Saddle. That'll get your legs back!
     
  5. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Yep, that did the job alright even though it was very busy up there today and Saddle only opened at 11:30.
    Very good day all considered.

    More details later.
     
  6. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Sun Aug 03 - Treble Cone

    A very good day all considered. If the temps had stayed high yesterday and the rain had continued it could have been disasterous, but fortunatly it cooled down and we got fresh snow on the upper part of the mountain. Was the busiest day I have seen here for quite some time largely as a result of several closed days as well as it being Sunday. But even so, I don't think I had to wait more than 10 mins any time.

    It is also the thinest cover I have seen for a while as well especially in the Main basin. They had done a very good job in keeping Main street in reasonable shape. Skied there mostly in the morning and wasn't too bad. Main issue was the amount of moisture in the air - snow/sleet flurries and generally misty so having to regularly pause briefly to wipe goggles to get vis. Did notice the ski patrol were busy with a few sleds in operation.

    Then the Saddle opened at 11:30. I got up there before the main crowds and from the chair up watched some of the hardcore freeride guys who would have queued up at the rope go hell for leather down the main chute despite some patches of sketchy cover. I was happy with a few considerably more sedate runs mostly down Cloud 9 and South ridge. As reported there was about 20cm of new snow - quite heavy though - certainly not powder but very welcome and very good skiing.

    Caught up with a few familiar faces on the hill. The mist from the morning had also mostly cleared and we even got the traditional 2pm clearance right on cue. Turned out to be a no lunch day - made do with a couple of chocolate bars. All considered a very good day.
     
  7. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Saddle chair
    [​IMG]

    Cloud 9
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Got the traditional 2pm clearance
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Main basin not looking so good outside of main street.
    [​IMG]
     
    #7 Heinz, Aug 3, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2014
    ODNT likes this.
  8. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Just saw on the NZ TV1 weather report they had a pic from the Saddle in the afternoon posted by Wanaka local Chris Riley (one of the familiar faces I caught up with).
     
  9. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Black peak from my balcony this morning. Looks like a nice day ...

    [​IMG]
     
    ODNT and Ziggy like this.
  10. JeffW

    JeffW Hard Yards

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2013
    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    0
    Nice Heinz. Looking forward to some vicarious holidaying. Have a Speights or three for me, mate. :cheers:
     
  11. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Did manage that last night - Was a big day so the Speights wheat beers went down alright.
     
  12. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Pretty awesome day yesterday and a long one, so no time for a proper report. Internet also sporadic.
     
  13. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Mon Aug 04 - North Harris

    Awesome day. Perfect clear, calm conditions. Could see through to Mt Cook. Headed out to the North Harris after guides had done a heli bombing run - one released on Fog. Tony took us initially to Niger to get started and we found very nice cruisy powder. Not deep - around 10-20cm but very consistent making for pretty easy skiing. The pack though was noticably shallow in parts - the thinnest pack and highest slowline I've seen here for a while. This meant our runs had to be somewhat shortened as we simply ran out of snow. Quality though was excellent and this was to continue for the rest of the day.

    Once everyone was in we then jumped over to Fog peak and stayed there for a while skiing several (5) variations. After a quick lunch, started looking elsewhere. Flew over Moonraker but the entrance to that looked very bony, so continued over to Rollercoaster where we found some more good stuff. Were able to get down to around 1400m, picking lines through the tussock, still very good skiing. The nice thing about that run lower down is that you only need a few cms to make if skiable. Had 3 runs in there.

    During that time Craig Royston also looked tempting so we then headed over there. Here we encountered the only hint of wind for the day, but the skiing was still brilliant. Would have been good to have another in there but at 4pm it was time to start making our way back. Dropped into Escapade in the shade and this was possibly even the best snow of the day, that demanded that we rerun it.

    Eventually made it off the mountain around 5pm.
     
  14. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    From Niger
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Looking towards Mt Aspiring
    [​IMG]
     
    tot, Bloke, tbnext and 2 others like this.
  15. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    From Fog peak
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    tot, Bloke, sara777 and 2 others like this.
  16. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    On Rollercoaster

    [​IMG]

    Looking towards Craig Royston
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    tot, Bloke, ScottGN and 1 other person like this.
  17. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    On Escapde

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    boarder tracks vs skier tracks
    [​IMG]
     
    tot, sara777, stuarth and 3 others like this.
  18. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Tue Aug 05 - North Buchanans

    Today was reasonably fine early but with quite a bit more cloud about and with the cloud & wind forecast to increase through the day. Mark therefore made the call to try and crank out our runs and have lunch back in the valley which is exactly the way it worked out.

    We flew into A trails in the North Buchanans - was quite windy on the ridge but still in the sun. Snow was very much the same as yesterday. Again though with the high snowline we were having to pick up somewhat higher than normal. No complants at all about the quality though. Dropped in at various points along the ridge for several runs on A trails all the while watching the clouds moving in from the north and west.

    Then finally did a couple on Moliefes on the valley side in the last of the sunshine around 1pm before flying back to base for lunch. Upon landing we looked back to see that the ridge we had been landing on was now covered in cloud so the timing was perfect.
     
    #18 Heinz, Aug 5, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2014
  19. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    A trails

    This slide was one triggered by yesterdays heli bombing run.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    tot, Bloke, sara777 and 3 others like this.
  20. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Moliefes (with dark clouds closing in)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    #20 Heinz, Aug 5, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2014
    Bloke likes this.
  21. absentskier

    absentskier Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2010
    Messages:
    26,764
    Likes Received:
    16,338
    Location:
    Melbourne
    Ridiculously good photos.
     
    ODNT likes this.
  22. MisterMxyzptlk

    MisterMxyzptlk Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2002
    Messages:
    27,556
    Likes Received:
    12,963
    ...for an Adelaide Crows supporter I guess;)
     
  23. socold

    socold A Local Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    May 5, 2008
    Messages:
    6,894
    Likes Received:
    2,080
    Location:
    Port Stephens
    its views like this that gets me back to NZ every year
     
  24. ODNT

    ODNT Part of the Furniture

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2010
    Messages:
    12,355
    Likes Received:
    1,286
    exceptional landscape & colours
     
  25. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    well yeah.. (probably good I was away last weekend). Would it have been better if I was a Norf supporter?
     
  26. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Just a matter in being in the right place at the right time.
     
  27. Untele-whippet

    Untele-whippet beard stroker Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2006
    Messages:
    17,675
    Likes Received:
    33,805
    Location:
    Blue Mtns, 1100M.
  28. ScottGN

    ScottGN One of Us Ski Pass: Gold Ski Pass: Silver

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2010
    Messages:
    2,864
    Likes Received:
    2,906
    Location:
    Tāmaki Makaurau - Auckland
    Me too.
     
  29. MisterMxyzptlk

    MisterMxyzptlk Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2002
    Messages:
    27,556
    Likes Received:
    12,963
    Not a bad team and I'm sure a North supporter could handle a Nikon
    On the other hand you could get with the strength and get on board the Suns train!
    Toot! Toot!
     
  30. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Another very good day today, other things to do now. Storm expected to come in so report likely tomorrow.
     
  31. Darb

    Darb Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    Messages:
    31,052
    Likes Received:
    10,710
    Location:
    Perth most of the time
    Just so you know , I'm sitting in my office, coffee in hand, tears streaming down my face at these photos.
     
  32. ScottGN

    ScottGN One of Us Ski Pass: Gold Ski Pass: Silver

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2010
    Messages:
    2,864
    Likes Received:
    2,906
    Location:
    Tāmaki Makaurau - Auckland
    Photos are great but also a pretty stark illustration of how high the snow line is this winter.
     
  33. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Your'e right. It is easily recognisable for someone who knows what a normal winter snowline here should look like.

    Stormy day today - raining and very windy in Wanaka so I'm not going anywhere. A bit of a return to winter so hoping that may change things for next week.
     
  34. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Wed Aug 06 - North Buchanans

    Around 10cms of new snow reported overnight with a bit of wind, so a fresh canvas to play with. Richard guiding today - was good to catch up on talk of Hokkaido after bumping into him in Asahidake in February. And Nigel was back flying after a stint in Indonesia.

    Was fine and clear early with a stormfront forecast for late afternoon, but time enough to get our day in. Plan was to head to sheltered bowls around Triple peak in the Buchanans. Started with a couple from the shoulder of Triple. The new snow had been packed just a little by the wind near the top of the run, so not quite a light as previous days, but still excellent. The good thing at this point was that there was very litte wind now.

    Then popped over to Boil the Billy for a few and a lunch stop. A couple on sunny aspects, best was a shadier line where it had stayed a bit colder.

    While landing on Boil the Billy we could see across to A trails ridge where we had skied yesterday and saw no sign of our tracks. So eventually we headed back that way and skied Moliefes on Matuki valley side again. Excellent conditions again, lower down again working the snow amongst the tussocks. Nice when you have a reasonable level of confidence that despite only having a few cms of snow it was on tussocks and not rocks, so made for fun skiing.
     
  35. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Was a bit slack in the morning - not many pics.

    One coming down from Triple peak.
    [​IMG]

    And a couple on Boil the Billy.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  36. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Took a few more on Moliefes later in the day.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    working the tussock - tree skiing kiwi style
    [​IMG]
     
    #36 Heinz, Aug 7, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2014
  37. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    More from Moliefes - clouds starting to move in
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Bloke, sara777, tbnext and 2 others like this.
  38. MisterMxyzptlk

    MisterMxyzptlk Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2002
    Messages:
    27,556
    Likes Received:
    12,963
    That second last shot is classic NZ heliskiing for mine
     
  39. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Initial front looks to have moved through, sun shining now in Wanaka. Mountains were also briefly visible but now again enveloped in cloud.
     
  40. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Monday was a big day for HMH with ops out of Queenstown, Wanaka & Mt Cook including charters. Would have been a long night in planning but it all seemed to go pretty well, certainly from the group I was in (with Grom) as well as reports I heard from other groups. If you were one of those out there on Monday and didn't enjoy it, I really don't know what to say.

    http://www.heliski.co.nz/2014/08/115-client-10-helicopters-25-guides/
     
    Untele-whippet likes this.
  41. weerab

    weerab One of Us

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2009
    Messages:
    3,594
    Likes Received:
    1,022
    Location:
    Beautiful Altona Victoria
    Great pics, thanks very much. I was in Wanaka last November for my nieces wedding, fantastic place. It was bloody freezing with snow down to low levels, lots of dead lambs everywhere.
     
  42. TropicalPow

    TropicalPow One of Us

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2010
    Messages:
    2,799
    Likes Received:
    613
    Location:
    Townsville and SUN PEAKS
    Riley, he's an old mate of mine from my Bamfords days.
    What a great bloke. . Who woulda thought , small world
     
  43. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Yeah, I know Riles from the Bamford days as well. Usually manage to see him at TC each year - he is always there. Great character. Still skis alright as well ...
     
  44. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Today was a day of catching up with old acquaintances, a couple planned, some others by chance. I love this place.
     
  45. tbnext

    tbnext One of Us

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2008
    Messages:
    4,538
    Likes Received:
    221
    Great report Heinz, love your work.
     
  46. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    New snow overnight, winter conditions, game on!
     
  47. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Not really up for a full report on today right now (may have a bit to do with a session at the Lake bar). Was actually a bit of a surprise that we got out a all. It was snowing in Queenstown, but reasonably clear in Wanaka. Were able to get up to the Buchanans (Harris side was under cloud all day). First few runs we tried though were all quite wind affected, but we eventually found a run one ridge south that was good powder so had to give that another crack. But then when it started snowing and clouded over we bailed back to the valley and had lunch there. Was quite cold today with a fresh southerly blowing.
     
    #47 Heinz, Aug 8, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2014
  48. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    :D
     
    Draizuh likes this.
  49. JoeKing

    JoeKing Old n' Thrusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    Messages:
    24,309
    Likes Received:
    11,607
    Location:
    a galaxy far, far away.
    Great report.

    There are some rip-snorter reports floating around lately.

    Actually, I've decided when I grow up, I wanna have as much fun as you guys do. :whistle:
     
  50. Heinz

    Heinz Old n' Crusty Ski Pass: Gold

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    26,533
    Likes Received:
    10,684
    Location:
    Adelaide
    Brilliant day yesterday - powder, sunshine, no wind and we hammered Fog peak. Then a very nice dinner with friends in Hawea. First Tartiflette I have had since France last year. No time yet for a proper report - another day about to unfold - fine at the moment but another front expected later.