Skifield starting season today with ‘quite a bit of vertical’

And they’re off.

Coronet Peak will start operating two chairlifts from 9am today, heralding the start of its winter season.

It was initially scheduled to open last Saturday, along with The Remarkables and Cardrona Alpine Resort, but NZSki decided to hold it back.


Ski area manager Nigel Kerr said Coronet Express, Meadows Express and three carpet lifts would be operational from today, providing "quite a bit of vertical" for skiers and snowboarders keen to enjoy "early season conditions".

While the skifield was still waiting to benefit from any major snowfall, it had received timely top-ups which, coupled with snowmaking, meant crews had been able to build the base, he said.

In contrast to the "awful, humid, damp easterly" which came roaring in last week,

a "smidgen of cold and dryness" was forecast into tomorrow, which they would take advantage of, and a cold snap was predicted for Saturday before another easterly shift.

"We need the easterlies to [go away] and get back to this westerly airstream which we so love — that might take a week or two, but why not have some skiing until then?"

He expected the mountain to ski well.

"I think people are really going to love the fact they’re going to get a good, long run

... It’s going to spread people out and give them some playtime."

Cardrona skifield yesterday morning. PHOTO: SUPPLIED
Cardrona skifield yesterday morning. PHOTO: SUPPLIED
Over the hill at Cardrona, snow has been falling and the season has got off to a good start.

Cardrona and Treble Cone general manager Laura Hedley said the first three days of Cardrona’s 2024 season had featured a great turnout from locals and visitors who had been reassured by several successive snow dumps on the range.

"Each night we’ve had a wee top-up of natural snow, with snowguns fired up when conditions allow, which has meant we’ve had great snow on-trail for everyone to enjoy."

Cardrona’s own snow report said the resort had received 8cm of snow overnight on Sunday and a snow base of 22cm at 1800m.

Treble Cone is set to open on June 29.