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Plans for winter skiing at Lake Wanaka's ski fields promise another great season in 2010

Victoria Murray-Orr - 26/03/2010

In November 2009 the most recent figures from Statistics New Zealand showed that Lake Wanaka's winter season from 1 July to 30 September 2009 was the most successful on record with a substantial increase on 2008 in visitor numbers and guest nights. Visitor numbers were up 17.8% with Australian visitors contributing significantly to the increase and guest nights were up 14%.

Lake Wanaka township under a blanket of snow
Lake Wanaka township under a blanket of snow
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Following on this good news Treble Cone has announced new initiatives for the 2010 winter season
An international standard big air and an extension of its ski improvement programme are just two of the new initiatives announced by Treble Cone Ski Area as it gears up for the 2010 winter season.

A site in the Main Basin has been identified for a permanent big air kicker, built to FIS (Federation International de Ski) specifications. The purpose-built feature will complement the natural freeride terrain Treble Cone is renowned for and provide a spectacular venue for international standard Big Air competition overlooking the famous Treble Cone view. Its location within sight of the main six-seater express chairlift allows all mountain-goers to enjoy the spectacle.

Ski Achievement products
Treble Cone has a strong focus on high-end improvement and for 2010 it has extended its Ski Achievement products to cover eight weeks from mid-July to mid-September.

Women-specific ski weeks at Treble Cone
Courses include two dedicated Women's Ski Weeks, designed by women for women and aimed at the intermediate to advanced skiers and boarders wanting to move to the next level.

Ladies' Ski Week is the ultimate programme for those wanting to improve their skiing or snowboarding skills. The course features Treble Cone's top female instructors with small groups of similar abilities to ensure individual attention, all in the spectacular location of Lake Wanaka.

Groups will learn the latest ski and snowboard techniques specific for women and gain a stronger ability both on and off piste. You'll learn all about the latest women-specific ski equipment and explore the whole mountain while improving in confidence and having fun with new friends. Video analysis is also provided so you can watch your improvement through the week.

As with everything, it's the finishing touches that count and each morning starts with a coffee and muffin before heading out onto the slopes and there's a glass of bubbles on the last afternoon to celebrate the week's achievements.

Dates and cost
The Ladies' Ski Weeks at Treble Cone are available on Monday 26 July and Monday 6 September 2010 and cost $595. For further information, visit

Women on the slopes
Women on the slopes
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Ski Achievement Week Camps and an All Mountain Riders programme for snow boarders
There are also Ski Achievement Week Camps starting every Monday from 19 July through to 13 September and an All Mountain Riders programme for snowboarders wanting to take full advantage of Treble Cone's legendary terrain under the expert guidance of Treble Cone's instructors.

Road improvements
2010 will also see the start of a staged five-year road improvement project, starting with the installation of a small length of barriers in key points along the mountain access road.

Webcam system to show weather conditions
For those who want to check out the conditions from anywhere in the world, Treble Cone has installed a new webcam system that will take high resolution images, not only static shots of the ski field, but also panning from the Lake, up the Main Basin to the top of the six-seater express. The images will also be relayed to screens at the base building so skiers and boarders can check out the weather at the top and in the Saddle without leaving the comfort of the café.

Dates for this year's season
Treble Cone will open on 24 June with an anticipated closing day of 3 October. For further information, visit

Lake Wanaka Ski Pass provides winter value
Plans for this winter include a flexible and economical ski pass.

Skiers and snowboarders can get even more for their ski dollar with the Lake Wanaka Ski Pass this winter. This interchangeable five-day anytime lift pass is valid at both Cardrona Alpine Resort and Treble Cone Ski Area allowing visitors to enjoy the diversity of the town's two major resorts.

Lake and mountain views riding the express chairlift at Treble Cone
Lake and mountain views riding the express chairlift at Treble Cone
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Features that draw enthusiasts to Treble Cone
Treble Cone is renowned as much for its spectacular views as it is for its exhilarating terrain and unforgettable powder days and is enjoyed by ski and snowboard enthusiasts of all abilities. Its vertical drop makes it home to the longest groomed trails in the South Island, be it a challenging black run or gentle beginners' slope.

Freeriding at Treble Cone
Freeriding at Treble Cone
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Features that draw families and freestylers to Cardrona
Cardrona Alpine Resort's high elevation and wide-open slopes ensure it is a favourite with families, beginners and intermediate skiers and riders and it has some of the best childcare facilities in Australasia. Freestylers also flock there for its Olympic-standard halfpipe and the longest terrain park in New Zealand.

Features of the resorts
"Lake Wanaka is home to New Zealand's largest skiable area and the resorts' high altitude plus their proximity to the Southern Alps Main Divide ensure reliable snow conditions," said Lake Wanaka Tourism general manager, James Helmore. "Combine the diversity of terrain with excellent facilities and you get a great value destination for any snow sports enthusiast.

"Cardrona and Treble Cone are both outstanding international resorts plus there's a host of off-snow activities here for the down days. Wanaka also features New Zealand's only cross country ski area and dedicated terrain park and the largest heliski area outside of North America."

Cost of the Lake Wanaka Ski Pass
The Lake Wanaka Ski Pass is available directly from Cardrona Alpine Resort or Treble Cone and is $420 for adults and $215 for children aged six and over. Children under six ski for free at both resorts.

Photos for this article were supplied by EveNZ Consultancy Ltd, Wanaka.

Editor's note

Alpine Coachlines offers transport to and from the ski fields, the airport and the walking tracks.

For information go to their site

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