Quite, Excellent snow conditions, great runs, friendly people
Small ski area, Lifts very slow, dodgy roads to the base station.
We decided to have a skiing / snowboarding holiday in New Zealand and decided on Queenstown as our destination. We flu to Christchurch and drove the 7 long hours across the Southern Alps to reach Queenstown. The drive in its self was a challenge with snow blizzards and black ice on the roads. We had to stop a few times to fit wheel chains to the car, but it added to the adventure.
Queenstown itself is an excellent town to stay; our group stayed in the Oak Shores Apartments looking onto Lake Wakatipu and the Remarkables mountain range.
Ski resorts in New Zealand are different to the ones in Europe in the way that you have to drive to the ski fields. The Remarkables ia about a 45 min drive from Queenstown on a good day. The road up to the base is breathtaking and scary at the same time. Remember to carry chains with you because you’ll need them if it starts to snow.
Once you park up, you are walking to a magic carpet which takes you straight to the base station where there is a café, ticket office, hire shop and toilets. After purchasing your ticket you have two lifts to choose from, one on the left and one on the right at the bottom of the nursery slopes.
Both lifts are Quad chair lifts which are extremely slow but the views are amazing so it didn’t bother me too much.
The resort has terrain for all types of ability. If you are a beginner, the lifts on the left hand side will suit you. In our group we had 2 people who enjoyed the green and blue slopes, and this suited them (it was there best ski resort we visited).
If you class yourself as an intermediate / advanced skiing, I would recommend taking the right hand side lift and trying the runs round there. My personal favourite was the Homeward Run. This run is a must for all advanced skiers (if the conditions are right), we were lucky to have fresh power.
The only drawback to the Homeward Run is that there isn’t lifts back to the resort so you have to wait for buss to pick you up. At the most I waited 30 mins, but on average it was about 15 mins (well worth it)
Also at the Remarkables are snow parks and Jumps which are great.
We also paid an extra $30 each to go tubing for 1 hour. Basically, you get a large rubber ring and chuck yourself down the hill side. There is a rope lift dedicated to the tubes so you can connect the tube to the lift, sit in it and it’ll drag you up!!
Summary, I really enjoyed my day at the Remarkables. If I had anymore time there, I would have got bored. The snow conditions were excellent and there weren’t any queues for the lifts (which was a major problem with Cadrona and Coronet Peak.) I would recommend the Remarkables to all abilities.
If you are learning to ski or snowboard for the first time. I would recommend that you do it here. The Nursery slopes were deserted compared to Cadrona and Coronet Peak.