Freeskiing in Mt Hutt, NZ
In South America Las Lenas is the first resort to open in Argentina has opened with a metre of snow on upper slopes, but the country's other leading resort, Catedral, says it needs more snow before opening, there's currently about a foot (30cm) on upper slopes.
Conditions at most ski areas in Chile are looking good after the centres there reported receiving up to two feet (60cm) of snow in the past week, most of it just before the weekend. Chapa Verde has a 60cm (two foot) base and Chapelco 50cm (20 inches).
However Valle Nevado and the South American ‘ three Valleys' that surround it have some of the best conditions on the continent with more than 1.6m (over five feet) of accumulated snowfall to date. Portillo, which delayed its opening by a week, is now on schedule to open this weekend.
In southern Africa there's snow sports as well as World Cup football. Africa's Tiffindell is open for skiing and Afriski in Lesotho has had more new snow taking its base depth to 65cm (2.2 feet) with a 400m long slope open.
In Australia there's been no new natural snowfall for over a week now but temperatures are continuing to stay quite low so most resorts with snowmaking are making more, and resorts like Falls Creek, Mt Hotham and Perisher have 40 or 50cm (16-20 inches) of snow on snowmaking areas, Thredbo has a little less.
More ski areas have been opening in New Zealand. Treble Cone, which has received excellent pre-season snow, will open tomorrow (Thursday 24 June) with the first lift running at 8.30am. There'll be Amisfield bubbles for the first 150 skiers on the lifts. Whakapapa is scheduled to open on Saturday 26th June.
Of the already-open areas, Turoa has 80cm (nearly three feet) of snow on upper slopes. The Remarkables has 85cm (nearly three feet) and has reported 10cm (four inches) of new snow earlier today. Coronet Peak has the same amount lying and 15cm (six inches) of new snow so far today. But Mt Hutt has trumped both with 25cm (10 inches) of new snow today and a metre (3.3 foot) base.
After getting their first turns of the season on Treble Cone's feeride terrain, skiers and snowboarders can spend the afternoon testing their aerial skills on The AirBag. The AirBag is a supersized, air-filled stunt cushion that provides a soft landing for skiers and snowboarders. The first time it has been seen in on-snow in New Zealand, The Airbag is used throughout Europe to develop the training techniques of Olympic and national aerial teams.
The giant 10mx15m cushion will be in full view of the Treble Cone deck and high-speed six seater chairlift for onlookers to check out all the aerial action as some of the region's top pro freeskiers and snowboarders put it through its paces.