Methven Heli Tour
4 Nights I Includes Heliski Day
August 23, 2018 to August 27, 2018
$1990 Per Person
Join us on our quest to find New Zealand’s finest freeride terrain. Our tour is based at Mt Taylor Lodge in Methven, just over an hours drive from Christchurch International Airport. This small country town is the perfect staging area for some of New Zealand’s best resort and backcountry riding. Home to the legendary heli operation, Methven Heli, where we spend a full day heli-skiing, accessing their huge tenure across 3 mountain ranges; The Arrowsmith, Ragged, and Palmer Ranges. These mountains catch snow from every winter storm to deliver NZ heliskiing’s most consistent snow conditions and quality. Nowhere else in NZ (outside of the Mt Cook area) can you find the glaciated high-alpine terrain that Methven Heliski offers. We also spend a day riding at Mt Hutt where we can access incredible terrain right off the lifts or further afield if you’re ready to earn your turns.
Day 1 – Arrival Day
Welcome to New Zealand! On arrival at Christchurch Airport proceed to the meeting point to meet your driver. You will travel by shuttle to our Methven accommodation, Mt Taylor Lodge where your guides will greet you and check you in. Relax and meet the crew in the laid back and scenic lodge. In the evening we’ll head out for dinner to enjoy some great local food.
Day 2 – Mt Hutt Warm Up Day
Our first day on snow will be focused on getting our legs warmed up for our Heli Day. We will head up to Mt Hutt, a must do for any NZ snow tour. Stick to the groomers or hit the impressive powder bowls to get prepared. We return in our private transport, then head out for dinner in Methven. We will generally hit the town to check out the Blue Pub or Brown pub, located conveniently across the road from each other.
Day 3 – Heli-ski Day
We have an early start with a home cooked breakfast at the lodge. We’ll load our equipment into the van and then make the drive to Glenfalloch Station which is our heli staging area. We make our way up the Rakaia Gorge on unsealed roads until we reach the high country sheep station which is at the foot of the Arrowsmith and Ragged Ranges. Once at the station your guides will conduct a safety briefing which includes rescue training and how to use your avalanche safety equipment. They will also brief you on Helicopter Safety. All of the Methven Heliski guides are trained in avalanche rescue and have a wealth of knowledge that they are happy to share with you. Questions are welcomed and encouraged. Methven Heli is unique in that it is the only operator in the area and they have the choice between the super long runs in the Arrowsmith Range or the epic, steep and challenging runs in the Ragged Range. This decision on where we ride will be based on snow conditions and overall group ability levels. In the mornings we typically do 3 – 4 runs before breaking for lunch on mountain. We will have a picnic style lunch in the mountains with sandwiches, snacks and plenty of hot tea and water. In the afternoon we’ll complete our remaining runs, and if there is the opportunity to do more runs, your guides will advise the group. After we have finished riding we will return back to Glenfalloch Station where you can have a few well earned drinks. We’ll then load the vans and head back to Mt Taylor Lodge.
Day 4 – Weather Contingency Day / Optional 2nd Heli Day
Our fourth day gives us a window of flexibility if weather prevents a fly day or to add an extra day of Heli if you’re still up for it. You can also decide to head back to Mt Hutt for another day of riding or just take it easy and relax around the lodge and check out Methven.
Day 5 – Departure Day
Reminisce one last time on the past few days of riding before we drop you back at the airport with your luggage and a ton of life long memories!
+ 1 days Heliskiing with Methven Heliski
+ 1 days professional heliski guide services
+ Use of safety equipment on heliski days
+ Return transfers to heli staging area on heliski days
+ 1 day riding at Mt Hutt, includes guiding, lift ticket & transport
+ 4 nights twin share accommodation, Mt Taylor Lodge
+ 5 breakfasts at Mt Taylor Lodge
+ Generous picnic lunch on heliski days
+ Return scheduled airport transfers, Christchurch Airport
+ Access to waxing and tuning room
+ Hosting & guiding by Mint Tours
We spend a full day heli-skiing with Methven Heliski, accessing their huge tenure across 3 mountain ranges; The Arrowsmith, Ragged, and Palmer Ranges. These mountains catch snow from every winter storm to deliver NZ heliskiing’s most consistent snow conditions and quality. Nowhere else in NZ (outside of the Mt Cook area) can you find the glaciated high-alpine heliskiing terrain that Methven Heliski offers.
What is included
+ 1 day heliski package, 5 runs per day
+ Runs averaging 750-1,000 vertical metre drops
+ Professional heliski guide services
+ Generous picnic lunch
+ Safety equipment, including avalanche transceivers
+ Return transfers from Methven to Glenfalloch Station helipad
+ Extra runs are always available at NZD $110 each run.
Mid-August is the best time to heliski. Conditions are colder with more powder days.
Heliskiing is suitable for intermediate to advanced skiers and snowboarders, or those with previous off-piste experience
How long are the runs?
Run length can vary with snow conditions. Methven Heli-ski’s extensive terrain includes several runs over 1000 vertical metres. They guarantee that you’ll ski at least 3000 vertical metres with a 5 run heli-ski day.
What to bring
+ Your equipment. We recommend a powder board.
+ Warm clothing – a windproof jacket and pants, warm gloves
+ Goggles or sunglasses and sunscreen
+ Don’t forget your camera. This will be an experience to remember.
Group size is limited to a maximum of 5 guests per guide. You will be grouped according to your ability. Your guide will select the terrain best suited to your group.
All guests and guides wear an avalanche transceiver. Guides also carry a radio and a rescue pack. Extra equipment is carried in our helicopters in case of emergency. All guests (regardless of experience) will receive a safety briefing from their guide – including how to use an avalanche transceiver – before boarding the first chopper ride. Methven Heliski guides are trained in emergency first aid, mountain survival, and rescue.
A Typical Heli-ski day
Timing for a standard day follows. Times are approximate:
07:30 – 08:00 Breakfast at the lodge. Your guide will advise on weather, snow conditions, and the day’s schedule
08:30 Depart Mt Taylor Lodge for helipad at Glenfalloch Station
09:30 Safety briefing, and avalanche transceivers issued
09:50 Helicopters depart
15:00 First helicopter loads return to Glenfalloch
16:00 Depart Glenfalloch Station
17:00 Return to Mt Taylor Lodge
The Methven Heli Tour is the ultimate tour for riders who want to pack in as much snowboarding in NZ within a short space of time. With regular and cheap flights to Christchurch, Methven sets itself up as a perfect staging area for some of New Zealand’s best resort and backcountry terrain.
Throughout the tour you’ll be riding with our Mint guide and host. We spend a day at Mt Hutt to get the legs prepared for the days ahead and explore this resort. Mt Hutt has a great community vibe as well as world class terrain. Our Heli days is with Methven Heli. They operate on a huge terrain tenure across 3 mountain ranges. The mountains out here are big, you will see why we like to call it ‘Mini Alaska’. All safety gear and briefing on how to use it is provided by internationally accredited Heli Guides. A typical day will consist of 5 huge leg burning runs from the Heli, with the option to add on extra runs if your legs and lungs allow! Our ‘Optional Day’ is in the itinerary to give us a window of flexibility if weather prevents a fly day or to add an extra day of Heli if you’re still up for it. You can also decide to head back to Mt Hutt for another day of riding or just take it easy and relax around the lodge and check out Methven.
Our base for the tour is Mt Taylor Lodge. A comfortable and modern lodge located in central Methven. Throughout the tour you will be staying in twin share ensuite rooms. However if you’d prefer your own space, single share rooms can be arranged. The lodge has a large communal lounge, complete with a wood burning fireplace making it a great place to relax and enjoy socialising after a long day skiing. The lodge also features a media room, complimentary wifi, drying room and full laundry facilities.
Suitable for intermediate to advanced riders with off-piste riding experience.
$500 deposit required to secure booking with balance payable 60 days prior to departure. All bookings are subject to Mint Tours terms and conditions and are subject to availability at time of booking.