So, your boss has given you the thumbs up for a week or two off work and epic New Zealand powder is on your radar. Not sure where to ride this season? Don’t worry! Check out our guide on which resorts to head to in New Zealand this winter…
Cardrona is one of our favourite all-rounder mountains to ride each season, with dry snow, wide open groomers to perfect those carves, and one of the best park setups in NZ. Best for beginners to intermediate snowboarders and families, Cardrona has all the on-mountain facilities needed for a day on the slopes, and is easily accessible from both Queenstown and Wanaka. For advanced riders heading to NZ, there is plenty of off-piste excitement to be had in the Arcadia Chutes and Captain’s area, which is guaranteed to get that heart pumping.
Perfect for: those new snowboarding, all-rounders, and families.
The ‘Remarks’ has cemented itself as one of the best resorts for freestyle riders, boasting 3 impressive terrain parks, including a beginners park, big park, and Burton Stash park. Cruise along the longest run (Homeward Run), or take a hike up to the peak for untouched terrain and amazing views across Queenstown and Lake Wakatipu. The closest resort to Queenstown, the Remarkables is super easy to tick off your resort must-ride list.
Perfect for: freestyle fiends, and those seeking park progression.
This off-piste riding gem is just over an hour from Christchurch, and definitely worth the hike. The steep mountainous terrain of Mt. Hutt means a massive accumulation of fresh powder after a decent storm, up to an average of 4 metres each season! Open more days than any other resort, Mt Hutt boasts fast groomers and over 365 hectares of treeless terrain for fun freestyle riding, and to top it off, usually no lift lines! For those who love to earn their turns, there are numerous off-piste chutes and bowls with terrain to rival any heliski (almost). The town of Methven itself is a laid-back and in-expensive alternative to the resorts in Queenstown. No trip to Methven is complete without a visit to the infamous Blue Pub, and a night at Mt. Taylor lodge for a true local’s experience.
Perfect for: powderhounds and those looking for some decent thigh burn this season.
Often considered the best terrain and best overall resort in NZ, you’ll feel like you’re standing at the edge of the world at TC. The largest resort on the South Island, TC boasts the longest vertical drop and highest average annual snowfall. Not for the faint hearted, almost half of all terrain is rated advanced to expert, perfect for those seeking to take their riding to the next level. Head over to Saddle Basin for those infamous natural halfpipes, and runs with the perfect combination of steep and wide, big banks, and loads of natural hits for fun transitions.
Perfect for: advanced riders wanting to tame that double black.
Canterbury Club fields
Looking for something a bit different this season? Leave the crowds behind and experience the quiet and laid-back atmosphere of the Canterbury Club Field region, located in the middle of NZ’s Southern Alps.
Earn some epic turns and hone in your split-boarding skills at Temple Basin, with limitless opportunities to hike the ridges and drop in to untouched basins and bowls. TB is a freerider’s nirvana, with natural half and quarter pipes, and numerous lips to huck off. Ungroomed and untamed, Temple Basin is popular among powderhounds worldwide.
(We ride Temple Basin on our Canterbury Club Fields tour this season. It’s a tour not to be missed!)
Rated by Danny Davis as ‘the best club field in the world!’, Ohau Ski Field is a true hidden gem among riders in NZ. If you’re seeking incredibly fun terrain with loads of natural features and limitless off-piste opportunities, Ohau is a must-ride resort this season. Venture to the top of the Ridge Run for great views and even better sidecountry powder turns on the way down. No crowds also means you don’t have to share the powder! Stay at Lake Ohau Lodge for a truly laid-back and friendly ski lodge experience.
Perfect for: riders wanting to escape the crowds, and earn some unforgettable turns.
We visit ALL these resorts on our upcoming New Zealand tours. Take your pick and tick off your must-ride list this season!