Ski Descents Mt Avalanche & Mt Aspiring – Freddy Varengo

I met with Freddy this morning and got the beta on some of his latest ski trips. This is his second trip over to NZ from his home in Turino, Italy.  He’s been back in the country about a month and has been running around skiing so much that he says he’s exhausted. Yesterday he did a one day trip from Aspiring hut onto Cascade saddle, up Mt Liverpool then skied down into the Dart, then back out to top out on Mt Tyndall and back to Aspiring hut. Phew. When we left the cafe he was off to New World to buy a “huge amount of food”.

Anyhow Freddy was very keen on his recent  ski of Mt Avalanche. He left from French Ridge hut and climbed the Quarterdeck, descended onto the Maud Francis before climbing Mt Avalanche.

SW Face Mt Avalanche


The ski descent he described as fantastic, just a touch under 50 degrees but very exposed in the top half. He described the snow as “pressed powder”. Freddy then pick up his bivy gear, rocked up Mt French,  then skied the Breakaway down into the Matukituki Valley. There are no pictures, he travels light and fast.

I believe this line was skied about ten years ago by the Canadian Johnny Chilton. Does anyone else know?

Freddy also skied the west face of Mt Aspiring. The crux was the entrance, he had to climb the first 15m onto the face from the ridge over a rock band. Once on the face he described the  skiing as fun, easier than Mt Avalanche, with a slope angle of about 45 degrees plus. The snow was also “pressed powder”.

West face Mt Aspiring


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