Kaimakamaka Peaks, Ben Ohau Range

I understand that Kaimakamaka means ‘knucklebones’ in Maori. If this is so, then the peak is aptly named, as it sits like a solid fist on the ridge; rocky knuckles festooned with steep parallel couloirs. When the springtime snow line is high, a quick flight up to the Kaiamakamaka peaks is worthwhile. This area gets…

Ohau’s northern bowls, Ohau Range

August 2018 Ohau ski field is well known for having good access to ski touring. Indeed, search this website and you will find the posts for Mt Peterson, Mt Stafford and Mt St Mary. These peaks are accessed from the ski field, from above the top lift, via the south ridge . Other more common…

Awakino ski field access to St Marys Range

by Zucco – St. Marys range ski touring – Awakino ski area, “the pearl of the Waitaki”, is located in North Otago and provides easy access to the St. Marys range via Kurow and a well maintained 4wd access road to the base lodge at 1200m.  The field is open mostly on weekends only so…

Mt Olympus to Cheeseman ski field, Craigieburn Range, Canterbury

Mt Olympus to Cheeseman ski field is a suitably popular backcountry ski route, and is close to Christchurch. There are many good touring options in easy to moderate terrain. We did this tour starting at Mt Olympus, (after a good night of partying at the Olympus lodge) and heading to Cheeseman, but it can also…

Ohau Peak

Ohau peak offers an easy ski tour and ascent. The snow line fluctuates throughout the winter, so one could assume a fair amount of tramping or mountain biking will be required tog get to the snow line. View Larger Topographic Map Access via Quailburn track or Tarnbrae track.

Camp Stream from Roundhill ski field -Two Thumb Range

Once or twice a winter, a strong Easterly or South Easterly front pushes snow into the McKenzie Basin. Snow falls to low levels, often affecting SH8, and leaves Mt Cook Village and Tekapo township with 20cm of snow on the ground. When this event happens it is time to head into the Two Thumb Range. …

Garvie Mountains – Blue Lake Huts – Backcountry ski tour

Here is a five star ski tour in the Garvie Mountains, SE of Queenstown. The Blue Lake Huts makes a wonderful base from which to explore from. The terrain has something for everyone; steeps, rolling ridges, bluffs, lakes, chute, ice climbing. Note – this is on private land and permission is required before proceeding. View…

Ahuriri Valley, back country ski tour – Huxley Range

Early in the winter season there is often a wintry blast that comes in from the south west,  drops a good layer of snow down low in the Mackenzie Basin, and into the Ahuriri Valley. In early July 2015 we managed to sneak a ski tour in, skinning up from the Birchwood road , via…