The recent snow fall has seen around 30cm accumulate in the base area at Cardrona! The team started snowmaking on Monday 18th May with over 800,000 litres of water to kick things off. Temperatures in the forecast are looking good for further snowmaking this week to keep the base we’ve been forming and with just over 3 weeks until Opening Day we are chomping at the bit to get winter underway!
Cardrona’s approximately 2 million dollar investment has arrived in the form of four new Kassbohrer Pisten Bully Groomers. The new groomers are equipped with an integrated GPS snow and fleet management ‘Snow Sat’ system. Cardrona will be the only ski area in the Southern Hemisphere to use the innovative system which will provide:
• Premium slope quality.
• More environmentally friendly operating from reducing fuel consumption by 8% and operating time by 5%.
• A 15% reduction in the need to make snow.
• Improved slope management technology and snow depth measurement for increased accuracy in guest communications relating to snow base depth.
Erik Barnes, Cardrona’s Manager of Infrastructure and Operations commented about the innovative system, saying “This technology is a game changer for NZ skiing. We will be able to better manage our snow coverage to give our guests that perfect day out on the mountains. We were looking for ways to become more sustainable in our operations and reduce our impact on the environment while providing better quality snow. The new groomers and SnowSat system will reduce our need for snowmaking and provide us with the ability to create that perfect base and surface.”
Cardrona have an exciting range of new improvements for the 2015 winter season to entertain all levels of skiers and snowboarders. For the beginners, a new learner conveyor has been constructed which runs parallel to the existing conveyor to help decrease lift queues. The beginner terrain park ‘Lil Bucks’ has been moved to the skiers left side of McDougall’s chairlift to give beginner freestylers more space and a larger variety of features which completes Cardrona’s terrain park offering that caters to first-timers, through to world class athletes. The move will also increase the available space for beginners down McDougall’s green run. Now, more than ever, Cardrona is perfect for those new to snow!
The groomers have been on snow packing down trails in preparations for opening day in just over 3 weeks (yeewww!). Cardrona’s trail network now includes a new intermediate trail along the ridge line connecting Valley View and Tail Race trails. This will provide 10 extra hectares of on-piste terrain and make it considerably easier to access terrain off the Valley View Quad lift. Several main trails have been widened over summer to give even more space to beginner/intermediate skiers and snowboarders this season.
Earthworks have also been underway in the 22ft Olympic Halfpipe to make the transition from each wall longer and to make the pipe easier to maintain. Cardrona’s terrain park crew have over 50 years combined experience and have a new addition to the park groomer crew: X Games and Winter Olympic Halfpipe builder John Melville. John has over 15 years’ experience building and maintaining features which will significantly contribute to upholding Cardrona’s world class terrain park facilities. Cardrona will continue to provide high quality freestyle facilities for not only everyday guests, but for large events such as the Audi Quattro Winter Games, The Northface NZ Freeski Open and the Cardrona Junior Nationals.
Cardrona is scheduled to open on Saturday June 13. The first week of the season will see limited beginner’s terrain on offer with additional terrain opening as snowfall allows. Cardrona will open more facilities in the initial opening week if snowfall allows.
Three weeks and counting!!