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Ski Patrol & Slope Safety

Cardrona’s Ski Patrol & Slope Safety team are out & about to keep you safe every day on Cardrona's slopes. Check out our safety tips, signage & backcountry advisory information to have a great day on the mountain.


Emergency Contact

Put the Medical Centre phone number in your mobile – +64 3 443 1576. Ring this number if you are involved in or witness an accident on the slopes & require medical assistance. Ski Patrol will come & assess any injuries & organise transfers to the Medical Centre.

Ski Patrol are located at the top of Whitestar Express & Captain’s Express. If you witness an accident, have any safety questions or concerns, flag down a patroller at one of these locations & they’ll be more than happy to help!


Slope Safety

Our Slope Safety team assist Ski Patrol with ensuring the day to day safety of all our guests. They’re also responsible for ensuring all guests abide by the Snow Code.

You may get pulled up by Slope Safety if you are:

  • Speeding
  • Skiing/riding dangerously
  • Riding in a closed area
  • Colliding with another guest

Any of the above offences can result in a loss of pass – the length of which will be determined by how serious the incident was & how many times the skier/snowboarder has been pulled up.


Terrain & Trails

At Cardrona we have 4 tiers of trails:

  • Beginner – Green circle
  • Intermediate – Blue square
  • Advanced – Red rectangle
  • Expert – Black diamond

Check out our Trail Map to see where all our different trail levels are.


Signage

Our signage is in a "traffic light" coded system:

Green – good to go! If you see a green sign at Cardrona, it generally means a feature or trail is open & ready for you to charge!

Orange – slow down! Orange is the colour we use for all our Slow Zones, including the new extended for Westons Trail & Footrot Flats under the McDougall’s Express Chondola.

Yellow – information. All our general information signage like the Snow Safety Code are in yellow.

Red – stop! Red signs often indicate closed areas, or things like winch cats in operation.


Safety tips for guests

1. Plan your trip
Check out our weather forecast a week in advance of your trip so you know what gear to bring. Our daily Snow Report is updated from 6.30am daily & will let you know what the weather & road conditions for that specific day will be so you can pack accordingly.

2. Be prepared
Weather & road conditions can change rapidly in an alpine environment. Even if the Snow Report says the road is clear & chain-free, throw a set in your boot just in case. Bring clothing layers so you have more to put on if the temperature drops, & waterproof layers in case of snow. Sunscreen is always a useful item to pack!

Warm up & stretch – the best way to avoid injury on a ski resort is to make sure your body is warmed up before you start charging hard! ACC offer some good tips, check them out here.

3. Wear protective gear

Helmets, body armour & eye protection (goggles or sunglasses) are very good ideas to keep you safe on the mountain! We especially recommend helmets if you’re skiing or snowboarding through any of our terrain parks, & some form of eye protection is essential to avoid snow blinding.

4. Tips for kids

Put your phone number in your children’s pocket, so if they get separated from you Ski Patrol have your contact details. Read our Lift Safety for Families blog, & check out our new lift safety guards!


The resort boundary

Uphill Access Information

As a courtesy to our guests & the community, Cardrona allows uphill access for ski touring, snowshoeing, & hiking (no snowmobiles) along 1 route within the resort operating boundary. 

  • All uphill access is via the Skyline & Queenstown Return trails to the top of the Captain’s Express, with access starting in Carpark B at the Backcountry Advisory Sign
  •  Uphill access is prohibited across the rest of the resort
  • Uphill travellers must stay to the outside of the trail & travel in single file. Make sure you can be seen from above at all times
  • Uphill access is permitted between 8.30am & 4pm & may be subject to environmental or operational closures. Open/closed status of uphill travel is posted at the bottom end of Skyline & Queenstown Return trails. Uphill traffic is not permitted outside these hours due to groomer, winch cable & snowmaking activity across the entire mountain
  • Travel up the Cardrona mountain road may also be subject to the open/closed status of the road indicated at the Toll Gate
  • All ski field closures must be obeyed
  • The Cardrona Alpine Resort operating boundary is clearly marked throughout the resort. No Ski Patrol response or avalanche control exists beyond this boundary. If you leave the operating boundary you are entering a backcountry area where avalanche & other hazards may exist
  • Any vehicle left in the carpark after 5pm must be notified to Patrol or will be subject to Search & Rescue costs

Backcountry Information

  • Please fill out a Winter Touring Register before departing for the day. These are located beside the Backcountry Advisory Sign in Carpark B, & at the Ski Patrol building in the Base Area
  • Any vehicle left in the carpark after 5pm must be notified to Patrol or will be subject to Search & Rescue costs
  • The Cardrona Alpine Resort operating boundary is clearly marked throughout the resort. No Ski Patrol response or avalanche control exists beyond this boundary. If you leave the operating boundary you are entering a backcountry area where avalanche & other hazards may exist
  • The main back bowl, Soho Basin, is used by a commercial cat skiing operation & has certain requirements for public using the land. Cardrona encourage public to follow their rules to ensure continued public access to the land. More information can be found here
  • The Southern Lakes Avalanche Advisory can be found here
  • Backcountry users need to have the proper equipment & training to be able to safely operate in the backcountry. More information on courses and equipment can be found here
  • The Patrol team are always available to advise on current avalanche & snow conditions
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