My Life in New Zealand

Category: Ski Season

Snow Farm NZ

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It was one of those perfect early Spring days on the mountain – blue skies, warm breeze, and longer day, perfect conditions for my first weekend of cross country skiing with a few good friends! We decided to make a full weekend of it by cross country skiing into the Bob Lee Hut and staying for a night. We arranged for a snowmobile to deliver our bags of clothes and food for the night and we took our time getting to the hut- about 10km away from the main lodge. The next day I woke up bright and early and caught the perfect sunrise, complete with a pink sky!

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Milford Sound

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Ruyard Kipling called it the eighth Wonder of the World – and well, I would have to agree. Milford Sound is a fiord located in the south west of the South Island and it’s stunning any time of the year and in any weather conditions. We lucked out and had the best of both worlds, earlier in the day it had been pouring which made the falls strong and fierce, but as the day wore on the sun came out and we were blessed with clear skies and stunning views.

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Evening Cruise on Lake Wakatipu

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One of the benefits of living on the lake … birthday parties on the lake! There are a handful of great boating operators on Lake Wakatipu, and good thing for that since there are many tourists looking to cruise the lake. One of the most fun and funky businesses is the Luanda Experience – complete with lava lamps and shag carpet! And a 30th celebration just wouldn’t be complete with out a jump into the freezing cold Queenstown lake!

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Winter Wonderland in Queenstown

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The day before I left New Zealand to head back home for a 5 week summer holiday I decided to take a little walk up Queenstown Hill to give a proper farewell to Queenstown. I was awed by stunning views and a fresh dusting of new fallen snow! It made my transition into summer a bit jolting – but it was the perfect Queenstown goodbye!

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Ski Season is ON

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SKI SEASON is on! This weekend marked the opening of Cardrona Ski Field and I couldn’t be more excited. I consider myself a summer girl – however after my first winter season last year, a new pair of boots, I was really looking forward to the start of the season this year. We headed up Saturday and Sunday and were blessed with blue skies, light wind, and great snow (for the first weekend anyway!)

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Mount Aspiring National Park

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Well – to be honest, we didn’t actually make it into Mount Aspiring National Park, and not because we didn’t want to, but because of the huge fords we were unable to pass in our little suburu. The other weekend we decided to take a day trip from Queenstown and head to Wanaka. An hours drive from Wanaka takes you the outskirts of Mt. Aspiring National Park and from here you hike into the park. Already dreaming of summer so I can return!

Due to heavy rain and big winds we only made it half way along the West Branch of the Matukituki (say that out loud!) Valley, but the rain didn’t stop our fun! We enjoyed the misty scenery along the way and stopped for a few photo ops along – mainly with the large and gushing waterfall at the end of our journey.

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The Luxmore Hut

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One of the best things about New Zealand is the plethora of long distance hikes that are recommended to take 2-4 days. All of these hikes have a number of huts maintained the the DOC. A nightly Hut rate ranges from $15-$60 depending on the location and the season. The Luxmore Hut is one of 3 along the Kepler Track and with our off season rate, we each paid $15 for the hut. The Luxmore Hut has 55 beds along with a communal living space with long tables, benches, and a wood fire heating system. Each camper has to bring their own cooking gas, head lamps, and sleeping bags.  The night we were visiting there were about 20 others who had made the big hike up!

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We love Cardrona!

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Cheers to an EPIC ski season!

 

Last Ski Day 2013

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Well, I can’t believe it, but ski season 2013 has come to an end. I have had the.best.time.ever experiencing a true ski season, from buying my first pair of personal skis (ex-rentals!) to holding a season pass, I have loved every second of the season. This past weekend a group of us headed up to Cardrona and stayed the night on the mountain in one of their lodge rooms. We had the best time!

Sunday was the last day of the season, and to celebrate many wore costumes and there was live music all around! We ended the day at the Cardrona Hotel, enjoying beers, nachos, and chips in the sun.

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The Frankton Track

IMG_5896I am so fortunate to have an awesome running/walking/biking track a short 5 minutes from the doorstep of my apartment. The Frankton Track wraps around the lake and offers amazing views of Queenstown. The track is 5K each way and very flat (which is unusual for this area!) I had the best time this weekend, running and stopping to take photos. Just me, my music, and the amazing scenery of New Zealand.

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