Located in the Alpine National Park in the north-eastern region of Victoria, Australia, Falls Creek offers world-class snow skiing facilities during the country’s winter months. Lying at an altitude of between 1,210 and 1,830 meters the ski-in, ski-out resort has lift facilities to take snow sport enthusiasts to a level of 1,780 meters, with snowcat access to the nearby peak of Mount McKay at 1,842 meters high. While the majority of skiers and snowboarders visiting Falls Creek are from within Australia, the resort draws large numbers of international cross-country skiers for the annual Kangaroo Hoppet, and international snowboarders for the Australian Slopestyle Championships, dubbed Stylewars, as well as for the Australian leg of the TTR World Tour in early September.
Held annually on the last Saturday of August, The Kangaroo Hoppet is a long distance cross-country skiing race regulated by the Worldloppet Ski Federation. The day’s activities include three main events – The Kangaroo Hoppet, the Australian Birkebeiner and the Joe Hoppet. The Kangaroo Hoppet covers a distance of 42 km and is an official Worldloppet main race, while the Australian Birkebeiner covers half the distance and is counted as a Worldloppet short race. The 7 km Joey Hoppet offers skiers the opportunity to experience a taste of the larger events, but is not counted as a Worldloppet race. This popular event has been taking place annually since it debuted in 1991.
A new ski resort has opened its doors at Falls Creek for the 2013 snow sport season, offering 63 one, two and three-bedroom apartments with panoramic views of the spectacular scenery the area is known for. Most of the apartments have hot-tubs on their balconies, screened off from neighbors for privacy while making the most of the view. QT Falls Creek will have the chain’s signature StingRay lounge for esprit-ski activities, as well as the SpaQ wellness center for some serious pampering.
As Australia heads into snow sport season, a leading Australian climatologist has noted that each year the snow season is shrinking, and predicts that this winter will be no exception. As the Australian Bureau of Meteorology monitors the situation, it has been observed that particularly high temperatures have been recorded over the past nine months, with every indication that above-average temperatures will continue during winter. However, thanks to modern snowmaking technologies, snow sport fans are assured that they will be able to enjoy their Australian skiing vacations as usual.
Celebrating the onset of winter in New Zealand by promoting the thrill of snow skiing, some of the country’s top winter athletes will be offering free skills sessions at Snowplanet on Saturday May 18, 2013. The special ‘Welcome to Winter’ event will feature loads of tips from Anna Wilcox, Tom McGaw and Byron Wells, helping newcomers and seasoned snow sport enthusiasts to hone their skills for the coming season.
Based in Wanaka, Byron Wells participated in the Dew Tour iON Mountain Championships held at Colorado’s Breckenridge Ski Resort in December 2012, claiming second place in the Men’s Freeski Superpipe event, thereby adding to his growing list of achievements. As one of four talented brothers, Byron was born in Wanaka on April 3, 1992, and was introduced to the snow at a very young age. He earned the title of the New Zealand National Champion for ski racing in his age group from 2000 through to 2006.
With her eye on the 2014 Winter Olympic Games set to take place in Sochi, Russia, freeskier Anna Wilcox-Silfverberg’s career best thus far has been third place in the International Ski Federation (FIS) Freestyle Ski World Cup women’s slopestyle finals held in Sierra Nevada Spain. Based in Auckland, Wilcox has only been competing in the slopestyle discipline for a year, so the third place victory reveals the skier’s huge potential for the future.
Based in the Southern Lakes region and training at Snow Park and Cardrona, Tom McGaw is fresh out of high school and already making an impression on the New Zealand snow sport scene with his daredevil talents.
Go Snow marketing coordinator Jo Lynch is encouraging skiers and snowboards to join in the fun and learn new tricks and ride with the pros on Snowplanet’s terrain park, noting that the athletes are taking time out from their busy training schedules to pass on some tips, share their experiences and answer questions.
Skiers and riders can also see this as an opportunity to try the latest gear, see some equipment demos, stand a chance of scoring some awesome giveaways, and enjoy the music. Welcome to Winter starts at 9am on May 18 and goes on all day. Pre-sold discounted tickets are available on the Snowplanet website from today.