Australia and NZ Season Starts Early

Thanks to early snowfalls and low temperatures, along with snowmaking facilities, Australia’s Perisher Resort will be opening a week earlier than planned and snow sport enthusiasts can head to Perisher’s Front Valley on Saturday June 2. While skiers take to the slopes they can feel good about the fact that proceeds from lift ticket sales for the weekend will support various charities in the local community. Opening hours on both Saturday and Sunday are from 9am to 3pm, with gear rental, retail, food and beverages being available. Perisher plans to be the first resort in Australia to kick off the 2012 winter season. Thredbo is reported to be considering opening on June 6, a few days ahead of the scheduled opening.

In New Zealand, Snow Park is planning to open on June 15 with loads of action planned for its 10th anniversary. The extensive ski and snowboard terrain park includes night skiing and slopeside accommodation. Originally owned by the Lee family, and bought over by Snow Park Holdings in 2008, Snow Park has built a reputation for world-class facilities catering to every level of snowboarder and skier, from beginners through to seasoned pros. The increase in pre-season pass sales, which come to an end this Sunday, are a clear indication that the resort is giving snow sport enthusiasts what they want. In a business that is largely reliant on the weather, Snow Park’s revenue reportedly climbed by 25 percent from 2009 to 2010, and a further 33 percent from 2010 to 2011.

The grooming and park building team at Snow Park are hard at work preparing for the season’s opening. Snow Park plans to continue its partnership with world-class terrain and halfpipe building company Development Snowparks, which considers Snow Park to be the flagship resort featuring the company’s services and products.

2011 saw the very successful debut of Snow Park School, which will continue into the 2012 season with programs for skiers and boarders to learn from scratch, or improve their technique. Night & Day Coaching will also feature on the 2012 program, with both programs offering private and group lessons catering for all levels of experience.

So, while the northern hemisphere looks forward to summer, New Zealand and Australia have plenty to offer snow sport enthusiasts – in the very near future.