LAKE WANAKA, New Zealand (03 July 2009) - Lake Wanaka’s 2009 ski season is officially underway with all four fields open for business.

Good snowfalls throughout May combined with a prolonged period of cool and calm weather, ideal for snow making, has equipped the mountains across the region with one metre bases providing the best opening conditions in a decade. A cold front moving across the region over the past few days has provided a timely deposit of fresh snow for the July school holidays starting on Monday.

Snow Farm opened in mid-June for cross-country skiers with many kilometres of world class trails. Snow Farm is New Zealand’s only Nordic ski area will host many international teams and events this season as well as continuing is successful development of Biathlon.

Cardrona Alpine Resort opened all facilities and 100% of their extensively groomed trails last Friday. Skiers and boarders had great on-piste and weather conditions throughout the day.

Treble Cone kicked off their season on Saturday opening all of its 550ha of skiable terrain, including the Saddle Basin and Motatapu Chutes, plenty of beginners took advantage of the free learner’s lift as well as the shuttle bus transporting visitors up the mountain access road.

The roll-out of Lake Wanaka’s ski areas continues with Snow Park NZ opening tomorrow (4 July). With good fresh snow coverage across the terrain park and new features introduced over summer the freestyle action will get underway. Snow Park NZ is looking forward to starting their night skiing and riding sessions, twice weekly, on Tuesday (7 July).

James Helmore, general manager of Lake Wanaka Tourism said there was a positive buzz of excitement in town, “The ski season has started and it is great to see keen skiers and boarders coming from around the globe to experience our four world class resorts and enjoy the unique alpine town. We are looking forward to the busy season ahead,” he said.

Lake Wanaka’s resorts will again host many national and international events over the coming winter months. Events such as the 100% Pure New Zealand Winter Games, incorporating the LG FIS Snowboard World Cup, and the Burton New Zealand Open will offer spectacular action from world class athletes.

The new developments for Lake Wanaka’s resorts include: a new FIS certified trail and expansion of terrain at Cardrona with a snowmaking upgrade to cover the entire resort, night skiing and riding extended to three nights a week at Snow Park NZ as well as new all-inclusive accommodation packages. Treble Cone is offering free use of the lower mountain learner lifts all season long and 90 minute complimentary guided tours of the mountain (groomed trails) twice daily.

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