I pulled on the unflattering long-johns, threw the woolly socks over the top and glanced out the window of my van to… a million shorn sheep in a paddock – freezing their arses off for my lil’ tootsies. And if I play my cards right, I’ll be eating their chops later this evening, but that’s neither here nor there. Four layers later, I’m ready to hit some New Zealand snow – “hit” being the operative word.

New Zealand is well known for its adventurous edge and you can bet those crazy summer activities like bungy jumping, caving, skydiving and jetboating are all a way to keep the Kiwis chasing the adrenalin dragon when the snow has melted. But for now, the snow phone says 12 inches of powder on the piste with blue skies, so whatever the hell Zorbing is, it will have to wait.

Treble Cone
The basics: My first day riding in New Zealand saw blue skies with a foot-and-a half of snow at Treble Cone – perfect conditions to fall all over the place, trying to find my mountain legs again. TC to the cool kids, this mountain, close to Wanaka in New Zealand’s Southern Alps, has excellent terrain, especially off-piste action. Be prepared to have your lungs explode from the crisp yet almost non-existent air. There are 
runs for all levels of snow lovers, with a quaint chalet for the hot chocolate afterwards.

Where to stay: Wanaka is your nearest town, only 40 minutes away. Punching above its weight for fun, this town has a few sweet hostels, a lounge chair cinema and a good pub by the lake, even a skatepark for the gnarlies. Check out the Southern Lakes section on page 101 for more details.

Charge it: Lift passes are $99 for a full day or $65 for a half-day. Three-, five- and 10-day passes are $255, $400 and $700 respectively. Board, boots and lift pass combo for $125 per day.

More infowww.treblecone.co.nz



Photo: Getty