Mt. Hutt sees record season
Mt Hutt in Canterbury, New Zealand, has set an all-time visitor numbers record since the mountain opened 45 years ago in 1973.
However the success has been put down to pricing rather than snow, as total snowfall for the season was reported to be one of the two lowest stats of the past a 20 years, since winter 1998.
“The results are quite an achievement given the lack of natural snow this season,” Mt Hutt Ski Area Manager James McKenzie told local media, adding,
“With just 170cm of snow falling from the time we opened through to closing weekend the 2018 winter season turned out to be the second leanest in 20 years, yet the numbers don’t reflect that.
Significant investment in snowmaking last summer was uncannily timely and amazingly effective. Following our pump station upgrade were able to double our output which meant all lifts were running from opening day to the end of the season for the first time ever.
Mt Hutt have announced plans to extend their trail network and increase the snowmaking system for 2019, building a new family fun trail down from the top of the Quad chair to access what is currently under-utilised terrain and offer a mix of fun snow features including rollers, banked turns and a tunnel. It will also be serviced by a new, fully-automated line of snowmaking guns.
The resort also plans to add a new advanced trail out left of the reservoir and move the start of “Race Hill” up to the start of the Mid Towers traverse to extend the length of steep groomed terrain on that side of the basin.
Patrick Thorne, also known as the Snow Hunter, is an industry expert in all technical developments in snow sports. In addition to his work Patrick is also father and knows the importance and fun of kids on snow.