The Week What Was In Wanaka – Week Eight

Posted: September 4, 2010 in Course Diaries

Welcome back to Wanaka where we’ve had another great week.  It started last Saturday with quite a few  sore heads after a big night out.  With big snowstorms up the hill and rain down in town, most stayed in and watched movies for the day before heading out in the evening.

Sunday dawned a beautiful day so some headed up to Cardrona to practice for the looming exams and make the most of the freshies.  Some went to Queenstown for the day while others continued to rest the legs to prepare for the week ahead. We had a group meal at Uncle Mike’s BBQ followed by a couple of ales in the Bullock Bar before turning in for an early night.

Monday was a hard day for the students – the first of several this week, it turned out!  It was a total white out all day with some snow showers.  Due to the zero vis, most of the day was spent in the classroom going over lesson plans and teaching methods, followed by even more classroom time in the evening for all students. At least school was broken up by some hearty burgers at The Venue.

Another white out awaited us on Tuesday but with lots of fresh snow and deep powder to play in. More Level 2  progression and freshie hunting for some lucky groups.  Most headed out for a few drinks that evening and ended up rocking the dance floor of Mint Bar after a few tequilas!

Wednesday was the last freestyle day for the season which saw lots of happy students with the sun shining and not a cloud to be seen.  Fresh snow from the previous two days made for great conditions for the skiers during their race training.  The boarders spent most of the day hitting a homemade kicker in the powder.  A few guys pulled off some new tricks but hats off to James for landing some speccy back flips! Some of the skiers also built a kicker and mastered 360s after a few crashes in the powder and all in all, it was a great day.  Many left the hill feeling so invincible they felt compelled to enter the pool comp at HQ in the evening.  Unfortunately their luck ran out and everyone was knocked out in the first round.  Clearly, successful completion of a 360 has little to do in playing good pool!  Good effort though Kirk, Campbell and James.

More bad weather on Thursday and sadly, the mountain almost didn’t open due to strong winds and poor vis.  It calmed throughout the day and eventually cleared enough for everyone to get back into working hard on Level 2 progressions for the approaching exams, lots of riding improvement and practice teaches.  Everyone had a good day and settled in for an early night at the apartments.

Come Friday, it was Rhona’s birthday.  Everyone piled onto the bus and headed towards Cardies but unfortunately, the mountain was closed because of the terrible weather – strong winds, zero vis and heavy snow falls. This resulted in the students all going to school for the day and spending a few hours in the classrooms.  We headed out in the evening to celebrate Rhona’s birthday after some drinks and cupcakes at the apartments.  Well done Bex and Becca – excellent baking!

Saturday morning brought with it news of a strong earthquake of 7.0 up in Christchurch – buildings down, roads ripped up, 75% of the power out and water mains leaking all over town.  We certainly felt things down here in Wanaka over 400 kilometres away as it rumbled through at about 4.30am but no damage or injury to report.  And it goes a  long way to explaining why New Zealand’s other nickname beyond “Land of the Long White Cloud” is “The Shaky Isles”.  The north island sits on the Pacific plate and the South Island sits on the Australia plate and the two just keep bumping and grinding into each other, sometimes with devastating results.  While no one was injured or killed in Christchurch, damage is extensive and it’s going to take a lot of time and a lot of money to recover.  It’s such an awesome little country that we’ve come to love so much so quickly we can but wish them well with the rebuilding.

As always, there are some pics of what we’ve been up to.  Click on the link below and don’t forget – if you want to see who’s who at the zoo, click on “Show info” in the top right hand corner of the screen: PHOTOS

All the best for a great week.  Think of us as we enter the last week of training before the L2 exams next week.



  1. snowskool says:

    Look out for a snow yeti in the photo stream – did you see him?

  2. snowboarding says:

    great snowboarding photos!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s