The Ski Resort
Awakino Ski Area is situated high in the St. Marys Range in North Otago, New Zealand. Run by the Waitaki Ski Club, it operates most weekends in the winter season. As queues are unheard of, the slopes are rather uncrowded with a busy day meaning more than 10 skiers or snowboarders. Located in a sunny, north-facing valley with stunning views over the Valley, the ski resort boasts one and a half high-speed rope tows.
Its terrain is suited to all abilities, whether beginner or expert. Known as a timeless place, Awakino represents skiing as it first began, as the resort has little changed from when it was established in the 1940s. Ski touring is available on the ranges just off the ski field boundaries, where fresh powder is waiting to be found.
Home to a 40 bunk main lodge for overnight stays, the ski resort is a perfect mountain getaway for groups of friends or skiers and riders young at heart. Dating back to the earliest days of skiing in New Zealand, the lodge has no cellphone coverage, which is great if you are into spending some offline time. Flush toilets, hot showers, full kitchen facilities, a dining room and outside deck is what to expect here.
- The vertical drop from summit to base is 899 ft. The average difference in altitude between base and summit of Ski Resorts in New Zealand is 1545 ft. Runs and slopes are therefore relatively short. The high point of the ski resort is located at an elevation of 5699 ft.
- The day pass at Awakino Ski Area is NZD55 making it one of the 3 cheapest ski Resorts in New Zealand.
Located near Kurow (0,5 hrs) in the Waitaki Valley, Awakino is a 3.5-4 hrs drive vom Christchurch, about 3 hrs from Queenstown, and 2.5 hrs from Dunedin. To Kurow, take the State Highway 82 or 83. Take Ferguson or Wynyard St to Manse Road, turn right onto Cattle Valley Road and then left on Awakino Skifield Road. Please make sure to leave all gates as you find them on your way up to the ski resort.