Ski Resort Craigieburn Valley Ski Area in South Canterbury: Position on map

Craigieburn Valley Ski Area

Trail Map Craigieburn Valley Ski Area

The Ski Resort

Craigieburn Valley Ski Area is a ski resort located in the heart of the Southern Alps of New Zealand's South Island, a little more over 100 km west from Christchurch. Craigieburn is suited to intermediate and advanced skiers, featuring a vertical rise of 503 m, serviced by three high capacity rope tows, and 600 hectares of skiable terrain with steep narrow chutes and wide open powder bowls. Adjacent to the Broken River Ski Area, with which it shares a ski pass system, it is the base for ski touring trips.

Backcountry Experience

Unlike other New Zealand ski resorts, Craigieburn is not home to chairlifts, ski rental, gondolas, snow grooming, snow-making facilities, nice restaurants, or even spas. Rather, it is a backcountry experience that has no equal. Run by club members only, Craigieburn is a non-profit organization solely existing for the purpose of skiing and snowboarding. Straddling two ridge lines and valleys, the ski field and its varied, challenging terrain are popular with snow addicts from all over the globe. Keep your local friends close, as they usually know the hidden gems the tourists won't find.

Day Lodge Café & Accommodation

The Day Lodge Café serves lunches and snacks, such as hamburgers, pies, and hot beverages like espresso coffee. Providing breathtaking 360° views over the ski resort with a generous sun deck, the inside holds a cosy retreat with a fireplace. We recommend staying in the cosy slope-side accommodation: The two cosy and comfy alpine lodges right off the snow are a highlight of any visit to the ski resort. As mentioned before, there are no hotels, spas or shopping options; however, the outstanding social atmosphere at Craigieburn definitely makes up for it.


Interesting facts

  • Offering 988 acres of slopes and terrain, Craigieburn Valley Ski Area is among the 5 largest Ski Resorts in New Zealand.
  • Craigieburn Valley Ski Area is among the 5 best rated Ski Resorts in Canterbury.
  • The vertical drop from summit to base is 1650 ft. The average difference in altitude between base and summit of Ski Resorts in New Zealand is 1545 ft. The highest point of the track is 5942 ft above sea level.
  • Snow coverage is usually best during August, offering an average snow depth of 46 " at summit elevation and 12 " at the base.
  • Craigieburn Valley Ski Area features 26 sunny days on average per season. The average for all ski Resorts in New Zealand is 20 sunny days. August is the sunniest month with an average of 13 sunny days. This makes the ski resort one of the 10 sunniest in New Zealand.


Craigieburn Valley Ski Area (New Zealand): When It Snows
Craigieburn Valley Ski Area (New Zealand): Terrain
Craigieburn Valley Ski Area (New Zealand): The Top Tow Realignment Project
Ski New Zealand - Craigieburn Valley Ski Area 2019
Craigieburn Valley Ski Area 2022 | Ski New Zealand

Getting here

Situated about 1.5 hours from Christchurch on Highway 73, Craigieburn lies in the heart of the Southern Alps. Appr. 9 km after Castle Hill Village you take a turn towards the ski resort. The access road is called Craigieburn Valley Ski Area and is accessible for all motor vehicles except for camper vans which are to be parked at the base of the access road. If you turn off too early, you will end up at Broken River Ski Area. Anyways, make sure to carry chains at all times. 

About the author
last update on May 6, 2024
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Craigieburn Valley Ski Area
Craigieburn Forest Park Field Rd
Phone+64 3 318 8711


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Mountain Stats

Elevation4291 ft - 5942 ft
Opening DayJul 20, 2024
Closing DayOct 6, 2024
Capacity 1200 Persons/Hr.
Hours9:30 AM - 4:00 PM


Total 3

Skiable Terrain

6.2 miles
Green Circle
Blue Squared
Black Diamond
Double Diamond
Overall Slope Length 6.2 miles

Weather (5942 ft)

Open Lifts & Trails


1 day adult NZD110
1 day youth NZD40
1 day child free
All rates & fees