Southern Hemisphere Ski Areas Extend 2017 Seasons

STORY BY Patrick Thorne 7th September 2017

Several ski resorts in Australia and New Zealand have announced extended 2017 ski seasons following big snow falls, particularly in August but now also in early September.

Australia

In Australia, where most ski areas usually close by the end of September, both the leading resorts of Perisher and Mt Buller have announced they’re extending their seasons by a week to the weekends of October 7th/8th.  Others are expected to follow suit.  The country has had three major snow storms in the past five weeks and is current claiming the best snow conditions for 17 seasons.

In New Zealand so far Mt Hutt has announced it will extend its season from the planned closing date of October 8th to the 15th after big snowfalls there too.  Again other ski areas are expected to follow suit.  Mt Hotham is pictured above earlier today.

New Zealand

The extended seasons mean resorts in both countries will have ski slopes open during school holiday periods meaning more children and families can get to the snow.

Southern hemisphere season dates vary from country to country.  The two small ski areas in southern Africa, Tiffindell in south Africa and Afriski in Lesotho have already ended their 2017 ski seasons and most South American ski areas close in late September.

Mt Ruapehu in New Zealand usually stays open longest, to the end of October and sometimes in to what they call, “Snowvember.”  This year the resort, usually one of the later to open for the season, in July, has invested in an all-weather snowmaking system, allowing it to open a small area in early June with the first of the southern hemisphere areas to open for the season.

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