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By Drew Gibson
From Frisco, CO
Mar 24, 2012
So I'm moving to New Zealand for work come May/June. I'll be in the Arthur's Pass area without much time to travel about. I'm bringing some basic alpine gear for work, but what's around? We'll say my job is snow intensive, so I'll have ski mountaineering gear as well. Any ice that time of year? Alpine? I don't know much about the area so any help would be great. Like I said I'm going to be pretty busy with work but I'd like to at least try to get a grasp on the area. Thanks in advance.

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By Ryan Williams
Administrator
From London (sort of)
Mar 24, 2012
El Chorro
If I remember correctly, many of the more serious undertakings are farther south. But the weather can get pretty wild down there... I'm sure you can find plenty of adventures in those mountains.

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By Ryan Williams
Administrator
From London (sort of)
Mar 24, 2012
El Chorro
Sorry, I guess that wasn't much help.

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By Graham Johnson
Mar 29, 2012
I just moved away from NZ after living there for 6 years. There is quite a bit in Arthur's Pass - actually, for a climber it's the ideal spot. The best climbing NZ has to offer is at Castle Hill - about 30 minutes towards Christchurch from the "town" of Arthur's Pass. Amazing bouldering (and I don't really like bouldering). You will be able to boulder just about all year 'round
Not really any ice to speak of in Arthur's Pass (or the rest of NZ for that matter).

You may know this but "Arthur's Pass" is really two places - one the town of Arthur's pass that is a little more than a few (50?) houses and a few coffee shops/tourist traps and a train station - and the other is Arthur's pass National Park - which is huge, and covers an area from basically graymouth (town on the west coast) and Springfield (town near christchurch)

In May/June this will be the start of winter - there will be some alpine climbing and tramping around Arthur's Pass (Mt. Rolleston, some "alpine routes" in temple basin etc...) and there are about 6 ski hills in Arthur's pass itself.

websites:
softrock.co.nz/mg/index.php
www.mojozone.co.nz

things to be prepared for:
it is very damp in the homes in NZ, and most of them are not insulated at all (even in cold places like Arthur's Pass). Clothes dryers are also very uncommon. Most people hang their clothes on a line outside or dry them by the fire (which may be wood or coal). Sounds fine except, in a damp house, things rarely get fully dry and may even get wet again just from condensation. It's (no joke) not unheard of for clothes to go moldy.
it rains all the time. AP is *just* over the rainshadow from the west coast = rain.
gear is absurdly expensive. don't buy anything there

any other questions, ask away

FLAG
By Graham Johnson
Mar 29, 2012
I should also add that if you have any old gear that's just sitting around, NZ is the place to sell it. Especially old skins and ice screws.
Your dull, worthless in the US, ice screws will get snapped up for $30 each for sure.

FLAG
By Drew Gibson
From Frisco, CO
Mar 31, 2012
Thanks for that info. I'll actually be living at Temple Basin for work. I won't be getting out much to climb or really do anything other than ski, but I'm going to try.

FLAG
By SendaGorilla
From Boulder
Mar 31, 2012
I just couldn't help saying that CASTLE HILL is one of (if not The Most) magical places on earth!!

Spent about a year in NZ biking, climbing, hiking, skiiing, surfing....My FAVORITE part was, BY FAR, Castle Hill.

Aaaaahhh the memories!

How I miss you N Zed.

FLAG


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