Awakino Trail Guide
Awakino is a club-operated field that opens up for group bookings during the weekends. It's easterly aspect means that it is sheltered from most weather and picks up good dumps from southerlies.
Awakino is a club-operated ski area located high up the St Marys Range, near Kurow in the Waitaki Valley. When you arrive you get the impression that it’s a little different, some use the term ‘old-school’. In essence there’s a place to stay, a mountain to ski and two tows to gain easy vertical credits, what else does one need? The beauty of the ski area is its club charm, touring options and how remarkably unchanged it’s remained over the years.
For the mechanically minded you’ll get a kick out of the main tow, it’s a tractor in a container and has been shuttling people up the mountain since Adam was a cowboy. If you’re not equipped with a 4WD it’s best to phone in advance and one of the clubbies can come down and pick you up. The best part, it’s quiet. A busy day means that you’ll be sharing the mountain with no more than 20-30 people.
For those in the know, Awakino is renowned for deep wind-blown powder; fantastic terrain suiting intermediate to advanced riders; and its pioneering spirit. As it’s generally only open on weekends any snowfall during the week remains untracked, ready to be ripped when your working week is over.
Terrain and Weather Tip
The field has many aspects, meaning you can ride in all sorts of snow conditions on one day. Grooming is limited to an occasional firing up of the vintage 1980s Kassbohrer, so don’t expect corduroy runs. Club members are happy to show you the best places to go, but bring full avalanche gear because much of the good terrain is out of bounds.
Keep an eye on their website for updates on long weekend openings.
Book the accommodation, it’s essential to getting enough numbers for the field to open.
For the Early Season skiers: Pray for the big easterly dump.
For the Curious: Pack your touring gear and skin up Te Kohurau, the highest point on the St Marys Range at 2010m.
Main Lifts 2x Rope Tows
Learner Lifts 1x Rope Tow
Terrain Park Glacier Basin is one giant TP
Top Elevation 1880m
Bottom Elevation 1450m
Skiable Terrain 100 hectares
Lessons Occasionally by arrangement
Access 4WD (2WD to bottom car park)
Day Pass Rates
Draw Card: Stay in the lodge and ride all weekend.
Phone (David Campbell): +64 21 0243 9273
The Chill Mountains
In 2019 The Chill6 accesses the 6 Ski Areas in the Selwyn District; Porters, Cheeseman, Broken River, Craigieburn Valley, Temple Basin and Mt Olympus.
The Chill12 accesses the six ski areas above plus Rainbow, Hanmer Springs, Mt Lyford, Fox Peak, Mt Dobson and Awakino.
The Chill Travel Pass accesses the 12 mountains on the Chill12 Pass as well as Christchurch Adventure Park. Up to two clips on the Chill Travel Pass can be used at Porters and/or CAP.
The Chill Regions/Accommodation
Find out more about where to stay and play in the regions around the Chill Mountains. From Nelson Lakes & Marlborough in the North down to Queenstown & Wanaka in the South. In between there's Kaikoura and Hanmer Springs, Sensational Selwyn, the township of Methven, the Mackenzie District and Waitaki Valley and of course the home of Chill, Christchurch City. Here we share places to stay, eat, shop and explore to help plan your adventure in the Southern Alps.