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Snow comes to Mt Maunganui in the height of summer

Snow comes to Mt Maunganui in the height of summer

MT MAUNGANUI, JANUARY 13 2018: Mt Ruapehu is sharing its love of snow and delivering it to Mt Maunganui beach this summer.

A massive snow dump is happening at 10am on Saturday morning (today) when a 60-tonne truck will travel approximately 260km to deliver two trailers of snow from Mt Ruapehu to the edge of Mount Drury Reserve along the beachfront.

Mt Ruapehu Marketing Manager Matt McIvor says, "Our new Snow Factory up at Whakapapa has been working overtime, pumping out snow throughout the night to give beach lovers an unexpected taste of winter a few months early.

"No doubt there will be lots of snow angels and snowmen building from locals and holiday makers. We thought it would be a unique and exciting way to offer everyone a snow experience in the middle of summer while our season passes are on sale. It’s all about helping people discover how much fun snow brings, so hopefully they’ll be keen to ramp up that fun even more on a snowboard or pair of skis this winter, " Matt says.

It's thanks to this new snow making technology that Whakapapa was the first commercial ski area to open for the season in New Zealand last year on June 3. Mt Ruapehu is planning to do the same this year on Queen's Birthday Weekend (June 2) and give skiers and snowboarders the longest winter season in New Zealand, operating until Labour Weekend in late October. Snow fun continues up the mountain through the summer months with an all new sledding slope in Whakapapa’s base area.

Ruapehu Alpine Lifts (RAL) installed the Snow Factory at the beginning of the 2017 ski season and it's New Zealand’s first all-weather snow making machine, capable of making snow in temperatures of up to 25 degrees Celsius.

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