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NZSki farewells ski area manager

November 27 2012

NZSki farewells ski area manager

Queenstown-based ski area company NZSki has announced that Coronet Peak ski area manager Hamish McCrostie is to leave the company on December 21.

NZSki CEO James Coddington said it was a “sad day” to have to farewell one of its longest-serving staff members in the history of the company, after 32 years.

Hamish began skiing at Coronet Peak in 1961 as a three-year old, and as a 21-year-old took on his first role in the industry as a patroller at Tekapo ski field in 1979. He started with the Mt Cook Company a year later as a patroller at Coronet Peak.

Mr McCrostie said the time had come to leave the industry and pursue other challenges.

Mr McCrostie said he felt “immensely proud” to have been able to contribute to such a wonderful industry for so long.

“I’m immensely proud of what I’ve achieved and it’s been an awesome time. I’ve met and worked with lots of great people, made some lifelong friends, and travelled around the world with the industry.

“It’s certainly been a big part of my life and I’m looking forward to continuing my passion for skiing as a ‘keen local’.”

In 1985 Mr McCrostie was appointed as head of the Patrol department at the Remarkables Ski Area in its opening year, where he set up and developed the new area’s safety systems and was a main driver in the development of the avalanche safety programme. He did such a good job he was later appointed as the Patrol Manager for both Coronet Peak and Remarks in 1989.

In 1995 he was appointed ski area manager at The Remarkables. He oversaw significant development and growth in his time there, particularly in the family and freestyle markets with the tube park, terrain parks, trail and snowmaking developments, and a new chairlift.

In 2007 he became ski area manager at Coronet Peak. In this role he has been heavily involved in Coronet Peak’s significant period of development with a new base building, full snowmaking automation and development, as well as a new chairlift and trail developments. He has also overseen significant growth and improvements to operational delivery and service quality.

Mr Coddington said Mr McCrostie had not only contributed hugely to NZSki during his 32-year career, but had also made a significant contribution to the New Zealand ski industry.

“He served on the NZ Mountain Safety Council’s Snow and Avalanche Advisory Committee from 1985 until 2010, the last six of those as convener,” said Mr Coddington.

Mr McCrostie sat on the MSC board for 2009/2010, and was instrumental in the development of national avalanche education programmes that are recognised internationally and are industry standard today.

“He also set up the pilot courses for pre-hospital emergency care with the old National Ambulance Officers’ training school, now a standard in our adventure tourism industry, and is currently a board member of Snow Sports New Zealand, a role he will continue with.”

Mr Coddington said the NZSki board and every staff member who had the privilege in working with him over the years would be sad to see him go.

“We thank him very much for his enthusiasm, hard work and leadership, and will very much miss the stories and sense of humour,” he said.

“Above all else we’ll miss Hamish’s passion for the industry he gave so much to. We really wish him all the very best in the next phase of his career and life and can’t wait to have him back on our mountains with his family as guests!”


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