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It's Snow Time! Mt Ruapehu To Open This Weekend


News release: 12 June 2008

It's Snow Time! Mt Ruapehu To Open This Weekend


-Good conditions lead to early opening-

Ruapehu Alpine Lifts, operators of Turoa and Whakapapa, announced today that both Ski Areas will open on Saturday 14 June - the earliest opening since the winter of 1992.

Whakapapa will open with Happy Valley beginners' area and will also offer sightseeing chairlift rides to New Zealand's highest café Knoll Ridge (weather permitting).

At Turoa the Alpine Meadow beginners' area will open. TVNZ's What Now programme will be broadcasting live from Turoa on Sunday 15 June from 8am.

Both Whakapapa and Turoa ski areas have had good snowmaking conditions over the last week with cold temperatures and low humidity.

Mt Ruapehu marketing manager, Mike Smith says snowmaking and good natural snowfalls are building the bases on the upper slopes.

"Early indications are very positive for the 2008 season, and it is fantastic to be opening earlier than in previous years," says Mr Smith.

"One or two good natural snowfalls on the upper slopes will allow groomers to start making trails and more lifts to open over the next couple of weeks."

Mr Smith says the Mt Ruapehu team is all set to welcome skiers and boarders to the slopes.

"Our new staff members have completed their induction and training and can't wait to start work on Saturday."

During opening weekend lift pass prices for both ski areas will be $30 for adults and $18 for youths (18 and under). All rental equipment along with Discover Ski and Snowboard packages will be available from both areas and are priced from $85 for adults and $60 for youth.

For snow reports and more information about Mt Ruapehu visit www.mtruapehu.com

ENDS

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