Skip to main content

Home Forums Trip Reports The Gondwanaland TR Part 3: Te Waipounamu

Viewing 13 posts - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)
  • Author
  • #781599

    Parts 1 & 2 covered both Africa and Australia. Next stop NZed.

    This segment will be mostly a scenic photoshow highlighting some of the world-class ski terrain I observed this summer while exploring the Southern Alps. I ended up with very few action photos, but there are a few here worth having a look at.

    The enchantments of Middle Earth certainly lived up to their expectations, land of snowy summits, deep greens, and crystal clear blue waters.

    Some views of NZed’s high ones, Mt. Tasman and Mt. Cook from the west.

    Snow was sparse in NZed this winter, yet nevertheless I got out into it, climbed, toured, and found good snow.

    I returned from a hike in the forest to find a Parrot perched on my split!

    The little guy tried to rip my rack straps off and tried to chew on one of my pucks!

    Later some kiwis would warn me that these wild alpine parrots (Keas) will attack any piece of gear you leave lying around. Rad.

    Terrain continued…

    They say NZ ecology is all about the native birds. I agree. Standing on the beach here is a yellow eyed penguin.

    After beach camping and looking for penguins I returned to the snow.

    Then back to the coast to take in the extraordinary sights.

    And after each session of deep green and blue immersion, back to the mountains for colder campsites and more turns.

    Mt. Cook from the southeast.

    Caroline Face/East Face, Mt. Cook

    Couldn’t help but to throw down for some heli accessed deep pow turns and terrain explorations in the heart of the Alps.

    Tasman from the east

    Followed by more waterside camping and general relaxation in the sun and forests.

    And just a bit more snow before I needed to fly back to Alaska.

    Mt. Aspiring

    I had Aspirations to ride one of the monster west facing super couloirs off the Remarkables. I approached from the resort boundary and looked for something doable from above, in my quest I got lost, socked in by heavy cloud cover. I tried to wait it out for a window, to no avail. As evening set in I picked my way down a fun easterly dog leg route instead.

    It’s probably not a good idea to take your dog ski touring in some parts of NZ these days. The 1080 poison issue is a big deal in New Zealand. As a wildlife management professional, I decided to educate myself on the ins-and-outs of 1080 and it seems to me that NZDOC is trying to do the right thing to save the native birds, against pretty much insurmountable odds.

    I was lucky to score some good powder on this trip. I also rode lots of ice, windboard, sastrugi, and corn. Over the years I have often heard from folks that NZ isn’t worth the bother for ski trips. These folks need to broaden their horizons and realize there is more to riding than just finding perfect easy to access snow. For the hearty and adventurous there are lifetimes of wonderful splitboarding and climbing in NZed.

    At this point I had nearly completed my circumnavigation of the eastern southern hemisphere with my splitboard. I began in Alaska and from there traveled to Frankfurt, stopped in Dubai and took a quick swim in the Indian Ocean, went from there to Johanesburg, made the most out what snow I could find in southern Africa, stopped over in Singapore and went for a hike in the jungle, before arriving in Australia to make powder turns guided by Dreamtime, and finally to NZ and the Southern Alps. Before I jumped on the extended air journey from Aukland to LAX and on to Anchorage I took a few days on the beach to wind down from these two months of seeing the world. If you have made it this far, thanks for viewing. Whenever possible I always like to end a good mountain trip with a wind down on a warm beach. I’ll leave you all with that.

    SS Spring 2015.


    Thanks snowsavage for laboring through the forum complexities. High quality content — very much enjoy seeing new corners of the world through your lens. This cranked my travel itch up to 11.


    Snowsavage always bringing the stoke!


    Wow! That was an amazing trip @snowsavage. I’m so glad you pushed through to post that up.

    Interesting to see the terrain in Australia, but NZ always looks so good. Especially with you flipping between mountains and coastline.


    Thanks for check it out guys. You being stoked makes all the hassles of getting these posted worth it.

    Cbalke, I am still looking for your help (or anyone who can help me, BCRider?)…Did you see my note to you in “Test”?

    I tried to post Part 1to this series and it wont post, but the domain for the segment is being hosted somewhere(??) because it wont let me re-post it. I get a message that says “Error–Duplicate Topic”…I even have a link to Part 1 but there is nothing there and cannot find it on the site. Please help.

    Here is the link;

    I need to delete this and start over.

    Yeh, NZ is 1000 lifetimes of snowboarding, especially if you are willing to hike for it via long approaches. It is world-class there for sure, add the sub-tropical side of things and you’ve got a real slice of heaven.

    South Island Split

    Absolutely awesome stuff Snow Savage. Cool to see you were checking some of the slightly more obscure spots for riding around NZ.
    Always cool to see your country through someone else’s perspective. Great photos, especially of the Main Divide peaks and West Coast Neves from the West Coast.


    Thanks for the Stoke in a lack luster season (PNW). Words concise and fitting for the images. As always your trip reports are entertaining, informing, and have depth.

    Reading the adventures of a well traveled, BC crushing, anthropologist in the South Pacific. Made me think, ” Boy this cat would enjoy Aldous Huxley’s ISLAND”.

    Thanks Man,



    Thanks again Snowsavage for posting another awesome adventure!


    Thanks much guys for checking out my pics.

    southislandsplit- happy you liked the photos, feel free to share them if you’d like. Your homeland is a very photogenic place! I got really into using my camera there 🙂 . You have 10,000 lifetimes worth of bc snow adventures on your island, absolutely phenomenal place.

    chronicracing – thank you man, much appreciated. I’ll have to check out that book. Sounds like a good read for my next travel plan.

    South Island Split

    Snowsavage – I have already been sharing your pics about. Haha.

    As for a lifetimes worth of snowboarding adventures…Way too many. The hit list only seems to get bigger rather than smaller each year.


    Awesome TR!!!


    Savage! What a trip! beautiful photos and write up. And you got the goods in NZ! Thanks for sharing the stoke


    Rad pics man, as South island split said, its so rad to see your own country through someone elses eyes!!

    As far as those couloirs on the front face of the Remarks go, i dont think they get ridden very often, There is one directly below the lookout at the top of the Shadow basin called Lookout Couloir which claimed a life a while back. I know one of the ones further around near Double cone was skied 2 years ago and with the amount of insane people that live in queenstown, some of the other ones probably get skied more often than you hear about. In fact i remember hearing the choppers hovering over the face a few years back as two gapers had decided it was quicker to ski down to the bottom rather than take the bus!
    That couloir you did ride however is called Diangulator i believe. I think it goes Escalator, Elevator, Diangulator, Terminator, Exterminator. There are probably a couple more in there!!

Viewing 13 posts - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.