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Previous Issues:
Issue 1 - 28 March 2007
Issue 2 - 11 April 2007

Kiwi Outdoors Centre
18 Ariki Street,  New Plymouth
Phone and Fax (06) 7584152

ISSUE 3            WEDNESDAY 25 APRIL 2007 ....

The south easterly air flow has cooled the air temperature off somewhat and winter feels not far away. Manganui Ski Area is getting primed ready for action. There is still plenty to do. Check out the Working Bee Schedule and see if you can give the field a day to help in getting us all set for 2007...

Check out the Kiwi Outdoors Centre MASSIVE 3 DAY  SKI HARDWARE AND CLOTHING SALE - Friday to Sunday 11-13 May.
More details in SNIPPETS OF INTEREST below...

In this issue:

Lars Binsbergen
17 Curtis St. Okato
phone 06 7524424
Major Sponsor
of the SMC E-newsletter

Contact Us:
06-757 9880
New Plymouth

Contact Us:
06-759 9943 bus
06-752 7697 a/h

GOINGS ON’ Around the Manganui Ski Area

The Manganui Ski Area NEW Website

The new website went live on Sunday 15 April.
We hope you enjoy the new format.
We still have more development to come. An an accommodation booking enquiry form, and an upgrade of the Snow Report page, are the next scheduled developments.
We are always on the lookout for pictures/digi video to add to our gallery, so feel free to email them to, and we will post them up there. Thanks to those who have sent in pics so far.

Snow.Co Snow Reports

New for 2007, Ski Area snow reports will be able to be accessed on your mobile phone WAP browser or received via SMS messaging. The improvement is that these reports will be comprehensive and carry the same data as that displayed on the Snow.Co snow report website.
We'll let you know when they are operational and what the SMS text code is for Manganui (cost will be approx 20c per SMS message).

SMC Junior Ski Racing and Training Ski Swap

The SMC Ski Swap is set for Thursday 17th May 6pm at the New Plymouth Yacht Club, Ngamotu Beach New Plymouth. Please note that this year we have shifted the event to a Thursday to avoid clashes with other codes.

$10 for Sellers. Gold coin donation at the door. All proceeds from the evening go to the SMC Junior Ski Racing and Training program, its main fundraiser for the season.

For further details contact:
Clive Saleman on 752 7140, m 027-290 6636.

This will also be the last chance to purchase your SMC season passes at the normal rate. Payment can be made on the night.

Avalanche Awareness Course

Run by the NZ Mountain Safety Council. This course starts in the classroom and then moves out onto the mountain.

Avalanche Awareness courses are for skiers, snowboarders and climbers, and provide a first step to gaining an appreciation of the avalanche phenomenon and what is needed to make decisions about personal safety when travelling in avalanche terrain. The Avalanche Awareness course involves both a lecture and a field day and covers:

  • Mountain weather
  • Identification of avalanche terrain
  • Basic route finding and decision making
  • Companion rescue
  • Safety equipment (including use of transceivers)

This course is scheduled to be held locally, with Todd Cations-Velvin the instructor. For an expression of interest in the course and further details, contact Todd Cations-Velvin on 021-704 014, e-mail 

Proud to be supporting the Stratford Mountain Club.
Buying or selling Real Estate, call Clive Saleman AREINZ
06-758 7113 b/h
06-752 7140 a/h
027-290 6636 m

Mountain House Motor Lodge

Taranaki's Swiss Alpine Restaurant and Accommodation

Contact Us:
0800 Mountain
0800-66 86 82
06-765 6100
Pembroke Rd, Stratford





Thanks to all who have participated so far in the Working bees. Sunday just gone saw a huge team on the field doing varied tasks such as mowing the T-bar, repairing erosion hot spots on the T-bar, working on top tow fencing and wash-out, Manganui Lodge roof cleats, maintenance on flying fox, to name a few.
Thanks again.

If you are keen in assisting in one of the scheduled working bees contact the organisers below or just turn up on the day.




Working Bee

March 4 Mark Braddock Ben- Plummer Butt 7527039 7527050 As per list in lodge
March 18 Phil Powell Brett Manning 7527039 7527050 As per list in lodge
March 25 Karl Lapwood Rhys Williams    
April 1 Chris Burr 7578668  
April 15 Dirk Schmidt-Rittershaus Lars Binsbergen 7527488 7524424 Lodge inside maintenance as per list
April 22 Brooke Fletcher Chris Burr 7588879 7578668 General lower field clean up and Top Tow fences and come back trails
April 29 Mario Padrutt Mitchell Dyer 7550236 7513927 Put T’s on T-Bar, learners tow out, service T-Bar, check Skidoo/Groomer
May 6 Todd Velvin   Warwick Brown Building & Ski Patrol
May 13 Chris Burr Dave Smithers 7578668 7527728 Set up & stock Canteen gorge track, drains and general work


Schedule repeats until work completed    

Remember that the voluntary work doesn't go unrewarded! A working bee gets you a working bee ticket, that can be exchanged for a lift pass, or accommodation at the Manganui Lodge, should you already hold an SMC season pass.


With the colder months approaching and skiing just around the corner the working bees have shifted into another gear. There was an excellent turn out for Sundays working bee April 22 with perfect weather a huge amount was achieved, Phil has started the mowing and he will hopefully have that completed over a couple of weekends weather permitting, the learners tow is out and the T bar is nearly ready to go, we just have to get the wire rope X-rayed, then the T's can go on the first weekend of May, then the final engineers report can be completed.

The top Tow still needs a good crew up there to help Fletch and Biggy get the fencing done, towers supported safety checked, rubbish removed. We will be air lifting in the necessary material so labour is the key component.
All in all everything is progressing well so come on up each Sunday until all the work is completed or the snow arrives.

The club is actively seeking young adults who have a strong interest in safety services and ski field management to be this years recipient of the George W Mason Trust scholarship. This is a fantastic opportunity for those with an interest in all aspects of ski field safety and management. The successful applicant we be expected to be involved in all aspects of management as well as attending courses and workshops on the mountain or at other locations outside our region if required. Those wishing to apply should write or e mail the secretary of the SMC as soon as possible, this is a great opportunity for those who have a desire to follow a career in an alpine environment.

Chris Burr

Upcoming Events…

Sunday 29 April 07- Working Bee

Friday to Sunday 11-13 May 07
the Kiwi Outdoors Centre

Thursday 17 May 07 - SMC Ski Swap



It is the busy time of year for the SMC Committee. Below are just a few issues we are working on…

  • Groomer re-housed in Manganui Lodge Basement
  • Mowing of T-bar area
  • General Manganui Lodge maintenance
  • Getting field ready for upcoming season (Adding flying fox audible operational horn, lower and upper field maintenance, etc)
  • Identifying maintenance required and purchasing any parts and tools required to complete.
  • Compiling maintenance registers for all SMC machinery
  • Recruiting staff for the 2007 Season
  • Sourcing new Ski Area Staff uniforms
  • Updating the SMC 10-year plan

Images of 2006…

Henry Saleman, by Five Dollar Hut, Top Tow

Top Tow, Five Dollar Hut comfort sofa, June 20th

Flying Fox and Mt. Taranaki shadow, June 20th



We’re bringing you a specialist team
from Ski and Camp in Wellington, to give you great selection and service.
Boot fitting and foot bed moulding service available

11th, 12th, 13th MAY 2007

Columbia & Convert Jackets & Pants

50% OFF
Smith Goggles

UP TO 25% OFF . . .
Dynastar Skis
Volkl Skis
Fischer Skis
Nordica Boots and Skis
Rossignol Boots and Skis
Technica Boots

Kiwi Outdoors Centre
18 Ariki Street,  New Plymouth
Phone and Fax (06) 7584152

SunKid Constructs Austria's Longest Covered Conveyor in Ötscher, Lower Austria

Up until recently guests to the winter sport region situated at the foot of the Ötscher ski area could only ski or snowboard, since there was no adequate means of transporting the latest new trendy snow sports equipment.
However, the resort management was keen to attract non-skiers and non-snowboarders to the family-friendly resort.
The key to this was the creation of a transport solution which would enable the swift and safe transport of not only skiers and snowboarders but also pedestrians, modern snow sports equipment, buggies, wheelchairs… basically everything imaginable!

An additional advantage of this step is that the former slope along which the draglift led no longer has to be covered with artificial snow, thereby making the facility and surrounding area a round-the-year attraction able to be used in all weather conditions.
The conveyor is also used to transport guests back to the nearby car park.

Head of the lift infrastructure in the region, Herbert Nutz, comments:
“The Wonder Carpet suits our needs perfectly. When it came to deciding whether or not to install a conveyor, the ability to transport absolutely everything and the high maximum transport capacity of the facility were decisive. The fact that the lift can transport 1,440 people per hour is extremely useful, especially when it comes to transporting guests back to the car park. We are very pleased indeed with our SunKid Wonder Carpet“.

The 162 metre Wonder Carpet with a running width of 75cm was fitted with a conveyor cover along its entire length, thereby protecting guests from strong winds and all forms of precipitation.

The conveyor was also equipped with the innovative new ‘Radius’ exit technology system from SunKid. This radical new design brings a whole new approach to getting off at the end of the conveyor. At the end of the lift, the guest can get off the conveyor on either the left or right-hand side. This part of the conveyor has a slightly convex form (hence the name Radius) which means that the guest can simply swing his or her winter sports equipment (skis, snowboards etc.) gently to the side when at the highest point of this concave curve, aided by the fact that there is only a small contact surface between the belt and the equipment. There are also hand rails on both sides to help guests to hold on and turn to the side when getting off.

Lars Binsbergen
17 Curtis St. Okato
phone 06 7524424


















Media & Marketing Contacts

If you have a question regarding marketing or press related issues please contact:

SMC Media/Website
Justin Keenan

Contact Us:
ph 06-759 6448 b/h
ph 06 752 7034 a/h
PO Box 3271
New Plymouth

Send Us Your Work

After your visit to Manganui Ski Area, please send us a copy of your finished or any other unused work.  Manganui would appreciate any photos, articles, film/video or other media that you have for our own library and files. 


Cheese Fondue and Ski Racing
By Lars Binsbergen

When you have family on the other side of the world, you don't just organize a quick Sunday roast.
But when you have family in Switzerland and a bit of a fascination with sliding on white stuff, then the long journey is always worth it.
Even when all the reports before you leave say that europe is having the warmest winter in a million years.
But with flights already long booked and 5 years since our last visit we were getting on that plane regardless.

On the 7th of January we were picked up from Zurich airport in the regional ski team van. Plenty of room for all, and gear.
Then the final part of the journey to the base of the alps is a 1 1/2 hour drive to Buochs on Lake Lucerne at 400m above sea level.
Lenny aged 5 got a little over excited with the first meeting of his cousins in the back seat of the van, and turned up to the grand welcome at our final destination with a huge bleeding nose. He was handed to his waiting grandmothers arms covered in claret.

We had timed our holiday in between the christmas / new year crowds and the major punter attack in February. The locals refer to this as the "January gap".
The decision was made on day 1 to purchase seasons passes on a mountain called Titlis, because of the high altitude lifts, going up to 3000 m.

The snow at this altitude was great with a few freshies in between the groomed runs.

The T bar at the top of the mountain sits on a glacier, and is open all year round.
A 20 tonne digger is used every few months to re-aline the towers because of the ever moving ice.

The kids learned how serious the swiss cousins were at ski racing. Each had 4 pair of skis, bent poles, back braces, and any other 'tools not toys' to make you go really fast !
Gate training was run on Wednesday afternoons as part of the school program. Saturday more gate training and Sunday either a race or more gate training.
Finnley though was more intent on showing his cousins how to get air.

It's important to remember that the swiss take skiing about as seriously as Taranaki takes dairy farming.

On our second week the blue skies gave way to wind and rain, and most unusually, rain up to 2000 m.
That's pretty normal in Taranaki but unheard of in europe in January. Then it cleared, and froze like Taranaki boiler plate.
A coach from the local ski club with a bunch of 6 year old kids decided to leave the groomed run and ski off piste.
One 6 year old girl took a big slide on the ice. Comparable to sliding from the top of the top tow, down the Manganui bluffs and ending up at the head of the gorge.
Sadly she lost her life.
A bitter twist was that the coach was the young girls uncle.
An investigation was launched and a charge of manslaughter was laid.

Week 3 and finally a good dump of fresh snow and a major drop in temperature. Skiing at 3000 m. at 25 degrees minus is not as groovy as it sounds.

Boards and skis get really sticky at these low temperatures, and gliding on cat tracks is very hard work. At least it keeps you warm.
All the chair lifts here had clear plastic hoods that pulled right down to your knees. A great thing for keeping warm and I reckon for preventing injuries.
Also upholstered seats and footrests.
Lift ticket prices in europe are surprisingly cheap for the goods on offer. A day pass at a major resort costing around $55 NZ.

Our 5 week stay had come to an end, and the last night there was spent in typical swiss style, watching the world champs in Sweden, womans giant slalom, eating cheese fondue, and a glass of schnapps. 

Advertising/Sponsorship with SMC

SMC is always open to and interested in advertising or sponsorship from companies, organizations and clubs for winter and summer opportunities. We appreciate any offers for potential sponsors and are always looking for other organisations, companies and clubs that might make a good fit for SMC and our guests.

If your company, organisation or club is interested in submitting a proposal please feel free to submit it to:

Subject: Advertising/Sponsorship Proposals

If you would like to post a classified advert (buy/sell gear etc), please post it on the 'Garage Sale' page of our website.


Troy George (in there somewhere), Top Tow, 2006

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SMC Management
© copyright 2007 - Stratford Mountain Club