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Previous Issues:

Issue 27 - 15 October 2008
Issue 26 - 26 September 2008
Issue 25 - 08 September 2008
Issue 24 - 20 August 2008
Issue 23 - 07 August 2008
Issue 22 - 23 July 2008
Issue 21 - 09 July 2008
Issue 20 - 25 June 2008
Issue 19 - 11 June 2008
Issue 18 - 28 May 2008
Issue 17 - 15 May 2008
Issue 16 - 26 Feb 2008

corner Smart & Riflerange Rds
The Valley Mega Centre,
New Plymouth
ph 7599300

ISSUE 28            FRIDAY 07 NOVEMBER 2008 ....

Welcome to the last edition of the SMC/Manganui e-newsletter for 2008.

With the season now over, we can reflect on the 2008 season.
Can it be described as a sucess? YES!, especially when compared with the low snow season of 2007.

There was plenty of skiing/riding to be had for those that sought it and could get time off work or were able to head up in the weekends. Some days the place was definately humming; a record cash flow day was had, as well as a record snowfall event in August (interestingly, from the North West). As you were aware, some huge rain events were interspersed, as is expected at Mt. Taranaki. That is why our province is so green!

In this issue


New Plymouth on Tuesday 2nd December 2008 at 7:30pm,
meeting to commence at 8pm. Bar is open before and afterwards. All welcome

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

Contact Us:
06-759 4609
New Plymouth

Rent Your Skis Local and avoid the Ruapehu cues!

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

We offer:
• Virus Protection and Internet Security
• Independent Advice and Consulting
• Regular Cleaning and Maintenance
• Upgrades and installations
• Internet and email support
• Hardware & software troubleshooting

Phone: 06 753 7113
Cell: 027 312 2629

GOINGS ON’ Around the Manganui Ski Area

Working Bee List for 2009 and beyond

(subject to committee approval):

• Canteen refit – Redesign for ease of use. Stand up freezer. See Rob or Todd for plan
• Tee Bar lift line – flatten and level out track and place half rounds down. Track needs to be at least 3m wide.
• Towers painted or removed for galvanizing.
• Heli pad next to lodge – This should be part funded by DOC and SAR plus the club. This may be a good time to build a bigger groomer shed underneath the Heli pad.
• Meadows fence – Remove fence and build new one lower down with a comeback trail to the access tow.
• Terrain Park – small lift for rail park location to be decided.
• Terrain Park – rails to have gaps filled by wood - safety issue.
• Move lockers around in basement and add more. Floor plan needs to be developed.
• Build or buy ski and snowboard racks for basement. Ski industries have freestanding stands.
• Boot rack for drying room to make for more space.
• Touch up paint job in lodge where dings and marks are on walls.
• Look at roofing Warrick Brown building. There are small leaks in the roof over office.

(look for some of these to be actioned in working bees this coming working bee period) 


The AGM will be held at the FITZROY SURF CLUB,  BEACH ST,
New Plymouth on Tuesday 2nd December 2008 at 7:30pm,
meeting to commence at 8pm. Bar is open before and afterwards. All welcome
Confirmation of 2007 AGM Minutes
Presentation of the Annual Report / Financial Statement
The 2008 draft Profit & Loss Previous Year Comparison is inserted into this newsletter for your review)
Election of Officers
Election of: Honorary Surgeons, Auditor, and Honorary Solicitor
General Business
Ratification of new job descriptions for management committee, Awards.

The following positions are up this year and nominations are invited for: -
Accommodation Convenor (Lodge)
Lower Lifts
Racing and Training
Safety Services
Ticketing Convenor
A nomination declaration is below to complete if you are interested in standing for the vacant committee positions


Nominations are required to be submitted in writing to SMC, by 22 November.
Nominations can only be taken from the floor at the AGM if there are no written nominations received.

AGM 2008 Nomination Form

I ……………………………………………being a current financial member of the SMC   wish to nominate ……………………………………………….
for the position open for nomination of ………………………………………….. on the SMC Committee.

Proposer …………………..…… Print Name …...……………….…. Signed .……………..… Date

Seconder ………………….…… Print Name …...………………..…. Signed .……………..… Date

Please print, complete above text and post to SMC Committee Nominations,
PO box 3271 New Plymouth

For those of you that are current SMC members, a draft financial statement is heading to you by way of our November mail out newsletter issue.

Clean up day Sunday 23 November - weather permitting...

We just have a bit of tidy up work around the lodge to meet our DoC obligations, and to maintain our pristine area up there...

  • bring in snowboard hits and rails
  • bring in the spring boxes
  • top tow shed clean up
  • general rubbish tidy up
  • fridge swap - bring off fridge in Manganui Lodge (straight swap for one that better fits the space)

All should take 1/2 a day at most if we get 10-15 keen people to help out.


























































2008 Race Report

The Race Department’s season began with organizing and running the Annual Ski and Board Swap which was held a little later than usual in late May at the New Plymouth Yacht Club rooms.  As per 2007 the event was held on a Thursday evening so as to avoid clashing with any Friday night events especially rugby. The evening was well attended and $430 was  netted for the Racing account which was a little less than the previous year.
We took delivery of the new race gates and the new wireless electronic race timing equipment and tested it out with a group of volunteer juniors at the Oakura Skate park and despite the hefty user manuals and multiple options it seemed to be reasonably simple to use. The first real test would be the Taranaki Schools racing after the July Holidays.
A cold stormy patch of weather brought a great snow cover to the t-bar in early July allowing good skiing and riding for the first week of the school holidays and Coach Christina Binsbergen was able to run several days of training and coaching for aspiring racers.
 After the holidays we had a wait for suitable cover to hold the Taranaki Secondary Schools Ski and Snowboard Championships. At last the snow returned and the event was held on July 30 with the following results.

Individual Boys Senior
Skiing: J.Hareb (FDMC) 1, G.Simkin (NPBHS) 2,
Snowboard: Cam Rowlands (NPBHS) 1, T Anderson (NPBHS) 2, S.Hickey (Coastal) 3.
Individual Boys Junior
Skiing: T.Davies (FDMC) 1, Tai Juneau (Spots) 2, H.Saleman (Spots Coll) 3.
Snowboard: C. Rowland (NPBHS) 1, H.Johnson (NPBHS) 2, E.Lawley (NPBHS) 3.
Individual Girls Senior
Skiing: A.Simkin (NPGHS) 1, N.Casares (Spots) 2, A.Brewster (Spots) 3.
Snowboard: S.Chapman (NPGHS) 1, A.Barnett (NPGHS) 2, B.Nolly (SHGC) 3.
Individual Girls Junior
Skiing: J.Simkin (NPGHS) 1, L.Brankin (NPGHS) 2, B.Jones (Hawera HS) 3.
Snowboard: M. Earp (NPGHS) 1.

Teams: NPBHS 142p ts, Spots 138pts, FDMC 125pts

The timing gear worked successfully and this experience showed how to use the equipment better at the next event.

Once again there was a period of bad weather and unsuitable snow conditions which delayed the running of the Taranaki Primary and Intermediate Schools Ski and Snowboard Championships, however the conditions on 20 August were near perfect with the following results.

Intermediate Boys Skiing: M.Hardie Boys (Oakura) 1, R. Young (Highlands Intermediate) 2, Jack Laing-Aitken (FDMC) 3.
Snowboard: K.Raven (Devon Intermediate) 1, A. Kalin (Coastal) 2, B.Deitrich (Devon Intermediate) 3.
Primary Boys Skiing: F.Binsbergen (Coastal) 1, C.Hareb (Omata) 2, I.Hardie Boys (Oakura) 3.
Snowboard: L.Dobbin (Coastal) 1, L.Webster (Woodleigh) 2,
Intermediate Girls Skiing: L.Simkin (Highlands Intermediate) 1, R. Busing (SHGC) 2, M. Williams (SHGC) 3.
Snowboard: T.Willetts (Devon Intermediate) 1, M.Hintz (Ngaere) 2, M.Hickey (Coastal) 3.
Primary Girls Skiing: M.Neeson (Oakura) 1, D.Simkin (7th Day Adventist) 2, H.Harvey(St.Pius) 3.

Daniel and Tapea from Whakapapa Events came over to Manganui for a day and were on hand for setting up the timing gear for this event and much was learnt. The event was a great success for the timing equipment and for SMC with parents teachers and participants enjoying good snow and great racing. Thanks especially to Kiwi Outdoor Centre, Cheapskates, Ski and Sports Center, Vertigo, and The Surf Shop (Del) for their generosity with lots of spot prizes for the kids. Ray Priest from Oakura School did a great job of coordinating the entries and getting info out to schools all around the mountain.

With the Taranaki Schools events successfully completed attention turned to running the Stratford Mountain Club Championships. The snow was by now too patchy on the T-bar but plentiful on the Top Tow so it was decided to run a race up there. Weather conditions were good but with soft snow the race was held on Sunday 31 August with the following results. Each racer had two timed runs added to give the combined times as below.

Christina Binsbergen Senior Female 33.82  34.63  68.45
Henry Saleman Intermediate Male    36.28  38.28  74.56
Todd Velvin Senior Male                  37.38  37.26  74.64
Manuel Padrutt Senior Male             37.66  37.88  75.54
Mario Padrutt Senior Male                38.89  39.04  77.93
Chris Burr Senior Male                     40.38  41.52  81.90
Kevin Rowlands Senior Male           41.29  41.54  82.83
Jay Whitaker Senior Male                43.80  40.90   84.70
Merv Lapwood Senior Male             45.13  46.10   91.23
Mark Braddock Senior Male            45.83  45.83   91.66
Lenny Binsbergen Junior Male        57.99  62.27   120.26
Colin Wood Senior Male                  48.63  73.06   121.69
Gerald Hood Senior Male                 61.04  107.32 168.36

Once again the new race gates and wireless timing equipment proved to be straightforward and reliable to use. So thanks again to the Lion Foundation and New Zealand Community Trust for those.

Also thanks to TSB Community Trust who in October granted  funding to the Junior Ski Racing and Training squad to the tune of $1400. This money will be set aside for next season for coaches/coordinators expenses and the like.

We look forwards to next season and more training and racing at Manganui.

Clive Saleman
Racing and Training Coordinator.


What a difference a good snow year makes with 23 T bar days and many more on the top tow the season is now winding down to its eventual conclusion. The accounts are complete and while the financial position has improved the same problem for all clubs like ours remain. That is we seem to be able to cover costs but the ability to go on and generate extra revenue that would, in the end be the icing on the cake seems to elude us. This is in part due to snow not staying long enough on the t bar or when it did the weather was against us, unfortunately this goes with the territory. Therefore we need to look at other revenue streams to supplement our income and the biggest potential for growth here has to be the lodge.

Over the course of the summer a review will be undertaken on all aspects of lodge operation, suffice to say a better rate of return on our investment would hopefully mean less income flucations in poorer snow years. Once that has been done then the new committee will in all probability act on its recommendations.

The biggest expense this season was the complete rebuild of the flying fox. It has been sometime since it had an overhaul and was really due for it when the Lodge burnt down. We managed to keep it going through the rebuild process and saved us money in the process-how we kept it going the last couple of seasons is a credit to Mario Padrutt and his team because in the end we were working on it weekly and really in essence wasting money. We had to choose our time to overhaul it and it was done within a 3-4 week window just as the fox became operational the snow began to fall. They say it’s all in the timing 

Todd Velvin was the Mountain Manager for this season with a dual role as the Avalanche 2 safety co coordinator. He was assisted by Brooke Fletcher and other staff members Hope Fletcher, Richard Craig, Stephen Haami, Quinton O’ Carroll and Mike Anderson along with volunteer staff made up of club members. My sincere thanks to all that pitched in and helped this winter your contribution to the success of the season was immeasurable.

Next season Todd isn’t available for the Managers job, he will however continue to be on the committee in the safety services role. As a result the committee will be investigating the possibility of employing an Avalanche 2 person form Canada who is interested in gaining experience on a maritime mountain. This role would also entail training our appropriately qualified Avalanche 1 people on all aspects of snow safety. We would also employ a manager to run everything else. This suggestion came out of the end of season review we undertook at the last committee meeting and while we recognised that there issues surrounding some areas of our performance the committee felt that in the main things worked very well.

As there are various committee positions up for nomination this year I would like to take the time to thank all committee members for their contribution to the smooth running of our club. Its an important role as we ensure that the skiing fraternity of Taranaki do get to ski and for that to happen  the more mundane stuff has to be done in order for all to enjoy the snow when it arrives.

I am standing down as President this year with Kevin Rowland’s being nominated for the position. I will be remaining on as Treasurer for one more year and will transition Kevin through his first year. Jenny Fletcher will again be doing the subscriptions. The splitting of this role from the main treasurer’s tasks worked well this year and is something that should continue. Splitting such tasks will in time mean more involvement of others members willing to commit to the future of our club. 

Finally our club is all about people and this year we were shocked by the tragic death of Trent Keegan a young man getting on with his life.

 We also lost Stewart Scully a former club secretary who took over the role when a previous secretary resigned. Stewart kept things going for two seasons in a transitional role.

Alan McAsey was a member in the early days of the club he was an excellent racer with trophies bearing his name on Manganui and Ruapehu.

Bill Brown also passed away recently. Bill has been around the mountain winter and summer for so long his absence was felt by all those that knew him. His last trip to the mountain was a month before he died with his good mates George and Vern the day was perfect and he was in no hurry to go home.

Enjoy your summer.

Chris Burr.  


The SMC committee is currently working on…

  • Accounts for audit/AGM presentation
  • AGM organisation 
  • mailout newsletter issue 
  • Lower field tidy up


Stephen & Denise Hobo-Tuck




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Phone: 06 753 7113
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Sequence of weather maps showing NO ORDINARY STORM.
Isobars below 1000 are unshaded.



Media & Marketing Contacts

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

SMC Newsletter/Promotional/IT
Justin Keenan

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

Want to Contribute?

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. 


No Ordinary Storm

(the 'No Ordinary Storm'  produced heavy snowfall for Mt. Taranaki, and helped Manganui's snowpack increase to its peak at mid-August. The t-bar received 40-50cm, the top tow 60-70cm. The secondary schools ski champs were able to be held on the Wednesday - the same day the storm front hit Canterbury. The whole of Canterbury was affected by the heavy rains.  The storm caused slips and problems with roads throughout the region.  The storm ended on Friday, 1 August. Mt Hutt received over 1m of easterly snow, on top of 90cm received the Friday before.)

On Thursday and Friday 24/25 July MetService alerted the nation that the weather coming that weekend would be "NO ORDINARY STORM". Indeed the storm that pounded the northeastern parts of the North Island proved itself to be worthy of such a warning. Winds along the coast gusted between 130 and 160 km/hr (70 and 86 kt) between Cape Reinga and White Island. Winds where accentuated around the Kaimai ranges and toppled hundreds of trees at Te Aroha.
When the winds arrived at Mount Ruapehu blizzard conditions quickly appeared and ski fields had to be evacuated. Power cuts affected much of Northland and parts of Auckland. Heavy rain produced surface flooding and slips that closed roads. A fishing boat was swept onto rocks near Opotiki in the Bay of Plenty resulting in two fatalities. The saving grace that mitigated the damage from this weather was that the track of this storm only affected part of the nation, and that the low centre was very compact and covered a relatively small area, also it was a comparatively fast moving system and only affected any one place for around 12 hours.

That low was followed quickly by a much larger winter low which took four days to travel from west of Northland to east of Southland, producing more widespread wind and rain damage - but that's another story.

The forecast track for this feature as issued on the Friday before it arrived:

The storm followed this predicted path closely.

A meteorological BOMB
The famous Swedish meteorologist Professor Tor Harold Percival Bergeron (15 Aug 1891 to Jun 1977) is best known for his work on cloud physics. Work that was done in the 1930s by Tor Bergeron and W. Findeisen led to the concept that in the upper parts of clouds, with temperatures between -10°c and -30°C, there are both supercooled water droplets and ice crystals. Once the ice crystals start to form a chain reaction occurs whereby water evaporates from the droplets and accretes onto the crystals which then fall as snow and melt into cold rain. This is known as the Bergeron Precipitation Process.

Bergeron was one of the main scientists in the Bergen School of Meteorology, a school of thought which still forms the basis of much of the modern style of weather forecasting. The Bergen school studied the weather in the North Sea and formed the notion of cold and warm fronts. They produced a model that explained how mid-latitude low pressure systems formed, deepened and decayed. Whilst studying the deepening of these systems it is reputed that Tor Bergeron coined the measurement term of 24 hectoPascals or millibars (hPa) in 24 hours. Since he was doing his studies at around 50 to 60 degrees North latitude this term needs to be modified to be used at other latitudes. In 1979 Bob Rice (later the meteorologist for Team NZ when they won the America's Cup in 1995 and 2000) described the low pressure system that resulted in tragic loss of life in that year's Fastnet race as a rare summer example of a meteorological 'bomb'. In 1980, Fred Sanders and John Gyakum combined Rice's terminology with Bergeron's formula and defined a meteorological 'bomb' as a mid-latitude cyclone whose central surface pressure decreases at a rate of at least 1 bergeron = 24 hPa in 24 hours at a latitude of 60 degrees. For other latitudes the bergeron threshold is defined by a (geostrophically) equivalent rate obtained by multiplying by a factor of sin (latitude)/sin (60 degrees).

Bergeron Thresholds for barometers detecting if a deepening low is a bomb:

30S/Norfolk Island /Raoul Island: 14 hPa in 24 hours.
Lord Howe Island: 15 hPa in 24 hours.
Cape Reinga: 16 hPa in 24 hours
Auckland: 17 hPa in 24 hours
New Plymouth/Napier 18 hPa in 24 hours
Nelson/Wellington: 18 hPa in 24 hours
Hokitika/Christchurch/Chatham Islands: 19 hPa in 24 hours
Dunedin/Invercargill: 20 hPa in 24 hours

The low pressure surface central pressure was 992 hPa at noon on Friday at 26 South and 964 hPa at noon on Saturday at 34 South-that's a drop of 28 hPa averaged on 30 South, or 2.0 bergerons or twice the rate needed for it to be called a bomb. The lowest pressures measured in New Zealand were 963 to 964 hPa between Cape Reinga and Whangarei, and down to 971 in Auckland and these are NEW records. Less pressure means a higher sea level, and in this case the sea-rise would have been as much as 50 cm above its mean.
This was indeed NO ORDINARY STORM.

The storm went through a period of what is known as "explosive cyclogensis" as it moved across the north Tasman Sea. Air rising up and out of the top of the feature was removed by a jetstream aloft faster than it could be replenished, resulting in a net loss of air within the systems and thus a rapid drop of air pressure, more isobars near the centre and thus more wind and rain at the surface The primary method of development was the difference in density between the air ahead of and behind the low pressure centre.

This method of development, albeit intense in this case, is typical of mid-latitude low-pressure systems and completely different from the formation of tropical cyclones. (A tropical cyclone manages to deepen by feeding on the energy released from tropical thunderstorms that are triggered when the sun shines on very warm oceans). A tropical cyclone is special. They occur less often than do mid-latitude cyclones, and the skies and clouds give little warning of their approach. Consequently tropical cyclones are given names in order to help during the warning process. Even though the system on 25/26 July was well identified beforehand as being special and likely to bomb near New Zealand it wasn't given any particular name. Bombs are quite common around the southern ocean and occur between Australia and South America at around 2-4 times per month, too often to have much advantage in naming them. A meteorological bomb only occurs near New Zealand about once every year or so. This one was named in the media as being NO ORDINARY STORM, and that helped us all brace for its passage.

As the low moved off the southwest winds rose to nearly 70 knots for around an hour - the equivalent force of a Category One Hurricane. The Easterly winds rose to 73 Knots with gusts to 87 knots.

Bob McDavitt, MetService Weather Ambassador


Want to Advertise?

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.


pic thanks Rhys Williams

Title image supplied by
TNL Graphics

See you on the Top Tow slopes!
SMC Management
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