A holiday in the snow, cold and ice growing up would of been classed a ‘bad’ summer. Given the choice, my siblings and I would always jump at the chance of a summer holiday over a winter holiday. I mean who can blame us, sun sea and sand. But It has meant I’ve missed out of trying out any winter sports for the past 19 years.
One of the reasons to moving to New Zealand was to experience things I wouldn’t normally try back at home, snowboarding was certainly on this list! I’ll be honest when I got asked if I wanted to spend my weekend on a mountain snowboarding, I was very hesitant.. what if I didn’t enjoy it?! What if everyone was much better than me and left me at the top of the mountain?? I mean I’d never been to a ski resort so had no idea there were every ‘stages’ to the mountain at this point!!
Never the less, a very last minute decision, a quick pep talk to myself and a visit to the Ski hire shop led to a 5 hour drive on Friday to Mount Ruapehu. I would 100% recommend hiring your skiing gear before heading to the mountain because it proved to be cheaper and better quality- I hired a full snowboarding ‘outfit’ from Snow Centre in Newmarket for $50 for the whole weekend.
I stayed with Brian and our friends just outside Lake Taupo, around 45 minute drive from the Mount which was perfect to visit the mountain and explore the local area as I had never been before. We went with our Flatmate, his younger brother, his Step brother, and his younger brother, .. have I lost you yet?! Going with the two younger boys was great but meant it was school holidays.. not so great. The mountain was full by 12:30pm so we couldn’t even get up to snowboard on the Saturday.
Instead we went for walk around the Huka Falls which were beautiful. The sheer volume of water flowing over the falls amounts to 220,000 litres per second – crazy right?! It was so lovely walking around the bush track that runs along side the water; worth doing if you ever visit this part of New Zealand.
An Early 6:30am wake up call to make sure we made it onto the mountain allowed us to drive whilst the sun was still rising which was beautiful. We arrived at the mountain around 8/8:30am and managed to drive half way and park – Thank god!!
I really learnt this weekend how stepping out of your comfort zone and doing something that you wouldn’t normally do can be the best thing you ever do. I love love loved it. It’s one of those moments where your left questioning why you haven’t done it sooner. After a few runs and falling over straight after getting up I finally caught the hand of it and managed a few runs down without falling.
I think I’ve caught the bug because I’m itching to go back, Im not 100% sure ill make it down to the Mount before the end of this season, but I cannot wait to go back next year! – I’d love to snowboard in Queenstown too eventually, I can imagine that being amazing!