Porter Heights

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Resort Summary
Resort Name Porter Heights
Location {{{location}}}
Resort Altitude
Winter Season July/Aug/Sept
Terrain Overall:
Beginner:
Intermediate:
Advanced:
Lift System 3 x T-bars
Highest Lift 1980 m
Lowest Lift 1340 m
Vertical 640 metres
Longest Run
Avg Snowfall
Terrain Parks
Snow Sports
Facilities
Nearest Town Springfield
Lift Pass
Adult 5 Day $
Adult 1 Day $$75
Child 5 Day $
Child 1 Day $$40


Overview 

3 T-bar lifts go straight up a valley. Cruisy terrain on the lower lift, and steeper higher up. Kids are well catered for. Excellent advanced terrain in McNulty's Basin, and Bluff Face, and the legendary Big Mama. One ski club lodge halfway down the access road.

Big Mama is one of New Zealand's legendary lift accessed faces, but suffers from unrelieable snow. If struck on a powder day, you'll remember this run very fondly.

Location

Highway 73, near Porter's Pass, west of Christchurch, NZ.

Pros

  • Closest ski area to Christchurch, 89km.
  • Cheap for families.
  • Snowmaking to ensure cover in lower areas and beginner runs.

Cons

  • Windy, can be shut like Mt Hutt when the wind blows.
  • Fickle natural snow cover, often the best expert runs can be thin.

Contacts

Phone: 0064 3 3184731

Fax: PLEASE EDIT

Postal: Porter Heights Ski Area PO Box Springfield Canterbury NZ

Planning

Getting There

Take Highway 73 from Christchurch, over Porter's Pass, and turn off left at the sign about 7km later. Gravel road from there to the ski area, 8km further. A few zig-zags near the top, but pretty user-friendly by NZ ski area standards. Carry chains at all times.

Accommodation

On Mountain

One ski club lodge a few minutes drive down the ski area access road. Inexpensive and convenient.

See alpine lodge website

Off Mountain

Not much. Castle Hill Village (mainly private houses, and one B+B), or Springfield, or Darfield (rural towns).

Lift Tickets

Adult $60, tertiary student $50, school age $35, under 5's free. Good value season passes if purchased prior to April 30: adult $299. Mid-week-only season passes are $199, a factor contributing to absenteeism amongst the Christchurch workforce.

Ski School

Yes.

Equipment Hire

Full ski hire on-mountain, and complete beginners' packages.


Resort Facilities

Getting Around

PLEASE EDIT

Parking

Drive to the top of the road: bingo, you're at the car park. No parking charges of course, it's NZ.

Activities

EDIT ACTIVITY 

EDIT ACTIVITY DESCRIPTION

Dining

Cafe for lunch food on the mountain.

Bars & Entertainment

Entertainment is sliding downhill on your chosen equipment. Bars in the shape of a T get you back up again.

Shopping

Small shop sells sunscreen and bits and pieces you may have lost or had stolen by Keas (alpine parrots).

Children

Children are well catered for at Porter Heights.


Ride Guide

Beginner Areas

Most of the lower area of the mountain is beginner or intermediate, user-friendly terrain, snowmaking and groomed.

Groomed Runs

Most of the lower mountain well groomed. At least one groomed trail goes from top down to bottom.

Off Piste

Head skier's left on a cat track to McNulty's Basin or Bluff Face, great fun after fresh snowfalls. Head right from the top onto Big Mama for 2000 vertical feet of non-stop steep treeless powder.

Out of Bounds

Head skier's left on Adrian's Highway (the McNulty's Basin track), and then use AT gear and skins to access further along the ridge to Crystal Valley and other basins. NB: make sure you have checked avalanche risk with ski patrol before going out. Never travel b/c alone and always have avalanche safety gear for you and your ski buddies.

Cross Country

No nordic skiing here, mate. Bit steep for that.

Parks & Pipes

PLEASE EDIT

Bumps

PLEASE EDIT

Powder Zones

Big Mamma in good snow is one NZ's best powder

Sheltered Runs

PLEASE EDIT

Snowplay

PLEASE EDIT


Other

Weather

Gets windy. Can be shut sometimes.

Geography

PLEASE EDIT

History

Originally a Canterbury club field which "grew up" and became commercial.


Resources

Porter Heights home page

Maps

[1]