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Whakapapa Ski Area is located on Mt Ruapehu's north-western slopes in the Tongariro National Park. Whakapapa has a wide range of terrain to explore with plenty to options for all levels of skiing and boarding. Opening day for the 2012 winter season is June 23rd.
North Island ▷ Ruapehu ▷ Tongariro / National Park Village
Untrained staff at gear hire. So many people we allowed into the gear hire area that kids were being trampled and shoved. Very dangerous and frightening. Staff created a huge backlog by only giving out boots. Staff were not checking dockets and giving out gear randomly. Hundreds of people crammed together waiting to get their other gear. It took a member of the public to stop the stampede of people entering the hire shop and get he line to back up. After an hour and a half we left to get a refund. Spent another 2 hours in a line waiting for the refund. Plenty of other staff around and unmanned booths that could have been opened. Management need to be fired. Diabolical, Dangerous, Disgusting. All the D’s. Great job guys!
We took the cable car to the top station. From there we had a walk around. After the hiking we had a good coffee in the highest restaurant they say in New Zealand.
Last week of the season, half day discount, good equipment hired, friendly lift operators.
This was my first visit to a ski-field. The road to the ski-field is very good being tar-seal compared to the SI resorts. Staff were very friendly and it is a free chair lift down to the cafe but found there wasnt much there for if you were there to just play in the snow and not ski. The sled track only suitable for young children and wasn't steep nor long enough for older people to enjoy and the sled didn't even work on it. We had more fun using our sled around the back of the main building. Turoa was by far better for this type of activity.
Mid week skiing on a fine day can be superb. This season grooming was good, staff pleasant and crowds light mid week to improve the experience.