Flew down to Queenstown for some Snowboarding , met up with friends and took quite a few pics…
Flew down to Queenstown on the 8:30 am Jetstar flight and it was great, no delays, no issues, same for the flight back on Monday, plan was off the plane straight up to Coronet Peak but we had to make a small detour into Queenstown itself to collect a car. Coronet was nice, haven’t been there before, good, if not fresh, spring snow conditions, no queues on the lifts, plenty of intermediate terrain to play , all in all a fair day on a hill, especially as it was free..
When we arrived at Coronet there was a rainbow over Deer Park heights:
On the way down we stopped for some shots of Wakitipu, Queenstown and general area.. The place is just made for photo’s.
Saturday night we head out to Arrowtowns New Orleans pub for beer and food, met a great old guy ended up shooting his portrait, not completely prepared for this with only a 10-20 on me! After a fair bit of work this is the end result..
Took some shots of the patio at the back which had a nice fire etc but honestly nothing you really want to spend time with..
Sunday comes around and due to strong winds and possibly bad weather coming in we ditch the Remarkables plan and head back up to Coronet Peak to watch the Big Air competition, all the major ski and boarding stars are in Queenstown at the moment practicing for the Winter Olympics. We missed the Snowboard heats but timed it so we could catch the finals. Which were promptly cancelled due to high winds.
Looking at the jump I can see why. Some of the Skiers still went for it, out of 7 or so that we saw, 2 made the landing.
Everyone looked OK, even the 12 year old boy who whilst great in the air wasn’t so good spread over the landing ramp…
During this display of, well, skill I think, the lifts started back up , so I head off to buy an afternoon pass and head up for a few runs. A few turned out to be 2. At the top on the second run the lift stopped with is 5m from the exit and sat in 120km/hr gale force winds in an icy blizzard having our skin flayed from our faces. Oh Joy. We spent about 100 years, or 2 min, stuck there then the lift started up again, we got off to a total white out, headed down ASAP and eventually found visibility 100m or so from the peak. Glad Coronet is fairly easy with no scary drops…
Well that ended the days boarding fun. We hung around a bit, contemplated the twin chair lift, got soaked through and decided we’d be frozen stiff if we bothered, so we didn’t. Back to the ranch.
Rain set in heavy for the afternoon so we relaxed by the fire with beers, few people came round had a good night in.
Monday morning we head out for a bit of a drive and a few pics. Turned out to be a fair drive over the Crown range to Wanaka via the old Cardrona pub.
Not long into the climb out , Queenstown side, we stopped and I shot a large panoramic showing Arrowtown on the far right, Movern hill centrally with lake Hayes, stitched in CS4 (I don’t recommend it), 35 shots, 70-200 at 70mm, full size is 30,000 px wide, click for a smaller view:
Also shot a more focused landscape with rather fantastic light, Movern Hill:
I shot some of the iconic Cardrona pub, some streams and some more landscapes, nothing worth showing really, and we hit Wanaka, 5 min on the lakefront was all my schedule allowed!
I still think Wanaka is the most beautiful spot in the whole of New Zealand, plans are afoot for Warbirds next March, along with Central Otago..
I’d been lucky enough to check in online and get a good window seat on the flight back, oops probably the wrong side of the plane really but the light was good and I had the 70-200 on the camera, was tough getting enough space to shoot but I got a few reasonable mountain shots, 2 of the Remarkables:
And 1 of another peak I couldn’t name…