Carv­ing up the pow­der

Snow kit­ing will get the adrenalin pump­ing, writes Tim Stock­man

Go Travel New Zealand - - Wanaka - GTNZ

Snow kit­ing. What’s that, you ask? Think of ski­ing & snow­board­ing back in the ‘80s and how pop­u­lar it has be­come to­day. Well, snow kit­ing is be­com­ing the same.

All across the world, skiers & snow­board­ers love their snow sport and ev­ery­thing as­so­ci­ated with it: Freshies, pow­der, first tracks, fast lines, steep and deep, jumps and bumps and some hard and fast rid­ing. The free­dom, the fresh air, and the blast down the moun­tain af­ter tak­ing in the amaz­ing views. Of course, you can do that re­peat­edly all day at your near­est ski re­sort. How­ever, re­mem­ber all the queues, all the rules and the ever de­creas­ing qual­ity of the snow, while wait­ing for the next pow­der day ...

Snow kit­ing takes all the pos­i­tives of snow sports & puts you in con­trol of where you go, not just re­ly­ing on tow & lifts or your boots and skins. By har­ness­ing the power of the wind, a de­pow­er­able con­trol­lable kite gives you the abil­ity to get pulled up hills, across larger dis­tances, and ac­cess more pow­der and pre­vi­ously less ac­ces­si­ble snow ar­eas. So now the adrenalin is re­ally pump­ing and it’s all about you!

If you’ve heard of or seen kite surf­ing on the wa­ter, just think of it on snow and you’ve got it.

Wanaka is the hub for some of the best snowk­it­ing in the South­ern Hemi­sphere, with the most ac­ces­si­ble ter­rain be­ing right in front of Snow­farm in the Cardrona Val­ley.

Drive up and park, pay a small fee at the of­fice & you can al­most kite from your car.

now kit­ing. What’s that, you ask? Think of ski­ing & snow­board­ing back in the ‘80s and how pop­u­lar it has be­come to­day. Well, snow kit­ing is be­com­ing the same.

All across the world, skiers & snow­board­ers love their snow sport and ev­ery­thing as­so­ci­ated with it: Freshies, pow­der, first tracks, fast lines, steep and deep, jumps and bumps and some hard and fast rid­ing. The free­dom, the fresh air, and the blast down the moun­tain af­ter tak­ing in the amaz­ing views.

Of course, you can do that re­peat­edly all day at your near­est ski re­sort. How­ever, re­mem­ber all the queues, all the rules and the ever de­creas­ing qual­ity of the snow, while wait­ing for the next pow­der day ...

Snow kit­ing takes all the pos­i­tives of snow sports & puts you in con­trol of where you go, not just re­ly­ing on tow & lifts or your boots and skins. By har­ness­ing the power of the wind, a de­pow­er­able con­trol­lable kite gives you the abil­ity to get pulled up hills, across larger dis­tances, and ac­cess more pow­der and pre­vi­ously less ac­ces­si­ble snow ar­eas. So now the adrenalin is re­ally pump­ing and it’s all about you!

If you’ve heard of or seen kite surf­ing on the wa­ter, just think of it on snow and you’ve got it.

Wanaka is the hub for some of the best snowk­it­ing in the South­ern Hemi­sphere, with the

most ac­ces­si­ble ter­rain be­ing right in front of Snow­farm in the Cardrona Val­ley.

Drive up and park, pay a small fee at the of­fice & you can al­most kite from your car. Free-ride kiters flock to this spot. It’s rep­u­ta­tion is now world-renowned. Learn­ers can or­gan­ise a les­son be­fore they ar­rive with the Kite­s­ports team which will take them from zero to snowkite hero in just a few days – but it doesn’t stop there.

The whole re­gion has amaz­ing ter­rain to dis­cover around Queen­stown, Cromwell and Alexan­dra to name a few. Lo­cal snow kiters avidly watch the weather & make plans for back­coun­try ad­ven­tures, us­ing 4WD’s & snow­mo­biles for ac­cess and of­ten stay­ing in huts in the moun­tains.

New friends are made as groups de­scend on these largely un­touched ranges.

Kite­s­ports is an Ad­ven­ture Mark Safety Au­dit Cer­ti­fied kite­board­ing school with 17 years ex­pe­ri­ence teach­ing all kite sports and we are just as pas­sion­ate about snow kit­ing in win­ter as we are about our kitesurf­ing in sum­mer.

We have been ex­plor­ing the Wanaka Ranges for 15 years with our kites and we of­fer one day ex­pe­ri­ences from Snow­farm or multi-day back­coun­try trips.

So, if you’re a kite surfer who wants to get their first tracks un­der a kite or a new­comer keen to try this cross-over win­ter snow sport that’s got so many peo­ple frothing, get in touch. We’ll get you hooked!

Don’t take our word for it, though. Here’s what some of our clients say:

“Warn­ing, this sport is ad­dic­tive! Like most kiters I started on wa­ter, but there’s an off sea­son where I live over win­ter, so when I saw snow kit­ing I couldn’t re­sist. My first ex­pe­ri­ence was eas­ier than on wa­ter, in that I didn’t re­quire the ex­tra power to get up and plan­ing. With a few point­ers, I quickly pro­gressed, and snow kit­ing has given me my best back­coun­try and pow­der days ever. Thanks Tim, and bring on win­ter!” John

“I’ve been trav­el­ing the world & see­ing kitesurf­ing and it looked like such a mag­i­cal sport, I had to try ...it was so fun to try but I was still to get it to­gether.. then one win­ter in Wanaka I heard about Snowk­it­ing, my ears pricked up! I have to try ...straight away I could fly the kite, then on the board all of a sud­den I was away, I could not be­lieve it, it was my dream! I did many days with the kite that win­ter:) Now, back in the wa­ter for sum­mer, my kitesurf­ing comes eas­ily. I’m so grate­ful to the Kite­s­ports team who filled me with pas­sion for this amaz­ing sport!” In­grid

Im­age: Miles Holden Rider: Jon McCabe

Im­age: Tim Stock­man

Im­age: Miles Holden

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