While we’re sweating away the last few of days of summer here in the northern hemisphere, ski season is peaking south of the equator. Tuesday marked the beginning of the Volkl New Zealand Free Ski Open. The eight-day event, which travels around the best mountains on the south island, kicked off with the Icebreaker Big Mountain qualifiers at the Remarkables Snow Field. On Wednesday, the field of 60 was narrowed to 25 men and 7 women, who moved to the Motatapu Chutes at Treble Cone for the semi-finals. The heli-accessed finals are scheduled for Friday. 8 guys and 4 girls will compete at a yet to be determined location, which, with the amount of snow NZ has been getting, is sure to be sick.
If that’s not enough to make you jealous, the events keep coming. On Friday night the BASE Rail Jam will take place in downtown Wanaka. Next week the party moves to Snow Park NZ for the New Zealand Community Trust Halfpipe on Tuseday and the Red Bull Slopestyle on Wednesday. The culmination of the competitions is Wednesday night, back in Wanaka, with the viewing and judging of the Big-Mountain finals film.
So far the Kiwis have been killing it on their home turf, with 5 men and 1 woman set to go to the Big-Mountain finals. Devin Carrick and John Mason are sitting 4th and 6th, holding it down for the US, but with 4 more days of competition there’s still plenty that can happen. For more information about the event, and full results visit freeskier.co.nz