Wanderings, travel, photographs and skiing…

Skiing New Zealand: Palmerston North to Ohakune

By on September 11, 2007 in New Zealand

We had a great drive up from Palmerston North to Ohakune – we passed through some fantastic countryside.

We stopped for lunch in Taihape which is the Gumboot Capital of New Zealand (or even the world).

Taihape even has a giant wellington boot. The boot thing all started because a comedian called John Clarke had a character called Fred Dagg who claimed that the only interesting thing that ever happened in Taihape was the annual boot throwing contest – as there wasn’t such a thing they decided to start one….

Taihape - the Gumboot Capital of New Zealand - a big boot....

Taihape – the Gumboot Capital of New Zealand – a big boot….

We stopped in one viewing place, and I got my first glimpse of the volcano, Mount Ruapehu, on which we would be skiing the next day… it was very impressive.

We stayed at the Sunbeam Motels & Lodge – about 2.5 km from Ohakune, but only 200 m from bars, restaurants and three ski/board hire shops (and the local railway station).

Sunbeam Motels & Lodge

Sunbeam Motels & Lodge, Ohakune

Sunbeam Motels & Lodge was very good value – for $180 NZ per night we had a chalet that could sleep eight people. At weekends it costs around $300 per night, but that is still excellent value. Sunbeam Motels & Lodge also had spa room, bar and restaurant

Along Thames Street, there were three bars (the large Powderhorn, a small bar, and Turoa Lodge), plus Hot Lava which was closed and appeared to be abandoned (all the tables and chairs were stacked up inside).

We had dinner in the Powderhorn (a good meal), plus a few beers. Then on to Turoa Lodge to listen to You, Me and the Mrs (I think that is what they were called – anyway, a three piece (drums, bass, lead)) cover-band that did some good remixes of 80s/90s classics.

Tomorrow we ski on the volcano at Turoa (there is another ski area nearby called Whakapapa – but we won’t have time to visit that).

Drive time: 3 hours
Distance: 93.53 miles

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