Learn to Snowboard in New Zealand: Treble Cone

If you’re on a Gap Year you should do your very best to time your arrival in New Zealand with the ski season. Skiing looks great but let’s be honest, Snowboarding looks so much cooler! I’ve never being Skiing or Snowboarding before and was very keen on trying. Treble Cone invited me along to sample lessons and see how awesome they could make me in three days.

Treble Cone is 35 minutes from Wanaka and 90 minutes drive from Queenstown. Standing at 2088m it offers a great mixture of slopes and some rather challenging black runs.

As I step off the Kiwi Discovery Ski Link bus it really dawns on me; it’s winter and I’m on a mountain! I love hot weather but I’d trade it in for this kind of scenery. The view alone from the top of Treble Cone is worth a visit in itself.

I’m booked on to a 3 Day First Timer Burton Learn to Ride Package. At $400 for 3 days; which includes 4 x 2 hour lessons, full day lift passes and quality Burton gear, it’s one of the cheaper ways to learn to snowboard in New Zealand. Treble Cone is also a Burton Learn to Ride (LTR) Centre. Coupled with the Burton clothes rentals I got from SnowRental in Queenstown I am ready to roll.

Personally, I think the three day package is spot on. Day 1 has a lesson on the beginners slope in the morning and the afternoon is free time. I did a bit of snowboarding in the afternoon but to be honest I was working muscles I didn’t know I had so I didn’t do much. The package does include a scenic pass up the ski lift and a free drink so I just enjoyed the view. Day 2 is a morning and afternoon lesson and day 3 is just a morning session. I think this set up is perfect for beginners as I found I was shattered on the first day and on the last day I just needed to go on my own way and practice in the afternoon.

Learning to snowboard initially can be quite frustrating. The thing I found most difficult was standing up! Not the best way to start but trust me it gets much easier. I was surprised by how quickly I improved, even on the first day. I think this comes down to the instructors. Treble Cone has an exceptionally high standard when it comes to the instructors and they don’t make it easy to get a job teaching there. You can be rest assured you’re being taught by some of the best.

I really do think that it would be a shame for anyone to come to New Zealand during winter and not try snowboarding. From my experience, if you’re a complete beginner I would strongly recommend at least two days of lessons, three if you can afford it. Two days of lessons had me comfortably doing green runs but by day three I was trying blue.

Why pick Treble Cone over another mountain? It’s an interesting question. Coronet Peak and The Remarkables are popular due to their distance to Queenstown but does that necessarily mean they are better? Not at all. Treble Cone is a great place to learn. If you are already a snowboarder and come to Queenstown on holiday I would urge you to make a trip to Treble Cone. I honestly believe you’ll be converted.

What’s wrong with snowboarding at Treble Cone? I guess the main concern is the distance, perfect from Wanaka but not so close from Queenstown. Still even though the driving times are longer I think it’s worth it.

All in all a great experience. Loved the instructors at Treble Cone. They were such a friendly team and they taught me well. Will I continue with Snowboarding? Hell yeah I will! I really did get the bug for it and I am considering doing a season somewhere else.

I now count myself a snowboarder; 50% more attractive and 75% more cocky…

 

This post was made in partnership with by Treble Cone, Kiwi Discovery and SnowRental.

3 Comments

  • Matt

    July 25, 2010

    Sweet pictures mate. Glad you sorted out the snowboarding! TC seems like a long ways to go from Queenstown. I went to Cardrona this weekend and that seemed like a trip – granted I was hitchhiking so it was bound to take longer than using normal transportation!

  • Kelly

    September 20, 2010

    Awesome!! I loooove snowboarding! I had never tried it before I lived in Queenstown.. then I started living with some snowboarding nuts and they got me hooked! I was so blessed to have them.. they were so patient and taught me everything.

    Now I’m dying to do my next season!

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