Ohau Snowfields, New Zealand Report: Winter Comes To Call In High Country

Paulie | | Conditions ReportConditions Report
Strong winds were pushing a nice little cushion of freshies into the landings beneath Ohau’s ‘Hollywood’ rocks. Photo: P.M.Fadden

Report from August 12 & 13, 2023

It’s been a lively game of storm cloud cat & mouse above the jagged peaks of Otago’s majestic high country and revered Ohau Snowfields. And patience has won the day.

Ohau’s been in the newsreels recently, as the magical place is up for sale. But today all attention is on the forecast.

Broody old clouds, heavy with snow, have muscled into the Ohau Valley overnight and seem happy to hang out.

Telltale signs of action above Ohau’s ridge line yesterday afternoon. Photo: P.M.Fadden

What’s been a few zippy days of festive snow flurries on punchy wind is growing steadily.

Even as this report is typed, a full-fledged storm front is shrouding the landscape and (for today anyway) closing the mountain access road leading to Ohau Snowfields–making the images of this report among the last before this stunning region disappeared into white mist.   

Along the Southern Alps, storm cells move quickly thanks to strong wind speed. This gap in yesterday’s clouds lasted only a blink but provided a tasty glimpse at how the summits are shaping up. Photo: P.M.Fadden
A bit of weather has definitely been percolating deep in the range. And a welcome dash of fresh snow looks to be a happy result. Photo: P.M.Fadden
The always delightful Double Chair at Ohau Snowfields.
…if these seats could talk, the rowdy tales they would have to tell! Photo: P.M.Fadden

Naturally, every manjack and his dog is waiting eagerly for a crack at this new snow. And be assured the absolutely outstanding crew of Ohau Snowfields will be ears-pricked and hard at work to get the area open.

Stay tuned, happy campers, Ohau Snowfields is about to go off. And we will be there! 

Extended Forecast

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