Following the short pre-flight safety brief, ‘You can lean on the door once she’s closed’ our pilot taxied the Porter out onto the Mount Cook runway oviously by feel as he could see absolutely nothing through the heavily frosted wind screen.
In no time we were airborne, into the sun and heading for Tasman Saddle for the grand finale to our road trip of South Island. We’d skied the back bowls of Treblecone, the Pisa Range, West Coast Glaciers and Club fields and we were now looking forward to four days in the upper Tasman and Murchison valleys. Thanks to Whitney we played our weather cards right, thus enjoying some of the best spring skiing any of us had ever done. Several descents were on the most perfect spring snow imaginable without even the slightest imperfection to disturb the smooth course of our skis. Add sunsets over the Tasman Sea, good food, welcoming people and lots of laughs and the result was a ski experience which sits up there with the best of them. With only two non-skiing days and an average of 1700m skinning per day the team was tired and happy as we celebrated the end of our tour in Charly’s. The rain falling heavily, obscuring the mountains we had just left, posed no problem.