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Cragieburn Sidecountry

A powder day exploring the ski field

Ski Touring Moderate

17 km
2.7 km
2.7 km
1 day +
Low Point
1.2 km
High Point
1.8 km
Cragieburn Sidecountry Map

The Craigieburn ski field is one of those wild places that only can be provided with New Zealand hospitality. Riding down the terrain is the easiest part as getting up the nutcracker rope tows is a bit more challenging, especially if you are a snowboarder. While it is intimidating the first few times once you get the feel of it you will be rewarded with not only a great ski hill but a long ridgeline which offers quite the variety of open bowls to find fresh tracks but be aware that this area can get busy and for the most part you won’t be alone.


After purchasing a lift ticket you need to make it up 3 separate rope tows before arriving up on the high ridge. From the moment you get up you can start to see along the high ridge to the north and the different open bowls. While all the lifts are in one basin it is the terrain to the Northeast that makes this place special. Heading out towards runs like Middle Main or 210 you can ride all the way down to the Craigieburn road before hiking back up to the base of the tbars and heading back up.

As the day goes on you need to keep getting further and further out along the ridge which sees high traffic so it will be relatively easy to travel along. Heading along the ridge all the way out to the Southern Point 1828 you can still ride all the way back to the road easily. While you can also descent via the eastern bowls into the next basin it is a lot more difficult to get back to the road as there is a good chance there isn’t efficient snowpack within the valley. So in my experience I just stayed in the Southwestern basin and was treated to lap after lap of fresh tracks making the most out of a powder day.

For more pictures and the full story check out this link https://www.whereiskylemiller.com/new-zealand/craigieburn-valley-ski-area/



Slopes become slightly steeper at around 25-30 degrees.

Medium Exposure (E2)

2 out of 4

As well as the slope itself, there are some obstacles (such as rock outcrops) which could aggravate injury.


1 out of 4

Close to help in case of emergency.

Best time to visit

between July and November


  • Bowl
  • Face
  • Alpine
  • Ski Safari
  • Single Descent

Equipment required

  • Skins
  • Crampons

Similar routes nearby