After the celebratory weekend in Queenstown it was all go again as we got back into training for the Level 2.  Monday and Tuesday were two of the best days to be had in New Zealand … not even just in a season but possibly ever!  The snow had been falling for days and we finally got to enjoy the amazing powder without that pesky wind getting in the way. I’m not sure a lot of demos were practiced those two days as everyone suddenly realised skiing in powder is a completely different – and fun – ball game.  Check out the photos of us below ...

 
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Nearly everyone headed up the hill on Wednesday to practice and keep enjoying the new snow but Thursday brought a different story.  The wind was back and yet again, it didn’t read the script. After being on hold first up on Thursday morning, we all reached the hill only to wait and wait and wait. Eventually Cardrona conceded that Mother Nature was going to win this game of will and the mountain officially closed. Off we went back down to Wanaka for an indoor session, which was rather interestingly held in a bar! There was no alcohol to loosen up those brain cogs though as the bar was officially closed. We would make up for it later...
 
Before dinner on Thursday everyone gathered together to go through some employment and recruitment information. It was a good chance for the guys to get a bit of an insight into what they need to do if they want to continue in the industry and land a job. Lots of hard work, lots of CV’s and cover letters and lots and lots of applications!  Then it was off to dinner and a pretty nervous one at that for some of the young Brits in our midst were awaiting their A level results. Luckily SnowSkool is full of geniuses … or is that genii?  Gemma achieved ABC and with it a place at her uni of first choice, Cardiff.  Dan got AAB and Ben rocked out with A*A*A*A!  The older ones among us we didn’t even know an A* existed!  Well done guys!
 
Come Friday morning, the snow and wind had played havoc with the road and everyone had to wait at the base until the graders could clear the road sufficiently for a safe drive up. Once we reached the access road there was something very rarely seen anywhere in in New Zealand, let alone in rural Wanaka ... a traffic jam!  Everyone had stopped to put chains on and the road was completely blocked.  Once it did clear and we made it to the top, the day brightened up in parts to be fairly nice. 
 
On Saturday Barbora and Heather headed up to Treble Cone for the day, Heather to work at the Banked Slalom and Barbora to compete on it.  It was a truly beautiful day and Heather managed to catch the sun while Barbora managed to catch 4th place!  So close to the podium – only 2 seconds off. The comp was won by Christy Prior, a local pro rider who competed at Sochi, so Barbora turned in an awesome performance to get that close!
 
While they were up at TC and Ben, George and a few others were up at Cardies, most of us headed to Wanaka’s small but illusionary Puzzling World. The hangovers were given a special treat in the tilted room where everything is at a 15 degree angle and balls roll uphill! The small people got to be giants and the tall people became tiny and everyone’s brain was confused in the hall of following faces. Totally baffled, it was out into the maze, complete with a two storey section specially designed to confuse the already confused. Classic mode asks participants to reach four towers in any order and takes 30-60 minutes but everyone decided to go all out and take on the more challenging task of reaching the four corner towers in a specified order. We split into teams and off we went. Dan and Grant reached the yellow tower first; Scott, Christie and Emily managed to find the green before the yellow; SnowSkool Liz, Nick, Harry and Clark were lucky to reach a tower of any colour! Ignore that earlier assertion about being geniuses – turns out mazes are not our strong point but we did get value for money.
 
Sunday saw most people head back up to Cardrona to enjoy what was indeed a beautiful day while others stayed in town and played Frisbee Golf in the sun.  All up, a gorgeous weekend and a great way to get ready for the next week of training.
 
Back next week with more news from NZ.
 
SnowSkool Liz
Course Host - SnowSkool NZ 2014
 
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