19 Jun 2017

Anger as ski company charges for sledding and tobogganing

From Morning Report, 8:35 am on 19 June 2017

People living near the Turoa and Whakapapa ski areas are upset they will not have free access to areas that have been traditionally open for those who wanted to sled, toboggan and throw snowballs.

Students from Wellington High are among 80 people snowed in on Mount Ruapehu's Tukino ski field.

Students letting off some steam after being cooped up inside. Photo: Supplied / Thomas Gibson

Ruapehu Alpine Lifts is charging $139 for a family snow play pass to the two areas where people used to be able to go for free.

Its chief executive, Ross Copland, said the area has had considerable investment and improvements over the last few years which is the reason for the charge.

But he said the company will listen and take on board what locals are saying.

"Some folks have given us feedback that they think those charges, including the site fee, not everybody is going to want to do that.

"We are taking that feedback on board and providing a range of lower cost passes that are by the hour," Mr Copland said.