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Turning off Highway 47 toward Ruapehu brings you to The Grand Chateau. From there the 8km Bruce Road winds to the Top O' the Bruce where there are car parks for 2000 cars. The road is sealed all the way.


Whakapapa is on the north-easterly slopes of Mt Ruapehu. It is New Zealands biggest and busiest ski area. It has a total skiable area of 400ha, it has a total of 43 runs ranging from beginner, to off piste expert. Accessing these runs is a total of 16 lifts with a total uphill capacity of 26,710 skiers per hour.
Like most areas in New Zealand, Whakapapa has treeless alpine conditions and can suffer from whiteouts. The ski area follows a well defined landscape boundary along it's eastern edge. The Te Herenga Ridge, Meads Wall, Whakapapa Valley, Skippers Cliff and Pinnacles ridge form an impossible barrier. The skifield itself is divided in two by an ancient remnant lava flow. Therefore, the area east of Delta Ridge Hut Flat and the eastern side has abundant landmarks and landscape focal points, whilst the western side is open with a weak sense of boundary definition. Both these areas of the ski field have many cliffs and unexpected breaks in the terrain.
The ski area can be broken into three distinctive areas:
Happy Valley is a self contained beginners area seperate from the rest of the ski area. It is situated just below the Top O' the Bruce. It is sheltered, it has it's own ski rental and cafetaria, and the terrain is 100% covered by snowmaking.
The "east" side of the ski area is where the majority of the lifts and services are. It has a variety of terrain for every skiing ability.
The "west" hosts and cafeteria, a quad chairlift and a T-Bar. The highlight of this area is "Black Magic", an off piste area, which is lift accessed back country skiing at it's best. "

Nearest Village Whakapapa Village
Distance (km) 6
Nearest Town National Park Village
Distance (km) 12
Nearest Airport Taupo
Distance (km) 102
Annual Snow Fall (m) 2.3
Season Opens Mid June
Season Closes Mid October
Skiable Area (Hectares) 400
Total Number of Lifts 16
Base Altitude (m) 1625
Highest Altitude (m) 2300
Beginner 25%
Intermediate 50%
Advanced 25%
Chairlifts 7
T-Bars 4
Platters 3
Rope Tows 2
Ski School Yes
Ski Hire Yes
Chain Hire Yes
Groomers Yes
Half Pipe Yes
Terrain Park Yes
Cafe Yes
Bar Yes
Accommodation on Ski Area Yes

Contact Details
Company Name Ruapehu Alpine Lifts Ltd
Phone 64 7 8923738
Fax 64 7 8923732
Mail PRIVATE BAG, Mt Ruapehu

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