CSC Bunkum #1 2019 - Pre season work party and general information

13 February 2019

Hello for the first time in 2019 – I hope you’ve all had, and are still having, a great summer – it’s been a cracker!  Hard to think about snow when it’s so hot, but needs must …

Firstly, news from last year’s AGM.  We have a new Club President!  Please welcome to the helm Matt Fulton, who was elected unopposed.  Matt has been working hard as our Treasurer for the last two years and we’re happy to have him in the big chair.  Our thanks to retiring president, Bryan Clements, for his commitment and hard work - not that’s it’s over - Bryan remains on the committee in the Past President position so we can make the most of his knowledge and experience.  The role of Treasurer moves to club secretary, Rachel Ward.  We also welcome new committee members Kate Yeo, Steve McLennan, Shane Clements and David Millington.

The committee meets on the 3rd Wednesday evening of every month, March to October, in Hamilton.  The season planning meeting was held on January 29, where some important dates and events on the club calendar were set:

  • The 2019 pre-season “Provisions” work party will take place on Saturday & Sunday, March 16 & 17.  As per last year this is earlier than normal due to the limited availability of the all-important RAL front end loader. This work party is ideally suited for Junior members of all ages; we clean out the pantry, replenish it with the latest and greatest, stack a heap of fire wood, clean and paint. We have a large amount of rubble collected from around the lodge that needs to be removed, there’s a new ski rack system to be installed, and the club linen needs to be brought back from laundering.  Lots to do…  If you have a sturdy wheelbarrow, please bring it – it greatly helps getting supplies and wood in, and rubble out.  It would be great to see some of our newer families come and lend a hand and find out how the provisioning logistics work.  Plus it exempts you from the Work Party levy in your annual subs – a saving of $160 per senior member.  If you can attend this work party, or have any queries, please contact me at 
  • Mid-winter Christmas has been pencilled in for Saturday July 20, the last Saturday of the July school holidays.  This used to be a much loved and well patronised Christie event, I’m sure you’ve seen the collages on the lodge wall, but has not run for the last few years.  We’ve decided to give it one more chance, but we need someone to step up and take the reins – it shouldn’t be too onerous - a bit of promotion, organising a theme etc.  This will be its last chance to dance – if it doesn’t run this year it will be removed from the calendar.  If you’re interested in taking this on, please let me know.
  • Junior weekend – Sat & Sun, July 27 & 28.  This is a new addition to the club calendar, a weekend designed to get our juniors up and flying, with dedicated instructors.  Our club captain will have more info on this in a later bunkum.
  • Christiania Derby – Saturday August 3.  The first of the interclub races and a big weekend at the lodge.
  • Mens Few Days - Mon & Tues Aug 5 & 6.
  • Ladies Few Days moves to a new slot of Weds & Thurs July 31 & Aug 1.  A word from Kate Yeo: Ladies Few Days has been moved to coincide with the Derby weekend. The women's weekday getaway will give you time to practice your racing skills and relax, pre race meet, with likeminded women.  For those with partners who are participating in the Mens Few Days post Derby, the new dates provide the perfect opportunity to split the driving, and for the parents, the child care. Come join us to make this the most enjoyable derby week since …. 
  • Christiania Club Races – Saturday Sept 28.
  • End of Season Work Party - Sat & Sun, Nov 9 & 10.

Invoicing for subs will occur in early April.  If you’re aware of any changes to your membership status, please let me know at as soon as possible – it saves a lot of time and effort if changes are communicated before invoicing.  Subs remain the same as last year, but the committee has decided to reintroduce a joining fee for new members - $100 per new senior member, $50 per junior, to a maximum of $250 per family.  If you’re already a member, this does not affect you.

Remember, the lodge is available to be used all year round.  However, we have a lodge maintenance window from Monday March 4 to Friday March 15 – please avoid booking over these dates.

Are there any webmasters out there?  The skichristie website needs to be moved to a new platform asap – any advice, guidance and assistance would be hugely welcomed!

If you can do the pre-season work party, let me know as soon as possible -


CSC Bunkum #2 2019 - Subs delay - 10/04/2019

10 April 2019

In Bunkum # 1 this year I said that invoicing for subscriptions would occur in early April.  However, as we’re about to implement a long anticipated upgrade to our booking system, we’ve decided to push this back a month or so.  The new system needs to be thoroughly tested before we open for bookings so invoices will only be issued once we’re happy that all is working as expected.  Hopefully this shouldn’t affect the booking process.  As in past years there will be a brief priority period for members participating in mountain programs, as well as an initial restriction on the number of nights you can book in the school holidays.  If you have any concerns about this change in timing, please let me know.

The Provisions Work Party, run by Steve McLennan, was held on the weekend of March 16-17 – here’s what Steve had to say:
The 2019 provisions work party was attended by a full house of enthusiastic members from as far away as Northland and Wairarapa. With exterior work on the lodge now being done next summer, this year’s March work party was mainly about provisions, including carrying several hundred kilos of food and nine cubic metres of firewood from the Rock Garden road, and stacking and storing it in preparation for the coming season. Clean covers were put on all mattresses, pillows and duvets, and the 20+ bags of concrete pieces collected during the November work party were carried to the loader for removal, along with ancient rubbish that’s languished in the storeroom for years. The leaking water tank was drained and cleaned in preparation for its repair in April. Thanks to everyone who came for their hard work, and Pedro for feeding us so well as always.

Thanks to Steve for coordinating the weekend the following members for getting stuck in and helping out:

  • Phil and Rozlyn Armstrong
  • Anita, Jack, Max and Lua Stewart
  • Lynne Keary and Vinn Watts
  • Bram and Flora Stevens and Vivian Oskam
  • Phil and Sheree Lawton
  • Amy, Esther and Hazel Williams
  • Rik, Tracey, Gina and Holly Fisk
  • Genoveva, John, Anika and Thomas Smallfield
  • Phil Spencer Harris
  • John Stephenson and Olivia Paul plus 3 juniors ?????
  • Richard and Tanya Mocke

Thanks also to Kate Yeo for delivering a mountain of meat and Romi McLennan for working her way through a mountain of laundry!

Steve also had a note about maintenance work going on at the lodge at the moment: Our leaking water tank was emptied and cleaned during the March work party in preparation for applying a paintable membrane to seal the concrete structure, but after further investigation it’s been decided a prefabricated flexible liner would be a better long term solution. This will be installed soon at the same time as repairs to the lodge roof.

Recently at Tukino Lodge a plaque was presented to Tukino Alpine Sports Club (TASC) to commemorate the opening of the Tukino Lodge in July 1976, and the Christiania members who built the Lodge. For those who do not know the history, Christie built and ran the lodge concurrently with our present lodge. Over time it became an unsustainable financial liability so was gifted to the Outdoor Pursuits Centre in 2000 and subsequently is in the hands of TASC. Huge thanks to long standing Christie members Doug Downs and Neil Callaghan for initiating this and donating the plaque. 

Some of the “Fathers of Tukino” standing on the Tukino Lodge Deck, with the Waikato Glacier above and Te Hue Hue Peak in the cloud to the right.  l to r: Doug Downs, Neil Callaghan, Michael Callaghan, Kevin Williams.

A spin-off is that the clubs have agreed reciprocal booking rights for our members. If you’re interested in visiting Tukino Lodge please contact the bookings officer,

Also mentioned in Bunkum # 1 was the Mid Winter Xmas.  Sadly we’ve had no one step up to run this – it is now officially a dead horse and we will stop flogging it.  Santa will have to wait until December.

We’ve had a flurry of new members join the club since the end of last season – we welcome:

  • Diane Plant and Ernst Vos with Tom, Luke and Dylan
  • Sandy Turner
  • Greg Williams
  • Ella Buckley and Hamish Paris
  • Andy Rogers
  • Daniel & Mariska van Heerden with Tiaan, Aneda, Kaylin and Matthew
  • Richard & Tanya Mocke with Oliver, Keara and Sophie
  • Alex Gower
  • Mario & Elizabeth Smith with Mia and Lize-Mari


CSC Bunkum #3 2019 - Booking System update

16 May 2019

I was hoping to bring you news of our booking system upgrade but sadly it’s not to be, for 2019 anyway.  We were under the impression that the new system would be easily able to recreate the simple form and function of our old system, but this was not the case.   A decision has been made to roll back to the old system for this year.  It may not look too good on your phone but believe me, it’s preferable to the alternative!  On the bright side, you’re spared having to learn a new system for another year.

Full details on invoice dates, when the booking system will open, booking priority periods and restrictions etc, will follow in the next day or two – there’s quite a bit of info to take in so it warrants its own Bunkum.  If there are any changes to your membership details or status from last year, please let me know asap – it will save time for all concerned.

Our Maintenance team have had a more successful time – here’s an update from Steve McLennan:

Roof: Three guys from Terry Hunt Commercial Roofing (Tauranga) stayed two nights 1 & 2 May and got two-and-a-half days work completed installing 500kg of new flashings. The extensions for the short sheets on the pantry/men’s bathroom roof were a slightly different profile so they’re coming back for a few hours work when the weather clears in the coming week or two. They’re confident the repairs they’ve made will solve our problems, but suggested a full re-screw of the roof might be a good idea to complete next summer if necessary. An inspection hatch was added to the outdoor tank as has been requested by DOC.

Water tank: Two guys from Timbertanks (Tuakau) stayed one night at the lodge 1 May and completed installation of the liner in the new tank the next day. I siphoned a few feet of water from the outside tank into the new tank over night and uncovered the downpipe scuppers and opened the appropriate valves to allow rain water into both tanks. I’m going back to finish installing the ski racks in the coming weeks and will check on progress with filling then.

This was important work – the roof work will hopefully take care of the annoying leaks we’ve been seeing in the last few seasons, and the tank liner brings us back to full water storage – thanks Steve.

Due to a timetable a clash Juniors Weekend has been moved to August 10 & 11.  This is a new addition to the club calendar, a weekend designed to get our juniors up and flying, with dedicated instructors.  Our club captain will have more info on this in a later bunkum.

An addendum to last bunkum’s item on the Tukino Fathers – I failed to mention Christie life member Fred Houtman who, along with Doug Downs and Neil Callaghan, donated the commemorative plaque – sorry Fred!  Unfortunately Fred was unable to attend the ceremony. Here’s a picture of the Christiania ‘Fathers of Tukino Lodge’ on their visit to Tukino Lodge in 2015: 

Neil Callaghan, Doug Downs, Brian Reynolds, Kevin Williams, Fred Houtman, Tom Patterson

I had a nice email recently from an ex-member, Peter Stock, that’s worth sharing:

I was an active member of the club until Xmas 1969, when I transferred to Dunedin. Since then I have been active with the Otago Ski Club, but have continued my Christie membership in order to keep up with the club news. Now that I am in my 80s, I have realized that my dream of further holidays at the club will not  happen. So, I reluctantly request that my name be removed from the club’s membership register.
However, as a Life Member and ex President of OSC, I feel obliged to invite your members to visit our website  Also I am sure they would get a warm welcome if they visited our lodge when skiing on Coronet Peak.  Wishing you and the Club a great future.

Anyone fancy a weekend on Coronet Peak?

Construction on the Whakapapa Gondola continues furiously – although the target opening of 1 June won’t be met, talk is now of the end of June – keep those fingers crossed.  You can see photos and updates on the Mt Ruapehu website:

Keep your eyes open for Bunkum # 4 in the next day or two – time to get down to business!


CSC Bunkum # 4 2019 - Invoices and Bookings

17 May 2019

It’s almost time to kick off the 2019 season by sending out your subscription invoices and opening the booking system!

Invoices for the 2019 season will be emailed to all members between May 18 and June 1.  Once payment has been received, access codes to the booking system will be emailed on either Wednesday June 5 for members who have priority booking rights (see No 1. below), or Friday June 7 for the rest of us.

We will be continuing the rules introduced in 2015 designed to encourage participation in official ski & board programs and club races, increase the number of members that can stay at the lodge over the school holidays, and improve the effectiveness of the booking system. To remind you of the changes:

1.  A brief priority booking period will be given to members who have an intention for at least one of their immediate family members to participate in a ski/board mountain program run by Mt Ruapehu (formerly RAL), or other providers.  Details of all Programmes run by Mt Ruapehu can be found here.  There’s the Academy Weekend programme (what used to be called Flyers and Warriors), Kids’ Holiday Crew school holiday programme, competitive race coaching with lots of timing options, and an Adult Academy for those of you who don’t want the kids to get away on you.  Too late for me I’m afraid …

The priority period also applies to:

  • members who are dedicated to representing Christie in the inter-club ski race series.  This requires that they race for Christie in Christiania Derby as well as at least two of the other three club races (see the calendar).
  • members booking in for Juniors weekend

To take advantage of the priority period:

  • Email me ( as soon as possible confirming who in your family will be participating in a 2019 program or Juniors Weekend, or the club races you are intending to compete in
  • You will be sent your invoice early in the week of May 20
  • You need to pay your invoice promptly – I will then email your password to access the booking system on Wednesday June 5.  (Non priority members who have paid their subs will be sent their details two days later, on Friday June 7)
  • You can make your bookings as normal

Please note, this isn’t about giving members on programs a constant booking advantage throughout the season – you only get a booking advantage for two days – then the priority booking opportunity falls away. Obviously those who participate in the early booking and then don’t participate in a mountain program will be referred to the Committee.

In both school holiday periods, bookings will be limited to blocks of 4 nights from the time bookings open in early June until June 25, a 2 week period.  After June 25 the restriction will be removed.  This will allow a greater number of families access to the lodge during these peak times (as long as members get “active” and book before June 25!). You must book for 4 nights – not more or LESS – you cannot just book for the weekend. The holiday periods are:

          July school holidays (the reference to dates below are the nights you will be staying):

  • Block 1: Friday 5 July to Monday 8 July (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Tuesday 9 July
  • Block 2: Tuesday 9 July to Friday 12 July (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Saturday 13 July
  • Block 3: Saturday 13 July to Tuesday 16 July (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Wednesday 17 July
  • Block 4: Wednesday 17 July to Saturday 20 July (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Sunday 21 July

           Sept / Oct school holidays (again, the reference is to nights):

  • Block 1: Friday 27 September to Monday 30 September (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Tuesday 1 September
  • Block 2: Tuesday 1 October to Friday 4 October (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Saturday 5 October
  • Block 3: Saturday 5 October to Tuesday 8 October (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Wednesday 9 October
  • Block 4: Wednesday 9 October to Saturday 12 October (inclusive) - i.e. leave the lodge during the day on Sunday 13 October

Please remember, especially new members: When booking make sure that each stay of consecutive nights is made on a separate booking, i.e. has its own booking number. This will save enormous amounts of admin for our heroic Bookings Manager, Jenny Muir, if you want to change your booking.


  • Are family members going to participate in a mountain program?
  • Do you want to be at the lodge for a part of the school holidays?

If so, start thinking about your dates NOW!


CSC Bunkum #5 2019 - Invoices have been sent!

26 May 2019

All invoices for 2019 subscriptions have been sent – if you have not received yours, please contact me as soon as possible!

As per Bunkum #4, once payment has been received access codes to the booking system will be emailed on:

  • Wednesday June 5 for members who have priority booking rights
  • Friday June 7 for the rest of us

You can see information on Mt Ruapehu’s programmes here.  For those of you wanting to participate in a program, now’s the time to start planning. 


CSC Bunkum #6 2019 - All systems are go - ish

28 June 2019

It’s almost July and I’m told Happy Valley is the place to be.  The SkyWaka is almost complete, it’s in the functional testing phase – you can see the latest RAL video release here.  It’s looking good – I’m looking forward to hopping aboard and being whisked directly to the Knoll Ridge!

Pedro and Dallas have been in residence for a week and the lodge has its first members up this weekend.  Ok, so there’s not a lot of snow yet, but we all know it’s coming, right?  It’s certainly cold enough where I am …

The 62nd Christiania Derby will be run on Saturday August 3.  For newer members who may not be familiar Derby, it’s the first in a series of inter-club races held at Whakapapa each year, normally attracting 150-200 entries, and free for club members.  You don’t need to be a racer, it’s a lot of fun just to take part.  The highlight of the event for many is prize giving and the after-match function held at the lodge in the evening.  Please let Kirk Hannaford know if you’re interested in participating -  There are still a few bunks available and, if Christie is full, our bookings officer, Jenny Muir, will investigate accommodation options at one of the nearby lodges.  Please email if you want to pursue this option.  For new families, we love kids, but because of the after-match, Derby weekend is probably better suited to teenagers than youngsters.

We have a new ski rack system:

“What kind if magic is this?” I can hear you say.  It’s the Totti Ski Button rack - one ski hangs by its binding toe piece, the other ski uses its ski brake to stay connected to its partner - simple and ingenious.  Thanks to Steve McLennan for sourcing and installing these.

Thanks to all members who have paid their 2019 subscription.  Remember, if you haven’t paid your subs, you can’t use the booking system!  We have a number of unpaid members who hold lockers and/or ski racks.  Please be aware that, as we have a waiting list for these, if you haven’t paid your subs, your locker and/or rack may be reassigned to another member.

Booking restrictions have now been removed and, while we have a good base of bookings, there are still lots of bunks available through both school holidays and all weekends.

Access to the lodge has been a little difficult while the Sky Waka has been under construction but we’re hoping all will be back to normal soon.  I’m told the best way to the lodge is straight up the Rockgarden, left to Victoria Lodge (Vic) then down to Christie.  If you’re in any doubt, please give the lodge a call.

We’ve had 3 families join in the last couple of months – welcome to:

  • Roger and Lucy Campbell with Kasper and Klara from Cambridge
  • Jason Neely and Chelsea de Berry with Zambia, Ziggy and Otis from Matakana
  • Peter and Sarah Chapman with Zoe, Adam and Lincoln from Tauranga

See you in front of the fire soon!


CSC Bunkum #7 2019 - Derby, the Few Days ...

21 July 2019

It’s the end of the school holidays already.  The lodge has been humming along and, while the conditions may not have been optimal, good times have been had.  Snow has been falling and the base is starting to build.  We should be rocking soon.

The 62nd Christiania Derby will be run on Saturday August 3.  For newer members who may not be familiar Derby, it’s the first in a series of inter-club races held at Whakapapa each year, normally attracting 150-200 entries, and free for club members.  You don’t need to be a racer, it’s a lot of fun just to take part.  The highlight of the event for many is prize giving and the after-match function held at the lodge in the evening.  Please let Kirk Hannaford know if you’re interested in participating -  There are still a couple of bunks available and, if Christie is full, our bookings officer, Jenny Muir, will investigate accommodation options at one of the nearby lodges.  Please email if you want to pursue this option.  For new families, we love kids, but because of the after-match, Derby weekend is probably better suited to teenagers than youngsters.

We also need volunteers to assist with the running of Derby – timekeepers, gate marshals, people to run registration etc.  If you’re coming, please put your hand up – it’s fun and many hands make light work.  You’ll still be able to compete, or in my case, participate, in the racing.  Please let Kirk know if you can help out.

Please be aware that, given the upper lifts are not operating yet, there is a chance that Derby will not be able to run.  If this is the case I will notify you as soon as I’m able.

We have our annual Few Days events around Derby.  The Few Days are a great way to enjoy the lodge and mountain without bothersome interruptions from the opposite sex.  For a change this year we’re running Ladies Few Days before Derby, on Wednesday July 31 and Thursday August 1.  Rachel Ward,, and Kate Yeo,, are trying to firm up who will be attending so they can sort potential fun, exquisite food and frivolity.  Please let them know if you’re coming, or would like some more information.

Mens Few Days are being held after Derby on Monday and Tuesday, August 5 and 6.  Stories abound from previous years - fun and good company are guaranteed.  You may even get some skiing in …

As a special incentive the Committee has agreed to hosting guests at member rates for both Mens and Ladies Few Days.  You book in your guest using a separate booking to your own, making sure to change the “membership type” to non-member and select Junior Guest (this gives you a rate of $48 per night). In the details write “adult guest” and include their name. This means you can do it all yourself without Jenny having to any of it for you.  There are still lots of bunks left for both Few Days – grab some friends and have yourselves a few days to remember!

With the completion of the SkyWaka, normal access to the lodge is now available again.

Roadside assistance – we’ve been told that RAL are now not providing ANY assistance to drivers on the Bruce Rd.  In the event of a roadside event you will need to have alternative assistance measures in place.

Fresh herbs are always appreciated at the lodge – if you’re coming up and have herbs in the garden, Pedro would be grateful for anything you can spare. 


CSC Bunkum #8 2019 - Roundup and Housekeeping

24 August 2019

It has to be said, it’s been a slow start to the season.  We’ve had long spells of bad weather, even by Ruapehu standards.  There’s been a steady stream of members at the lodge who have become expert card players and caught up on quite a bit of reading.  Top job for August has been digging out the lodge exits.  The good news is that it’s dropped a lot of snow on the mountain and we should be in for a long spring. 

We’ve run a few activities recently, with mixed results.  In order:

Ladies Few Days, July 31 & August 1 – in keeping with the tradition of the last few years, LFD was unfortunately another fizzer, with no takers.  We’ll be re-evaluating this event before next season.

Christiania Derby, August 3 – unfortunately we were forced to cancel this year’s Derby due to bad weather.  However we still had a lodge full of brave Christianians who hosted a healthy contingent of like-minded clubbies from around the village for the Derby after match.  It’s always good to catch up with other club members.

Mens Few Days, August 5 & 6 – ten or so of the club faithful stayed on after Derby for a relaxing couple of days with good food, great company and the odd golden single malt or two.  The most strenuous activity this year was digging out the cars on departure day.

It’s common around this time of year to remind members of a few housekeeping rules we need to bear in mind:

Guest bookings: members are reminded of their responsibilities when booking guests into the lodge.  A requirement is that the member is present to host their guests, but the committee can waive that provided the member provides guests all necessary information and support. Recently we had a guest group of 10 for 2 nights, without English as their first language, and where the sponsoring member was not present.  This was allowed by committee but unfortunately the other obligations were not carried out.  The group arrived ill-prepared for mountain conditions, and ill-prepared for club life.  For example they had street clothing and footwear, suitcases, and appeared to expect hotel service – they did not do duties or fit into the running of the lodge.  Unfortunately the group also arrived at a time when there was not an appointed party leader, and just as the custodians were preparing dinner.  As a result Dallas and Pedro had to go to considerable effort to look after these people, well above and beyond the expectations of our custodians – and not their job.  We are very lucky that they are able and willing to go that extra mile.  If you are considering introducing guests to the lodge – it is your responsibility as a member to look after them, either in person or by providing necessary support.

Unsupervised children: it’s against the law to leave children under 14 on their own without taking reasonable steps for their care and supervision.  Our lodge rules state: Junior members under 14 years of age must be supervised in the Lodge at all times.  We are aware that occasionally our younger Juniors (and several of our Seniors!) can't last the whole day on the slopes and Christiania provides an ideal safe haven for rest and recharge.  In order to make sure everyone enjoys their lodge experience, we have a very straight forward rule (as set out above) and some expectations around this:

  • If you are leaving a child under 14 at the lodge, there must be someone there responsible for their care.  This has to be an expressed agreement between you and the supervising person, with details about when you will be back and how to contact you if needed.   It must not be implied that any adults at the lodge will automatically care for children left there.  Most older members 'resting up' at the lodge for a time are only too happy to keep an eye on the young ones, but please be courteous and ask first; remember - your children are your responsibility.
  • Members 14 years and over can be left at the lodge unsupervised and, at the discretion of their parents, be left in charge of younger ones, but common sense prevails in these cases - you know your children best!
  • The Custodians aren't employed to supervise children - they are actually off-duty during the middle of the day - this is their own time.

Junior bookings must be made with a parent or sponsor, i.e. another senior member, staying at the lodge.  Any sponsors need to be clearly named in the junior booking, and must agree in advance to this arrangement.  We have had occasion in the past where parents have been asked to collect their children – this is unpleasant for all concerned.

Enough serious stuff – a couple of fun events coming up on the mountain:

Rangatira Alpine Trophy Race, Saturday 31 August - Rangatira’s premier annual racing event, the Jägermeister Rangatira Alpine Trophy is part of the Mt Ruapehu Interclub Race Series and is raced by teams in open, masters, juniors, snow boarders and indivdiual veterans (60+). The overall Rangatira Alpine Trophy is awarded to the fastest club on the mountain.  Followed by prizegiving and a party! 

Tongariro Juniors Race – Saturday 7 September.  This is a great fun event open to skiers and boarders under 18 on race day.  It’s followed by a prizegiving with lots of spot prizes.  I’d encourage any junior to give it a go – the emphasis is on FUN!  For more information, please have a look at the race page on the Tongariro website.

And remember, Christie will cover entry fees for any club member competing in another Whakapapa club event.  So you have no excuse …

There’s good weather just around the corner, I can feel it coming …


CSC Bunkum #9 2019 - Club Races - date change, end of Season Work Party

Finally we’ve had a block of fine settled weather with all facilities running.  Conditions on the mountain have been absolutely perfect over the weekend and the lodge has been full to the brim.  But there’s still lots of space available midweek and most weekends, even through the school holidays.  I predict they’ll fill up fast.

Christie Club Races date change – unfortunately, due to a logistics issue on the mountain, RAL are now unable to run the club races on Saturday September 28, and we have had to move them to the following weekend, Saturday October 5.  If you’re not familiar with our annual club races, it’s a small and less formal event than the interclub races, open to club members only, and with the emphasis on fun and participation.  There are cups to be won!  No registration required, just turn up!

Groomers operating near the lodge – we now have a groomed trail running past the lodge, uphill from Victoria Lodge and downhill to Happy Valley.  Please be aware that groomers will be running in both directions past the lodge at various times of the day, and they can be difficult to hear if you’re skiing out from behind the building – please take extra care.

Last minute bookings – IMPORTANT - if you’re making a booking within 24 hours of arriving at the lodge, you must:
  • ensure all information is correct & complete when generating your booking as it’s not possible to make corrections with the 24hr timeframe
  • give Pedro and Dallas a call at the lodge (07 892 3829) to make sure they’re expecting you – this is required for Health and Safety reasons as well as for catering.

The End of Season Work Party will be held on Saturday & Sunday, November 9 & 10.  This is where we put the lodge to bed for summer - a big clean up with a few maintenance jobs thrown in.  While there's lots to do for younger members at the pre-season work party, the November work party is better suited to Seniors, or older juniors.  Remember this will credit your 2020 work party levy - $160 per senior member.  Those that haven’t done a work party, please volunteer - the weekend will need at least 8 - 10 people to run.  Please register your interest with me - 

Committee membership – your club needs you!  We love our club and our fantastic lodge on Mt Ruapehu, with all it has to offer, all year ‘round.  Christiania couldn’t exist without a core of energetic members who meet once a month through winter and are responsible for the day to day tasks involved in keeping the club and lodge running.  We're always looking for new faces, new energy, new ways of thinking.  Please consider what you can do to keep Christie strong, vibrant and viable.  If you’d like more information on what's involved, feel free to contact one of the current committee.  We’d love to hear from you.

Here’s an update from Rachel Ward on some of the recent interclub races:
  • Ngauruhoe Trophy Race - We had an Open and Junior Ski Teams plus a Snowboarding Team patiently waiting around with bad weather delaying the Saturday event until mid-morning on Sunday. All teams eventually whizzed down, despite the lack of visibility and strong winds, to make us proud. The Snowboarders consisting of William McVickers, Richard Mocke, Ollie Mocke and Keara Mocke got a podium Silver Medal spot. Wahoo, well done! Wow, can the Ngauruhoe Ski Club throw a party! Bring your dancing shoes next year everyone and join the fun!
  • Rangatira Alpine Trophy Race - We had 4 Teams entered in the Rangitira Ski races. Geat participation from 17 Christiania racers. It was fun event, a bit icy for the early racers however with the Valley T breaking down in the middle of the race it made waiting and getting to the top of the race course a challenge. Fun party afterwards.
  • Haensli Cup - 7 keen Christiania Skiers raced with limited visibility down K Road. All were present for the Prizegiving but some struggled to leave RSC as they lost their navigational skills during the proceedings.

Rachel, who is second only to Pedro and Dallas in nights spent at the lodge this year, has high hopes for Ladies Few Days next year: “The planned Ladies Few Days did not fly this year with a terrible weather forecast etc, however a great bunch of us (see photo) had an Impromptu Ladies celebration recently with lots of us present and lots of laughter. Next year we plan to schedule another Ladies Few Days, probably in September when RAL have their Ladies Lesson Week AND there will be amazing Spring Skiing like there is right now!”

I have some sad news - Ian Sommerville, one of Christiania’s founding members and President of the club from 1966 to 1969, passed away recently in Hamilton after a short illness.  Ian made a significant contribution to Christie over his many years with the club.  Our condolences go to Ian’s wife, Laura, and family.

Please look out for an email to follow concerning limitations to Bruce Rd access when bad weather is forecast – it gets its own message to avoid the TLDR (too long, didn’t read) syndrome.

We have 5 or 6 weeks of skiing left for the year, some time off work is in order!


CSC Bunkum #10 2019 - AGM details, Club races ...

24 October 2019

Dear members and friends

The 2019 season draws to a close.  Monday’s the last official day at Whakapapa, it’s a long weekend, there’s a great crew booked in, and still 10 bunks available.  The last weekend is usually a big one - last minute trip to the mountain, anyone?

If you like skiing in shorts (and who doesn’t?) Mt Ruapehu have announced weekend skiing and riding through November:

“This season has been particularly challenging due to weather. We are grateful for your understanding and patience this winter. To thank you for the continued support, we are going to OPEN the Valley T Bar for skiing and riding 10am-2pm during fine WEEKENDS ALL NOVEMBER.

This will be FREE for all our 2019 Season Pass holders and Life Pass holders. This will also be FREE for everyone who has purchased their 2020 Anytime Season Pass!”

2020 Earlybird Season Passes are available until October 31 for the low price of $449 Adult and $269 Youth.  There’s also now a mid-week only option for $349/$209.  This is a steal and not to be missed!  Adult prices rise to $699 on November 1 so be in quick.  Details here.

The End of Season Work Party will run on Saturday & Sunday, November 9 & 10.  So far around 12 people have put their hands up to attend but we could always do with more – please let me know if you’re interested in helping out.  Remember - it saves you money on next year’s subs!  For those of you who have already volunteered, thanks!  You’ll receive more details shortly.

The Christiania Club Race weekend was fabulous. The mountain was closed due to bad weather on Saturday so Toboggan Races and a Snow Sculpture Event were held followed by a fun Prizegiving and a game of Donkey. On Sunday the weather was spectacular and the Staircase Race Course saw participation from a fully booked Club. Excellent skiing and racing was witnessed. There was so much laughter and encouragement amongst our clubbies watching the racing on the sunny sideline. Thanks everyone for the fantastic teamwork to help run the event.

  • Fastest Christiania Snowboarder: Daniel Ward
  • Fastest Christiania Skier: Ella Buckley
  • Second Fastest Christiania Skier: Zoe Jones 10 years - What a future Zoe!
  • Toboggan Champion: Hayley Fulton

Male Skiers

  • Under 8: Lachlan Jones
  • Under 12: Julius Bowen
  • Under 16: Harry Ward
  • Masters: Steve Roper
  • Open:  Nick Plant

Ladies Skiers

  • Under 12: Zoe Jones
  • Under 16: Ester Williams
  • Masters: Amy Williams
  • Open: Ella Buckley

Congrats to all our winners – and don’t forget to pick up your trophy at:

The 2019 Christiania AGM and Prizegiving will be held at The McMeekan Centre, Ruakura Research Centre (AgResearch), 10 Bisley Road, Hamilton, on Thursday November 21.  The meeting will begin at 6:00pm, you are welcome to arrive from 5:30.  I’ll send a further email closer to the time containing the meeting Agenda, 2019 Financial Report, President’s Report and other relevant documents.

Don’t forget, you’re also able to use the lodge through summer – with so much to do in the Ruapehu region it’s a great accommodation option - $25 each per night for a minimum of two people.  You’ll need to self-cater - sadly the pantry will be closed until next winter.  Book in the normal way, but ensure you change the Membership Type to “Off Season”:

I hope you’ve had a great season.  Many thanks to Pedro and Dallas for all their hard work looking after us through the winter, and to all the Party Leaders who helped everything tick along smoothly.  We have a fantastic facility on the mountain, and a great membership - I hope to see you all back next year.