'Ski addicts' get early run

Methven local Ryan Grice frontside air in triple bowl at Mt Hutt.
Methven local Ryan Grice frontside air in triple bowl at Mt Hutt.
Skier Jason Collins airs in triple bowl at Mt Hutt.
Skier Jason Collins airs in triple bowl at Mt Hutt.
Methven local Ryan Grice slashes some slushy snow at Mt Hutt.
Methven local Ryan Grice slashes some slushy snow at Mt Hutt.
Methven local Ryan Grice does an indy nosebone in triple bowl at Mt Hutt.
Methven local Ryan Grice does an indy nosebone in triple bowl at Mt Hutt.
Methven local Ryan Grice hikes to get some turns at Mt Hutt.
Methven local Ryan Grice hikes to get some turns at Mt Hutt.
EARLY TURN: Methven local Ryan Grice does a slash in triple bowl at Mt Hutt. Methven and the Canterbury plains in the background.
EARLY TURN: Methven local Ryan Grice does a slash in triple bowl at Mt Hutt. Methven and the Canterbury plains in the background.
Methven local Ryan Grice last indy of the day at Mt Hutt.
Methven local Ryan Grice last indy of the day at Mt Hutt.

Four "ski addicts" were able to get their fix on Mt Hutt after the weekend's weather bomb coated the mountain with snow.

Methven resident Ryan Grice, 32, has spent the past two days snowboarding down the deserted Mt Hutt Ski Area trails.

He has been snowboarding for about 17 years and said it was the first time he had "rode the mountain" in March.

SNOW ADDICT: Ryan Grice enjoys early Autumn snow at Mt Hutt yesterday.
SNOW ADDICT: Ryan Grice enjoys early Autumn snow at Mt Hutt yesterday.

"Being a snowboarder, you hang out all summer for snow and you never get a whole mountain to yourself, so it's pretty awesome," he said.

"We were pumped driving up the access road, and when we got to the snow line we were just fizzing."

The New Zealand ski season usually runs from June to October, but last weekend there was a snowfall of about 50 centimetres over Mt Hutt.

Grice shared the mountain alongside Duane Schroeder, 36, and James Collins, 34, who had brought his father up to ski the mountain for his birthday.

Paul Collins, who referred to himself as a "ski addict", turned 63 on Sunday and said it was a "pretty awesome" present to head up Mt Hutt.

He has been skiing the slopes for about 25 years but had never had a birthday ride.

Mt Hutt Ski Area marketing manager James Urquhart said it was a "big novelty" to have such a heavy snowfall at this time of year.

The Press