Winter is on the way. Late on Monday night, NZSki fired up its 217 snow guns at Coronet Peak for the first time this year when temperatures dropped to -7degC in the Wakatipu.

That was coupled with a 5cm natural snowfall at the summit and a "skiff'' of snow down to the base area, ski area manager Ross Copland said.

"Once the wild weather passed and the winds died down, we were in full snow-making mode, making about 600 cubic metres of snow in 12 hours on main trails.

"The first snow is always a huge boost for staff and there's a real sense of excitement and anticipation in Queenstown.''


Mt Hutt is due to open for the 2016 season on June 10, with Coronet Peak and Cardrona scheduled to open the following day.

The Remarkables is scheduled to open on June 18, followed by Treble Cone on June 23.

A spokeswoman from Cardrona Alpine Resort said it had been snowing off and on there for the past week.