Just Back: New Zealand Snowboarded
...from New ZealandJake Burton, snowboard mogul
Every summer, I head to the Southern Hemisphere looking for a winter environment to test our new gear. Mount Hutt, 50 miles west of Christchurch on the South Island, is the perfect place. The mountains suddenly spike right up out of otherwise flat terrain, and the wide-open faces are perfect for boarding. I spent all my time on the mountain and can't even remember the name of the hotel--I just crashed there.
kiwi conditions: From certain peaks, you can see both the east and the west coasts of the island. And on the same day you can surf a great wave and snowboard on a killer mountain. The scene in New Zealand is totally happening.
native attitude: Midwestern friendly combined with West Coast mellow. The snow may be unpredictable, but the people always make you glad you're there.
to eat: Lamb--I don't eat a ton of meat, but down there it's the way to go. The venison is incredible, too.
boarding heaven: It's still Stowe--that's why I live in Vermont. If your favorite mountain isn't where you live, maybe you should consider moving.