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From the yellow and green runs reserved for beginners finding their feet to the web of blue and black runs ready to entertain intermediate and advanced skiers, Thredbo offers something for everyone. Beginners can start off on Friday Flat, intermediates have the Cruiser, Basin, and Central Spur areas, and experienced skiers can sink their teeth into the ‘Big Five’, Australia’s five longest runs, as well as miles of backcountry terrain peppered with natural features and off-piste challenges.
Thredbo’s loaded with a stack of terrain parks for snowboarders to shred, starting with the Easy Does It park to introduce kids to rollers, berms, boxes and small jumps and the Cruiser Park for beginners to start jumping and jibbing, then Antons Park, Antons Jib Line, the early-season Kozzie Park, and two Ridercross coarses loaded with banks, beams, jumps and rollers for intermediate and advanced boarders to show off their skills.
With a free three- or five-day kids lift pass for every adult pass purchased, the Kids Ski Free deal is a bargain for families (check the website for dates). The village offers runs to suit children of all abilities, as well as lessons to introduce little ones to skiing and snowboarding. Kids as young as three can join programs tailored to different levels of ability and ski disciplines, not to mention private lessons and childcare for children aged six to six months.
The Thredbo Snow Play Park at the base station area of the village is open every day for tubing, tobogganing, and just generally playing around in the snow if your kids aren’t quite ready to hit the slopes. It’s free to enter and you can bring your own tubes and toboggans, or they’re available to rent, as well as boots, jackets, and pants.
Children won’t be bored for a second thanks to the bumper line-up of family-friendly events – Family Fun Nights with the Thredboland animal mascots every Thursday between 29 June and 14 September, Lego Snow Festivals during the July (1-15 July) and September (23-30 September) school holidays, Torah Bright’s Mini Shred (Sunday 9 July), and interschool races (10-15 July).
The packed events calendar luring ‘snow-cialisers’ to the Snowy Mountains each winter proves that the slopes are only half of Thredbo’s appeal – and the 60th anniversary celebrations kick off with an opening weekend party on Saturday June 10 and continuing until an Octoberfest extravaganza on the last weekend of the season, Saturday 30 September and Sunday 1 October.
Keller Bar’s Skate Nights (every Thursday from 22 June to 7 September) and Full Moon Parties (Sunday 9 July, Tuesday 8 August, Wednesday 6 September), plus Schuss Bar’s Locals Theme Nights – Disco (Sunday 2 July), Create Your Own Superhero (Sunday 23 July), Tribal (Sunday 6 August), Slopestyle (Sunday 20 August), Dungeons and Drag Queens (Sunday 3 September), Tropical Pool Party (Sunday 10 September) – are regular highlights, while Thredbo Uni Week (16-22 July), Lawski (Saturday 5 August), G.H Mumm Poolside Après Party (11-12 August), the Australian Snow Uni Games (27-31 August), Snowtunes Festival (1-2 September), and Pond Skim (Saturday 23 September) also cram into the calendar. Thredbo’s websitehas all the details.
The Flare Run has illuminated the Supertrail with pyrotechnics for more than three decades, and the Saturday night institution fires up again in 2017. Advanced skiers and boarders over the age of 18 can apply to take part with a test at the Kosciuszko Snow Sports meeting area at 4pm every Saturday – if you pass, you just need to make a $15 donation to charity to register. Even kids can get involved every Thursday night on the gentle Easy Does It slopes, lighting up the night sky with twinkling LED flares. Friday Flat also hosts twilight riding every Thursday and Saturday night in July and August.
Skiers and boarders keen to scratch their competitive itch will shred it out for a $35,000 prize pool up for grabs at the five events of the Thredbo Snow Series – Night Rails (Friday 30 June), Ridercross (Friday 21 July), Freeride on the Bluff (Friday 4 August), Slopestyle (Friday 1 September), and Big Air (Saturday 2 September). Other big races include the NSW Moguls Series (22-23 July), Thredbo Masters Race (Saturday 29 July), GH Mumm Top to Bottom Race (Saturday 12 August), Transfer Banked Slalom (Saturday 19 August), and catch a sneak peek of the latest snow gear at the Rossignol’s demo weekends (1-2 July, 29-30 July, 26-27 August) and SKImag’s demo weekend (8-9 July). You can find the full events schedule on Thredbo’s website.
NASTAR – the National Standard Race – allows racers of all abilities across the planet to compete with each other through a handicap system . . . and the only course in Australia just so happens to be in Thredbo. It’s open Wednesday to Sunday from 10am to 2pm on the lower Supertrail beneath the Kosciuszko Express Chairlift, and it’s free to register, so sign up your family and friends and start racing!
If you want to go at a slower pace, you can take a guided two-hour Toyota Mountain Tour during July and August to get to know the mountain, follow a guide on an off-piste adventure through the backcountry, strap on your snow shoes and trek to the top of Mount Kosciuszko, get the adrenaline pumping with some snow biking, try disc golf around the Thredbo Golf Course . . . and don’t leave the Snowy Mountains without taking a scenic chairlift ride for the views over the Kosciuszko National Park.
Away from the slopes, raise a sweat at the Thredbo Leisure Centre – complete with a heated pool, waterslide, and blow-up obstacle course – or the Acrobatic Centre of Excellence, the NSW Institute of Sport’s training centre for the Winter Olympians of the future that offers classes for kids.
Your trip to the snow doesn’t have to cost a fortune when you choose to stay at Thredbo YHA, the only hostel in the village. Ski season beds are filling up fast so book your getaway now!