Lochie Win (7), of Pisa Moorings, has set himself a goal slopes in the country to raise money for the Cancer Society of New Zealand. His inspiration is his mum, Rebecca, who is in remission from a rare form of the disease. His dad, Luke, reports.
Well, four days of rest equals being ski-ready for the weekend.
It’s Friday night, the ute is packed again and ready for the early morning getaway to Fox Peak ski area in Fairlie, Mackenzie District.
The alarm starts buzzing at 4.45am the next morning and it’s time for action up, Lochie, it’s time to head for the Fox!”
Before we know it, we are heading up the Lindis in time for daybreak. There is something special about seeing the sun rise over our country.
On arrival in Fairlie, before we could even think about skiing, we had one important thing to get Bakehouse pie good!
Just as we were heading back to the ute we hear a voice call out, “Good morning, you must be Lochie and Luke.”
“Yep, that’s us,” we replied.
It was Leigh and her husband Alistair, long time club members of Fox Peak.
They offered to show us the way and a bed for the night at their family bach on the mountain.
Off we went on an adventure that just keeps getting better, meeting awesome people and skiing wicked mountains.
We arrived at the river that earlier this year washed the access crossing away, and looking around we saw how much hard work the members of Fox Peak ski club had put into fixing the crossing spirit at its best.
At the start of the snowline we found the main accommodation lodge. What a cool spot it was.
We carried on up to the field and when we arrived it was a place we could not have imagined, it left us speechless at how cool it was.
We looked up as far as we could see and saw fresh snow calling to us.
Off we went, heading for the top tow with Blair, a dedicated Fox Peak club member and a real good skier. Some of Blair’s mates came along to help show us the way and Carlos had some fun together.
The day soon disappeared but it was far from over, as the club was holding its yearly Full Moon Fever night night skiing and heaps of good yarns. It was great.
Lochie skied until around 10pm with some new mates he had made. He sure was tired when I got him into his bunk bed. He was asleep in less than a minute.
I went outside to check out the lights of Timaru on the horizon, when I suddenly saw a skidoo whizzing my way.
It pulled up and a voice rang out of the dark, “G’day I’m Footy, you must be Lochie’s dad.”
“Yep, that’s me,” I said.
“I’m just checking out the lights of the big smoke.”
“I’ll show you something better see that light moving way up north in those mountains?” Footy said.
“That’s the snow groomers at Mt Hutt.”
It looked awesome in the clear sky with a full moon.
It’s an amazing feeling getting to stay the night at a ski club on a snow covered mountain, a real New Zealand skiing experience.
The next day arrived and after a quick breakfast Lochie was back on the snow with his mates. We had planned to head home early but when I saw how much fun he was having I just thought, “hey it’s not every day we get to be here.”
The best thing was seeing my son loving his adventure.
Fox Peak was a hard place to leave. Around $200 will get you a season pass and a club membership, so if you want the experience of a lifetime, put Fox Peak on your list.
We arrived home for a quick pit stop as Lochie had school skiing the next day at Cardrona.
We had made a plan that while Lochie was out on the slopes, I would spend time teaching Rebecca, Lochie’s mum, how to ski.
I managed to get a quick lap in with Lochie and his instructor while Rebecca rested her feet.
I had not planned on this moment happening so soon, but as I just hung back from his group I saw Lochie hit another gear with his speed and turns.
When we got to the top of the chairlift I said, “I’ll catch up at 3pm mate” and off he went.
I stood and watched him ski away with his group. He headed over to the other ridge to drop off and I watched him going down this steep slope. I felt myself getting really emotional for the right reasons.
There he was, my wee man, 7 years old and cutting it down the steep slopes and having fun. Being a dad is by far the best job in the world.