Interview with Alexei Sotskov: Snow Farm Ski School Director
What is the Snow Farm's Nordic season?
Normally the ski season at the Snow Farm goes from very mid-June until the end of September. However most reliable and good snow is from beginning of July until mid-September
How does one get there?
Flights from anywhere to Queenstown (about 50K from Snow Farm or some skiers from Europe flying to Christchurch (300K driving). I fly Boston - LA- Aukland - Queenstown. All journey takes about 24 hours and in a proximity of $2,000 round trip.
How many KM of trails?
Snow Farm Nordic Center maintains on daily basis approx 45K grooming with a heavy machine. In addition there is lots of back country skiing what I actually like the best - the scenery of the Lord of the Ring movie shooting will definitely make you feel special!
What is its elevation?
The Snow Farm Nordic center as well as Snow Farm Loge is situated at approx 1500 meters above the sea level
Does it offer housing as well as trails?
Snow Farm Lodge is capable of hosting about 100 guests and most of the national teams, who goes to NZ for training staying right there. There is also a restaurant on site providing excellent food options for day guests and lodge occupants.
Does it have a Nordic Retail Shop?
There is a small retail shop offering nordic essentials. Most recreational skiers renting gear from the Snow Farm rental shop, where equipment for different activities is offered at a reasonable price. Salomon skis and boots for racing (skating and classical), recreational skis or eve telemark skis as well as snowshoes, tubing is offered for customers
What National Team and athletes are there now.
This past season skiers from: Russia, Canada, Japan, Korea, Slovakia, Australia, Germany representing its A national teams, as well as may individual skiers from lots of places
What races does it host.
Annually FIS Australia/New Zealand Continenetal Cup races, every other year (next year will be taking place) multy sport 100% Pure New Zealand Winter Games - FIS level races
What is your function there?
I started to go to NZ in 2008 as a Junior program ski coach. By the time I got involved with the skiers who are training under Snow Sports NZ and getting ready for World Champs and OWG. I was lucky to coach NZ Nordic ski team in Vancouver 2010 and Oslo in 2011. Currently I managing ski school and coordinate competitions as well as coaching athletes and masters group.
What is your job when you are not in NZ?
I am Director of Sports on Snow and Nordic coach at Vermont Academy - Independent college prep school in Saxtons River, VT.