Situated on the Kosciuszko Road. There is day parking
available but NO overnight parking. Overnight car parking is available
at Bullocks Flat and the Skitube train runs every half hour to Perisher
Valley. The photo shows the location of the ski trails behind the church,
ambulance and fire stations and the Man From Snowy River hotel and the
NPWS Visitor Centre behind the car park. The skitube terminal is in the
There are a large number of take away food shops and
restaurants located in the Skitube terminal and Perisher Blue centre.
There are four hotels in the village. Ziggi's XC ski shop and the Perisher
Blue's XC hire centre, pharmacy, newsagent, telephones, ATM, are located
in the Perisher Blue centre and a supermarket, medical centre and police
station are located in the Skitube terminal. The NPWS Visitor Centre that
provides up to date grooming and safety information, shelter and toilets
is located on the main road just east of the Skitube terminal. The Post
Office is on the main road 200m west of the Skitube terminal. Activities
for non skiers are limited to snowshoeing and walking. Tobogganing is
restricted to a supervised area at Smiggin Holes.
The Nordic Shelter.
This is maintained by the Cross Country committee of
the NSW Ski Association together with volunteer help and donations from
skiers and is open daily for the public. Please contribute to the
donation box in the shelter when using the facilities which include
waxing room, toilets, hot water for tea and coffee, drink and snack machines
The Nordic shelter is located uphill about 200m south
of the Skitube terminal. A well signposted groomed track starts from the
main road opposite the NPWS visitor Centre at the roadhead, between the
Fire Station and the Man from Snowy River hotel. If this has insufficient
snow, walk up the road beside the Man from Snowy River hotel as far as
the Stables Apartments and the shelter will be found just out of sight,
50m to the left of the road. Note that
this is the ONLY shelter on the trail system apart from Charlotte Pass
The XC Trails.
The NSW Ski Association Perisher Ski Touring map covers
the area from Perisher / Smiggins to Guthega and Charlotte Pass and is
available from XC ski shops in Jindabyne, the NPWS shops and other outlets.
Note that this map does not show the location of the marked trails accurately,
but in practice it is adequate even in poor visibility. KCros has published
the KCros Perisher Trail Map that is available at the Nordic Shelter,
NPWS centres at Jindabyne & Perisher and at Paddy Pallin Jindabyne.
[ map ]
Skiers use these trails at
their own risk. There are no regular patrols in the area so skiers should
tell somebody where they intend to ski and have a map and compass and
adequate warm clothing, water and food for their intended activity. Children
should be in the care of an experienced adult. The weather can change
rapidly with gale force winds, blizzards and poor visibility a
possibility. Snow conditions can vary from soft and slushy to dangerously
icy. The snow and trails often freeze soon after the sun goes off the
snow in the afternoon. Sections of the marked trails may have exposed
rocks or incomplete snow cover.
Marked and groomed trails.
A system of groomed trails start at the Nordic shelter.
The preferred direction of travel on the trails is clockwise but
watch out for some skiers going anti-clockwise. Start off downhill from
the map outside the shelter or take a short detour up to the right. Classical
skiers should ski in the left hand track (if it is provided, but a single
track may be groomed on the right) and skaters should keep to the left
as far as practical. Be considerate of others on the trail and ski in
single file to leave room for others to pass, and if you want to rest
or talk in a group please move off the groomed area. The different
trails are well marked with green pine poles with color coded triangles
at the top. In poor visibility the poles may be difficult to see amongst
snowgums or if they have fallen over. On the Perisher loops there is a
trail map located at each trail intersection.
Beginners will find some level skiing areas at the top
of the first hill on the 2˝ k trail and are warned of a steeper downhill
section marked with a black diamond sign on the final ˝km at the end of
the loop. Nevertheless the 2˝ k trail is often used for race events.
More experienced skiers have the option of branching
off the 2˝ k trail to ski the 5 k or 7˝ k loops which rejoin the
2˝ k trail about 500 m before the Nordic shelter. The 5k loop continues
with a couple of short sharp uphill sections and some undulations until
it doubles back towards the Nordic shelter and the final kilometre is
a great downhill run where all except a couple of the corners are open
and easy to ski. Watch out for the final two corners where the trail meets
the 2˝ k trail as you can gather a
lot of speed here and the final corner is a right angle. (see photo, left)
Some skiers prefer to bale out and ski straight ahead at the first corner
and make a more gentle approach to the 2˝
In the second photo the skier in red is carving the
same turn on his outside ski while the other skier is overtaking on the
inside by skating through the corner.
The 7˝ k trail is
one of the best training trails as it offers about 3 k of gently undulating
terrain where the uphill intervals are generally shorter than on the 5k
The 10 k trail offers skiers a longer trip with more
varied scenery, moderate uphill climbs and a couple of faster downhill
runs. The turnoff for the 10k trail is located about 200 metres
past where the 5k trail leaves the 2˝ k trail, and goes straight ahead
and downhill, while the 5 and 7˝
k trails veer uphill to the right. The back link between the Prussian
Plain trail and the Paddy's Link is just over 2 k and seems further in
a strong wind or poor visibility. In poor visibility some of the poles
can be hard to find as the track makes a couple of dog legs. If you want
to shorten the trip it is easiest to ski back along the 7˝k trail as far
as the 2˝ k junction and then follow that trail to the Nordic Shelter.
Within the trail system are many sunny or sheltered spots for a picnic
but not many places to sit so stomp out a foot hole then sit on your skis
while you enjoy your snack and the scenery.
Races are often held on the marked trails and non-racers
are asked to give way to skiers who are racing so as not to impede their
easiest snow for a beginner to learn on is soft enough for the skis to
leave a track a couple of cm. deep. It should be flat or have a gentle
slope and avoid areas that are covered in footprints, or where the snow
is frozen, or have been skied over by a lot of downhill skiers. A good
area for beginners will be found behind the fire station and it has the
advantage of being close to amenities and transport. It has a short beginners
loop groomed that is totally within sight of the Nordic Shelter. There
are many gentle slopes around the 2 ˝ k
trail and a novice can ski over large open areas with gentle gradients
by skiing off the trail but still be within sight of the trail markers.
A popular area for beginners is off Rock Creek by the Perisher water supply
dam (see picture). One can access the dam by skiing down Rock Creek from
the Kosciuszko Road near Maritz lodge or from the Eiger lodge. To the
south west of the dam is a lovely open valley overlooked on the north
by a row of lodges and bounded on the south by gentle slopes rising to
the Porcupine Trail. Skiers can choose from flat skiing or an infinite
variety of gentle slopes through to steeper telemark hills. This area
is usually sheltered in bad weather and it is ideal for family groups
because it is easy to stay within sight of each other.
An easy ski close to Perisher Centre.
Start at the bridge leading to the quad chair and follow
Perisher Creek upstream to Perisher Gap where the Eyre T-Bar is located.
Care is needed around the old Perisher Chair to keep away from downhillers
but the rest of the trip is a joy on good untracked snow and sunny slopes.
From the Gap you can take the Kosciuszko Rd or retrace your tracks down
the valley. This is suitable for intermediate skiers as the whole route
is within sight of the downhill areas. Descend the two steeper areas by
traversing if necessary.
Marked trails that are not groomed. (but may
be groomed on occasions)
Thompson’s Plain trail, (never
This is an an enjoyable 12˝ k ski
from Perisher to Dainers Gap but it is rare to find enough snow to ski
on. The terrain is gently undulating and there is little shelter from
Prussian Plain on. If you have trouble picking your way over Prussian
Plain you may as well turn back as it will not get any better and you
will find better snow elsewhere. There is usually a good cover of snow
on this trail early in the season. It is worthwhile climbing the
Pretty Point lookout signposted about 1km from Dainer's Gap, but there
are no markers leading to Pretty Point. After a gentle climb there is
a fabulous view over Lake Jindabyne and the town and from the northern
end of the ridge one can look down a valley to Rainbow Lake and Sponar's
Hotel and across to the Plains of Heaven. The photo shows Lake Jindabyne
from the escarpment west of Pretty Point. There is a car park at Dainers
Gap if you want to start skiing there.
This cuts off a loop of the 10 k trail, or if the 10 k trail is skied
it provides a pleasant ski down the valley as a short cut back to the
2˝ k trail.
Porcupine link. This trail
links the 10 k trail to the Porcupine trail. It covers some very wind
swept areas where snow cover may be poor and conditions are uncomfortable
in exposed areas in very high winds or blizzard conditions. It can be
skied in any direction and the couple of steeper sections can be negotiated
with traverses near the pole line.
The Porcupine trail
This trail goes from Perisher to The Porcupine Rocks and continues
on to Charlotte Pass (distance 10 km ). This trail is classified as intermediate
by the NPWS but skiers should note that skiing conditions may be difficult,
there is a 2 km uphill climb and two moderately steep downhill sections.
Parts of the trail are very exposed in bad weather, lack of complete snow
cover may make skiing difficult in some exposed areas and in common with
all trails in this area, there are no shelter huts. Skiers who lack experience
or fitness could take more than 4 hours for the one way trip.
The trail starts at the Perisher water supply dam. Access
the dam by skiing up Rock Ck from Maritz Lodge opposite the Skitube station
or following the road from the Stables to Parrawa Lodge. A steady uphill
climb leads to a saddle where the Wheatley link leads to the north to
cross the Wheatley ridge and come out opposite the Eyre ski lift at Perisher
Gap. This makes a pleasant loop back to Perisher. Continue on from the
Wheatley link for 100m and turn left off the trail to reach Porcupine
Rocks, a popular vantage point and picnic spot. From here one can return
to Perisher or continue on towards Charlotte Pass. The trail descends
rather steeply into Betts Creek, (turn north to ski the Betts link to
the Kosciuszko Road) crosses it and climbs towards a saddle and turns
north to cross into the upper reaches of Spencers Ck. [An old
pole line starts at this saddle and heads south west through some trees
towards Trapyard Ck, then follows a fairly open valley to an open
saddle. Trapyard Creek can be seen to the west but the pole line turns
right through the trees and comes out lower down in Trapyard. Ck valley.
Note that this pole line is difficult to find from the Perisher end,
poles are missing, buried in snow or hidden in trees and they do not have
orange markers. This route is not recommended in a white out unless you
are familiar with the area.] The main trail skirts Johnnies
Plain with views north to Sugarloaf and Guthries Ridge, and crosses Trapyard
and Wrights Creek and continues through the trees to arrive on a road
just above the Chalet at Charlotte Pass. The Chalet Hotel serves lunch
and hot and cold drinks. Stillwell Lodge restaurant opens every day. Charlotte
Pass Village (tel. 02 6457 5247) operates an oversnow transport back to
Perisher but check the availability and timetable before leaving Perisher.
One can ski back to Perisher on the same trail, or take
an easier route by following a pole line from the Chalet to Spencers Creek
bridge then following the Kosciuszko Road which is marked with snow poles,
back to Perisher.
The Kosciuszko Road.
A popular trip is to ski to Charlotte Pass by following the main road.
There are snow poles over the whole route. The distance is 8 km. Starting
at the Skitube station follow the road on a steady 2 km uphill to Perisher
Gap followed by a gentle downhill for 1 km and a short steep section to
Betts Creek. Skiers should keep to the south side of the road and ski
in single file in order to keep clear of Charlotte Pass Village oversnow
vehicles. After crossing Spencers Creek bear left and uphill to traverse
around Sugarloaf and follow the pole line to Charlotte Pass. Signs direct
skiers to keep to the southern side of the pole line. In good conditions
a novice skier who is fit and has some proficiency at "kick and glide"
diagonal stride would cover the distance in 1˝ to 2 hours. The trail is
exposed in windy weather and the time taken for the journey can double.
From Charlotte Pass Village it is a ˝ hour climb to Charlotte Pass and
on a clear day there is a great view of the main range peaks from Kosciuszko
to Twynam. From the Pass return to Perisher by following the main road
to Spencers Creek bridge and then following the road.
The Mt Piper Trail
Access this trail from the Perisher car park heading north down
Perisher Creek where the trail head is clearly signposted just past the
Interceptor chairlift. The pole line rises steeply towards a ridge off
Mt Piper but the steep climb can be avoided by zig zagging up to the east
of the pole line. Once you know the way it is possible to ski from the
Perisher car park on the east side of the creek and climb steadily in
one easy traverse to reach the ridge. From the ridge the trail heads in
an easterly direction through open trees with some great views to the
north to Mt Gungarten with Schlink Pass prominent. Take your camera on
this trip. The trail passes by a surprisingly large flat open area and
then descends some 60 vertical metres with some steep parts with many
trees. You can take grandpa and the kids on this one though if you zig
zag down in easy traverses until you pass a ski lift and come out on the
Smiggins/Guthega link road at the Smiggin Holes loops. You can retrace
the route to return or complete a circle with a 15 minute climb out of
Guthega, over a trail that is a skidoo track and often glazed by downhill
skiers, that leads to a point on the ridge overlooking Perisher View Motel.
Alternatively catch the shuttle bus back to Perisher.