#skiwanaka Like a Local - Meet Stef Zeestraten

Stef Zeestraten has a small obsession with snowboarding – it’s the utter conviction when he talks about the mountains that gives it away. As the first snow falls you’ll find him hunting down fresh tracks at Cardrona! We ask him why Wanaka? See below for some Q&A's and check out the videos for some 'local' tips.       

How to #skiwanaka like a local?

Why Wanaka?

It's the people that choose to live here and the greatest backyard that make this place amazing in any season, but especially so when the mountains are covered in fresh powder.


What makes Wanaka different?

Wanaka is just a natural masterpiece -  with an unbeatable quality of life, leisure and  endless opportunities.


What is your ideal ski/board day in Wanaka?

My ideal day on the board would start with a very early drive up Cardrona  reaching the top at sunrise for a quick coffee before making the most of the first chairlift ride of the day and another ten more with friends before any crowds show up. Home after lunch to enjoy a calm and sunny Lake Wanaka and some time spent on the farm (Stef along with brother Tim owns Wanaka Lavender Farm)  before catching up with friends/family for some fine local food.


Tell us your favourite Wanaka winter memory?

One of them would have to be last season after a last minute decision. We went on an amazing ten run Heliski day with the greatest crew on the surrounding peaks of Mt Aspiring just because it was at our backdoor step and because it would be almost rude not to.

If you were showing someone new around Wanaka over winter, what key bit would you have to show them?

I would head as deep as possible into Mt Aspiring National park and show them how much we appreciate the scale and beauty of the natural landscape in our backyard whether it be for a drive, walk or snowboard, the mountains and valleys out there are jaw-dropping even the 100th time you visit.