For more than 30 years, the lodge has provided members of the Ski Club and their families and friends with top-quality access to Mt Ruapehu – a 30-minute drive to Turoa and 45-minute journey to Whakapapa – but in recent years membership has dropped to single digits and the lodge’s future is under threat.
With the club’s dwindling membership and the recent loss of the lodge’s long-term custodian, committee members Lisa Hogan and Jessica Beckett say it has reached the point where being able to run the lodge as is, is no longer viable.
The remaining members were due to meet this month (October 5) to come up with a strategy, including ways to increase the club’s membership and appealing to any other groups, such as Police Sport, that might be interested in taking it over for use by other sporting codes.
Lisa and Jessica are also keen to spread the word about the lodge’s facilities and nearby recreation options which mean it can be used year-round.
The lodge has 11 rooms and sleeps up to 42 people. It has a fully equipped kitchen and lounge area as well as a large drying room for ski gear.
The lodge is close to National Park, mountain bike and BMX tracks, a local dinosaur museum, the highly rated National Army Museum in Waiouru and the bustling night life of Ohakune during the peak ski season.
Annual membership fees start from $25 for one person and $40 for a family.
Members who have been using the lodge for many years say it has been a great place for families and for establishing lifelong friendships through the bond of shared interests.