Pros: It's wide long bowls are bigger than probably most Australian slopes.
Cons: Not as close to international airports such as Christchurch/Mt Hutt, or Queenstown.
Auckland is about 12 hours flight from Los Angeles. Ruapehu is about 4 hours drive from Auckland but there's so much to see and do on the way, allow a few days to take in the sights. NZ is the "world in your pocket: the north is "Tahiti" and parts are like Scotland (including Architecture) and the south end is like the Norwegian fjords. If you've seen Lord of the Rings, you've seen parts of the Sth Island. Anyway, back to sking. Recommended stays are the Chateau and the Skotel/Motel at "Whakapapa", just a half mile or so from the main chairlift served by a shuttle). It's close, convenient and very sociable. The mountain is friendly: you'll see the mid mountain...(read more)