What Do Our Helicopters Do In The Summer?

December 12, 2017

Queenstown  and  Wanaka  are abundant in  adventure activities  during the Summer months.

Queenstown and Wanaka are abundant in adventure activities during the Summer months.

Southern Lakes Heliski gets a break in the Summer but our helicopters don’t.  They get to keep exploring new terrain, specialising in scenic flights, agricultural, commercial and private charters.

With New Zealand being one of the top countries to visit in the world due to its beauty, it makes sense to take a scenic helicopter flight. Some of the amazing spots our helicopters can take you to is Milford Sound, remote West Coast beaches, and to the top of Glaciers. They also work with other tourism operations such as heli-hiking and heli-biking, helping people to get their outdoor fix. If romance is in the air, Queenstown and Wanaka are very popular for Weddings and our skilled knowledgeable pilots know all the best spots to go to get photographs of your ultimate day.

Weddings are popular business in the region, especially with views like this and a helicopter to access them. Photo:  Mickey Ross

Weddings are popular business in the region, especially with views like this and a helicopter to access them. Photo: Mickey Ross

Alpine helicopters are also an integral part of the local community working in construction, mustering, wildlife management, film work and conservation projects. Our helicopters get no rest and even when its time to relax in the hangar they are still on duty for any search and rescue operations. It’s not a bad life really when you get to see what they see through the eyes and photos of the people they carry to these remote and wonderful destinations.

The partnership between Alpine Helicopters (owned by the famous Wallis family) and Southern Lakes Heliskiwas created a couple of years ago over a beer and a venison burger. It was decided that the combination of the two companies would make the ultimate team, and so far it’s been a win-win situation. SLHS now has the use of the best helicopters in the region and Alpine helicopters are now able to keep their rotors moving all year around.

Minaret Station Alpine Lodge – A stunning place to visit Summer or Winter.

Minaret Station Alpine Lodge – A stunning place to visit Summer or Winter.

The Wallis family is very well known in the region, with Sir Tim Wallis (Hurricane Tim) having pioneered live deer capture from helicopters which became a significant industry in New Zealand. He also was the founder of the famous Warbirds Over Wanaka show and was one of the first people to pioneer backcountry access and heli-skiing in New Zealand. He set up Alpine Helicopters in 1972 and has grown his fleet to 5 well-maintained helicopters plus a newly acquired Airbus H120B. Helicopters were in Tim’s blood so it made sense to pass on his passion and businesses to his four boys, who now manage tourism operations, Minaret Station Alpine Lodge, and Alpine helicopters, out of their 50,000-acre high country farm “Minaret Station”. The Wallis boys aim is to deliver memorable experiences and that they do taking people to remote stunning destinations which not many people ever get to access without the help of a chopper.

Alpine Helicopters newly acquired Airbus H120B which is designed for comfort and has larger windows for better viewing.

Alpine Helicopters newly acquired Airbus H120B which is designed for comfort and has larger windows for better viewing.

Everyone who works under the umbrella of the Wallis family (Alpine Group) is chosen for a reason, whether it’s their intimate knowledge of the region or amazing customer service skills. Anyone who chooses to experience the activities on offer will see that employees are extremely passionate about their jobs, have an extensive local knowledge and will give you an experience that will take you to an untracked world and leave you with memories.