The jointly-owned New Zealand ski areas on Cardrona and Treble Cone have launched a campaign to encourage equal representation of women in snow sports.  

“At the end of 2020, our team took stock of gender representation in our social media content,” says Laura Hedley, General Manager of Experience for Cardrona and Treble Cone. “It quickly became clear that we were perpetuating gender stereotypes, often reducing women to ‘lifestyle’ content.”

The research revealed that Cardrona and Treble Cone social media audiences consist of nearly 45% women. Despite this, during Winter 2020, only 29% of skiing and snowboarding content featured women in any way. Posts showing women actively participating was even less, at 15% of total, and in many cases were a single shot in a longer clip featuring mostly men.

Since then, Cardrona and Treble Cone have started to tip the balance. During Winter 2021, more than 50% of their social media content featured women. In 2022 the ski areas made the bold decision to exclusively feature women in the advertising of their two biggest pre-season campaigns, the annual Earlybird season pass and multi-day pass sales. 

“This was a first in New Zealand and proved that focusing on women in sport can be incredibly powerful, both visually and in driving commercial success,” a resorts statement claims.

They have also created a short documentary, “All In”, about women’s experience in snow sports including interviews with Kiwi snow sports stars like Freeride World Tour champion Jess Hotter and Olympians Cool Wakushima and Janina Kuzma, alongside women’s health professionals.

“All In is a celebration of Kiwi women in snow sports. It highlights the challenges that many face, whilst also discussing hopes for a more equitable future in the New Zealand snow sports industry,” a statement from the resorts explains.

All In screens on Thursday, June 9 online at A premiere event at Wānaka in New Zealand will include an industry pre-viewing, athlete Q+As, and fundraising for the Cardrona Foundation.

Moving forward, Cardrona and Treble Cone say that they are committing to equitable gender representation in all marketing media, encouraging more people to find their passion in the mountains. They are also challenging other snow sports brands to join them.

“We know that this is just a good start – it’s not all that needs to be done,” says Hedley. “We’ll keep asking ourselves and others the questions that need to be asked. We’ll listen, we’ll learn, and we’ll keep making change.”

“However, this change can’t be something we do alone,” she says.

(Pictured top: Jess Hotter by Troy Tanner)