New Zealand Mountan Safety Council


Welcome to the 2017 Southern Hemisphere Alpine Conference (SHAC)

Brought to you by the NZ Mountain Safety Council

Formerly the Southern Hemisphere Avalanche Conference, the 2017 conference broadens its focus to alpine snow environments, and brings together New Zealand and international delegates who are interested in helping to shape the future of alpine snow safety. Delegates will include snow safety professionals, guides, search and rescue specialists, outdoor educators, researchers, weather forecasters, commercial operators, land managers, mountain enthusiasts and more...

The SHAC has three key objectives

1. To provide a platform for people interested in alpine snow environments to share ideas, network and enhance their knowledge and practical skills

2. To build strong partnerships that connect our alpine community together, and

3. To generate opportunities to develop future strategies and collaborations that help more people stay safe in the outdoors.



A diverse programme will engage delegates in a mix of interactive sessions: plenary/keynotes and presentations to share ideas and thought leadership, practical workshops to develop new skills and enhanced capabilities, and panel discussions that provide a platform for exchange and debate. Strands will include:

•          Weather and Climate
•          Risk Management and Public Safety
•          Teaching, Learning and Alpine Culture
•          Decision-Making
•          Science and Research
•          International Trends and Directions

People interested in presenting or facilitating a session at the conference are invited to contact Laura Adams, the SHAC Convener.

Current Sponsors


Skills Active Aotearoa  is the industry training organisation for the sport, recreation, exercise, outdoor recreation and snowsport industries. We are mandated by the New Zealand government to develop world-class, nationally-recognised qualifications on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework, and support organisations to qualify staff.

Skills Active creates on-job training solutions that meet current and future workforce needs for the sport and recreation industries, and helps organisations to plan for the development of a highly-qualified and fit-for-purpose workforce.

For New Zealanders, keeping fit, competing with peers, having fun and enjoying the outdoors are national pastimes. Our industries exist to enable these activities, support and teach people taking part in active recreation, guide them as they explore our beautiful environment, and keep them safe as they do so. We are always striving to raise the profile of the fantastic careers offered in sport and recreation, and to champion career progression within our industries.


DOC Logo 

Department of Conservation - The Kiwi way of life is inseparable from our nature. The natural places we enjoy for holidays and recreation are the backdrop to our lives and a central part of what attracts millions of visitors to New Zealand each year. DOC manages an extensive network of huts, tracks and campsites that spans the length and breadth of the country. We work to ensure people can access meaningful, valued and safe outdoor experiences that enrich their lives. 

Partnering across the safety sector to deliver this conference is important; as more people venture into the outdoors we think there is incredible value in working together to ensure every person has the tools and knowledge to have safe and enjoyable experiences. We will have more success in achieving that together, using the likes of this conference as a platform.



New Zealand Search and Rescue (NZSAR) Council - has a mandate from the New Zealand government to provide strategic leadership to the New Zealand Search and Rescue Sector. We help improve the overall co-ordination, cohesion, capability and leadership of search and rescue by working alongside the key organisations and individuals providing search and rescue services throughout New Zealand.




MetService - is New Zealand’s coolest little weather company. From the storm warning that safeguards a fishing fleet, to forecasts that help power companies meet demand, to a commuter’s decision to wear a coat, our work impacts on almost every aspect of daily life. MetService is New Zealand’s weather authority, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.  MetService aims to support safety of life and property, and create wealth from weather, for New Zealanders, shareholders and customers. 


Alpine Exhibition

A wide range of exhibitors will be showcasing the latest alpine products and technologies, innovations and best practices and commercial services, including offering a series of mini-workshops throughout the conference.


Convener - Laura Adams:


These will open early 2017, please follow our Alpine Facebook page  as we announce further details. 


Avalanche Forecast Regions:
Mountain Safety Council managed websites
Mountainf Safety Council websiteAdventure Smart websiteNew Zealand Avalanche Center