Having grown up in Wanaka, since moving there in 1990, Will is about as local as they come in this area and is one of the nicest guys.
As a kid sport always played a huge roll in his up-bringing - with both parents as qualified Physical Education teachers it was only natural that he would follow his career path towards sport and the outdoors.
His friends know him as a 'sports nut' who's obsessed with everything sport-related from rugby, golf, surfing, cricket, basketball and snow sports. You name it and chances are that Will plays it or follows it!
A keen skier at a young age, however snowboarding quickly took preference and became his passion. Weekends were spent up at Cardrona Resort learning the 'ins and outs' and competing locally. By the time he left school he was getting paid to snowboard and travel the world full-time.
After countless contest results, international exposure and travelling to foreign countries, he decided to focus on filming video parts in the back-country and consequently spent the majority of his time in Japan and the United States.
As a result of spending a lot of time in Asia, Will became reasonably proficient In the Japanese language and considers it a great asset moving forward with the business.
Also a keen and avid golfer, from a young age Will spent his childhood living just a few doors away from the Wanaka Golf Club. It's no surprise then that it became a second home for him. Although he has lived a mainly winter lifestyle he always returned home to Wanaka and golf (after family) was usually at the top of his priority list - He plays off a respectable 8 handicap, has ticked off some amazing international golf clubs during his time overseas and knows the local Southern Lakes golf courses like a true host.
Will has a very unique snowboard style and approach towards the mountain, he feels at home in the snow and has an amazingly creative mind when it comes to riding his snowboard. He takes great pride in offering guests a different insight and new perspective in looking at the mountains.
Will applies a similar approach and philosophy to his golf. He's laid-back but determined and knowledgeable yet humble in his attitude - with a wealth of experience golfing in his back yard he's the ultimate guide for any golfer wanting a refreshing and down-to-earth golfing experience .
After 38 consecutive back-to-back winters, a professional snowboard career that's expanded almost 20 years, and a young family with whom he loves spending time, he's in the right place and space to share his incredible knowledge of the area and to give back to the industry that's given him and his family their everything.
He looks forward to welcoming you to his special part of the world and to giving you the best experience you'll never forget!
Abby Jackways has called Wanaka home for the last 16 years and lives for the mountains and outdoors. She enjoys everything this special place has to offer.
Originally from the Coromandel Peninsula, and with a rural upbringing, where she grew up on the family farm which also runs a commercial horse riding business, Abby's been around people and animals her whole life after working in the horse trekking business. This business was also where Abby developed her great 'people strengths.'
Abby also rode horses competitively during her teenage years and, like most New Zealanders, played a variety of sports. Growing up with older brothers, who were passionate skateboarders, it didn't take long before Abby had progressed her own skills to compete against them, and even saw her crowned as the skate national champion for two consecutive years. Through her love of skateboarding and spending time in the snow, snowboarding was a natural progression and it soon became her number one passion. Moving south for better snow conditions opened up a whole new world.
Abby also went on to become a professional snowboarder and travelled the world extensively for 10 years. Spending time in Europe, Japan, Scandinavia, Canada and the US, Abby endorsed international brands and pioneered a path of progression that many Kiwi snowboarders have since followed. She still serves as an inspirational role model for young women in particular.
Abby is a 3 time World Heli Challenge champion, has competed on the World Snowboard Tour, accomplished international exposure including featuring on magazine covers, numerous other acclaimed publications and in many advertising and marketing campaigns.
Combined with a 'hands on, get it done' attitude Abby's never one to shy away from giving anything and everything a go. Her determination matched with her natural ability have paved an incredible path of success and achievements that continue to grow an expand with business .
Will and Abby got married in 2013 and not only is Abby an essential part of Explore Wanaka as mentor/motivator and innovator, but she's also an incredible mother to her two children and makes quality time with them a priority. Additionally she's extremely well respected amongst her friends/family and the community alike.
Abby is amazinly fun to be around and extremely passionate day to day , she's takes great pride in giving people an experience they wont forget , she is very attentive and loves helping people accomplish their dreams.