The owner of a Cromwell snow bike business says it was “a kick in the guts” to have thieves clean out all his gear from a storage container just before the start of the winter season.
Hamish Goodall started Snowmoto in 2018 with a shipping container full of gear after discovering his dream sport in Canada. He arrived at his shipping container late Thursday afternoon to find it empty, with almost $ 100,000 of gear gone that he needs to operate this winter.
“I turned up to the storage container to do a few things and just realized it was all gone,” he says. “Everything was as I had left it, but I opened the doors and was just blown away. There was just nothing left. From fully packed to nothing. “
Goodall says his first reaction was “all the profanities”.
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“I just couldn’t believe it!
“It’s a bit of a hectic start to winter.”
While he is partially insured, Goodall says that won’t be enough to cover the cost of the goods. He is offering a $ 10,000 reward for the return of all the stolen gear which includes four specialist Kawasaki bikes as well as new winter safety equipment, avalanche backpacks, helmets, goggles, boots and tools.
Goodall says the theft won’t stop him operating for his fifth season. He already has more than 100 bookings ahead of the season starting in mid-June. That’s as much business as he did for the whole of last season when he just “scraped by” due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and border closures. A good season pre-Covid was 300 to 400 bookings.
“It’s looking like it’s going to be a good one,” he says. “I’ll be able to operate still but it’s just going to be a battle to get up to speed with all the gear.”
Goodall says he has good connections with his suppliers and is confident they will be able to help.
“We will be back bigger and stronger. We’ll make it happen.
“It’s a huge hurdle we don’t really need this time of the year going into winter. It won’t affect any operations this winter, but it’s just a kick in the guts really. “
He has posted details of the theft on Instagram and Facebook, prompting more than 1000 shares and a huge amount of support.
“Hopefully the power of social media will get some of it back, and then I will just have to work super hard and make some special orders and try and get some stuff replaced but we will be back for winter,” he says.
Goodall imports the gear to build his bikes and estimates there are less than 20 of the bikes in New Zealand, and he knows all the owners.
The shipping container was in a remote location and he last visited it a couple of weeks ago. Half of his bikes di lui were at another workshop and luckily he already has some more Camso track kits on order as he planned to expand.
Goodall says the business had been his dream since living in Canada, and it was awesome to be able to share the experience with other Kiwis and tourists. He began the business with six bikes and has added to his locations di lui and expanded to overnight tours staying in huts in the mountains.