The brief: The New Zealand Mountain Safety Council (MSC) is a national organisation with a mandate to encourage safe participation in land-based outdoor activities, including tramping, hunting and alpine pursuits. They required a website to communicate vital information about safety in the outdoors, as well as act as a corporate website to help engage the public and stakeholders with their brand.

The Brief

The Sense of Adventure

Mountain Safety Council needed to convey the sense of adventure and freedom that New Zealander's love about the outdoors - so we used their library of stunning images to inject as much colour and vibrancy into their website as possible. Large images have been optimised for the web and include dynamic re-sizing for responsive optimisation, and through-out the site these images are used in headers to reflect their relevant content sections. The end result is a striking website which engages the user as they find the information they're after.

Built for Flexiblity

The Mountain Safety Council (MSC) had an extensive archive of information, with pages and documents ranging across many different topics - including hunting, tramping, cycling, alpine activities, and mountaineering. We worked closely with MSC to ensure that while a lot of their content was yet to be finalised and ready for the web, that we built a number of flexible templates to accommodate their content. Since the launch of their website, MSC have experienced a very positive response from their users who are finding it much easier to find their way around the website.

MSC Devices

MSC resources sm

Intelligent Documents

Included in the MSC website is a dynamic document module which will automatically display PDFs or Word Documents with a uniform style including an icon and file size of the file to the user. It allowed MSC to quickly and efficiently add files to their growing library using the SilverStripe content management system, and the filter search functionality developed by Somar allowed users to easily locate relevant information.

Currently MSC have hundreds of annual reports, safety guides, links, and videos on their website, but this file management system works perfectly for their needs, without overwhelming the end user. Uploaded files can also be tagged with multiple category tags, to allow for single files to appear in multiple areas.

Overcoming Challenges

Every project has issues and roadblocks. Somar roll with the punches and learn from everything we do:


An Evolving Brand

When Somar engaged with MSC, there was a lot of uncertainty over their brand and so we helped them evolve it in a digital space and create web guidelines to accompany their print collateral. 


The MSC website has a new feature which is yet to go live (scheduled for Q1 2018), and for this we needed to integrate with the Department of Conservation API to pull through up-to-date information that alerts users about current safety notices.