The Top 10 Backcountry Ski Huts in North America

The Top 10 Backcountry Ski Huts in North America

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The Top 10 Backcountry Ski Huts in North America

10. Ridgway Hut, Colorado

Located high up in the San Juans of Colorado, the Ridgeway Hut has been a go to for Telluride, Ouray, and Silverton residents for years. Like all locations in southwestern Colorado, getting away from crowds is usually an easy deal. Add in a 6.7 mile approach to the 10,200 ft hut and suddenly gapers are put in the resort rearview.

Stats:

Elevation- 10,200 ft

Approach- 6.7 miles (1,930′ elevation gain)

Capacity- Sleeps up to 8 people

sanjuanhuts.com

9. Fowler-Hilliard Hut, Colorado

fowlerSmall

Photo Credit: huts.org

Named in honor of Ann Fowler and Ed Hilliard, who died in a tragic climbing accident on North Maroon Peak, the Fowler-Hilliard Hut is a centerpiece of the 10th Mountain Division hut system and is located in close proximity to Vail Pass. The families built the hut in their parents’ honor and now it serves as one of the best backcountry destinations in the area.

Stats:

Elevation- 11,500 ft

Approach- 5 miles (2,000′ elevation gain)

Capacity- Sleeps up to 16 people

huts.org

8. Boulder Hut, British Columbia

The Purcell mountains are home to this legendary hut as well some of the best powder in the all of North America. The hut itself is located in the shadow of Mt. Higgins and Mt. Levesque and offers extremely diverse touring options from well spaced tree skiing to full on ski mountaineering objectives. Whatever the mission, interior B.C.’s snowpack is known for its consistency. Combine that with a remote hut in the Purcell mountains and this spot is a ski-touring dream come true.

Stats:

Elevation- 6,500 ft

Approach- Helicopter Access

Capacity- Sleeps up to 12 people

boulderhutadventures.com

7. Fishhook Yurt, Idaho

Photo Credit: Sun Valley Trekking

Photo Credit: Sun Valley Trekking

Nestled against a creek, deep in the Sawtooth Mountains, the Fishhook Yurt is one of the most picturesque yurts available to the public. Not only will the setting rock your socks off, but the skiing is just as dramatic. Often accessed in the springtime so as to allow for steep couloir skiing, the Sawtooths don’t mess around but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t. Oh yeah, the hut also features a wood fired hot tub.

Stats:

Elevation- 6,800 ft

Approach- 4 miles (305′ elevation gain)

Capacity- Sleeps up to 14 people

svtrek.com

6. Bell Lake Yurt, Montana

Photo Credit: Bell L

Photo Credit: Belllakeyurt.com

Just an hour and a half from Bozeman, the Bell Lake Yurt is a classic backcountry touring experience. It’s remote, primitive, and accesses some of the best terrain in Montana. Editor of ESPN Freeskiing, Megan Michaelson calls the yurt, “The nicest yurt with the best access to awesome terrain and the easiest approach that I’ve ever been to.”

Stats:

Elevation- 8,500 ft

Approach- 2.5 miles 

Capacity- Sleeps up to 8 people

belllakeyurt.com

5. Commissary Ridge, Wyoming

Teton Backcountry Guides have operated yurts on the Wydaho side of the Tetons since 1986. Needless to say, the Tetons deliver some ridiculous backcountry touring opportunities (*especially on the west side). Among the various terrain choices, the North Bowl of Beards Mountain offers 2,000 vertical ft. of steep north facing bowl skiing, which is hard to beat.

Stats:

Elevation- 8,000 ft

Approach- 4 miles (1,200′ Elevation Gain)

Capacity- Sleeps up to 8 people

tetonbackcountryguides.com

4. Fairy Meadows, British Columbia

Deep in the Selkirk Mountains of interior British Columbia lies the Fairy Meadows hut. From the hut’s porch skiers can scope countless lines and ski mountaineering opportunities that will keep anyone coming back year after year. However, the Fairy Meadows hut is so popular you have to enter into a lottery during the spring to be eligible for a spot in the winter.

Stats:

Elevation- 6,700 ft

Approach- Helicopter

Capacity- Sleeps up to 20 people

alpineclubofcanada.ca

3. Tam McArthur Rim Huts (Owl Yurt), Oregon

The Owl Yurt is one of two huts (the other being the Raven Yurt) located in the Three Sisters volcano chain in central Oregon. The backcountry touring here is possibly the best in all of Oregon and also offers the most traditional experience for overnight ski-touring than anywhere else in the Pacific North West. Also, being high in the central Oregon mountains, the area receives lighter density snow than the rest of the state.

Stats:

Elevation- 6,000 ft (approximate)

Approach- 6 miles (1,100′ elevation gain)

Capacity- Sleeps up to 12 people

threesistersbackcountry.com

2. Pioneer Yurt, Idaho

Next door to the Sawtooths are the Pioneer mountains. Although slightly less dramatic, the Pioneer’s are home to some of the best terrain in Idaho and the yurt itself is about as classic as they come. The proprietors of the yurt, Sun Valley Trekking says the area is a “ski mountaineer’s nirvana!” This hut includes a wood fired sauna. SCORE!

Stats:

Elevation- 8,750 ft

Approach- 6.75 miles (2,134′ elevation gain)

Capacity- Sleeps up to 16 people

svtrek.com

1. Golden Alpine Holidays (Meadow Lodge), British Columbia

A two week trip up to the Meadows and Sentry Lodges with Eric Hjorleifson, Zack Giffin, Kye Peterson, Adraon Buck along with the Sweetgrass Productions Crew

A feature location in countless ski flicks, Golden Alpine Holiday’s Meadow Lodge is an icon for backcountry ski touring. The hut is as picturesque as it is luxurious. Ski, sauna, sleep are the actions of the day and it doesn’t get much better than that. Just ask Hoji what he thinks…

Stats:

Elevation- 7,200 ft

Approach- Helicopter

Capacity- Sleeps up to 15 people

goldenalpineholidays.com

 

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