Heli skiing. Just saying those words out loud sends a buzz through every skier and snowboarder on the planet.
The ability to access remote, powder-filled mountains with the agility of a helicopter is downright sexy.
Many heli skiing enthusiasts think you have to wait until February for optimal conditions, but at Northern Escape Heli (NEH), December/January is plenty late enough.
We are currently a little more than halfway through our trip at Northern Escape, and let me assure you- the snow is fricken awesome.
NEH set me up on the Blizzard Spur (147/127/136).
They seem to float effortlessly across all types of snow, and 6-12 inches of fresh ends up skiing like 20. I’ve particularly enjoyed letting them run at high speeds in the alpine bowls.
^Blizzard Spur with the Heli down below
The majority of our runs have been around 1,500 vertical feet. We typically start with a steep pitch in the high alpine and then finish with a tight and technical tree run.
I honestly can’t imagine any skier, even those seasoned in heli outings, not being absolutely thrilled with the quality of the snow.
^NEH’s guides make the most out of flat light and fog.
This is my first heli experience, so I’m definitely not an expert on the matter, but it seems the veteran heli-skiers on the trip have been beyond satisfied with the quality and quantity of available terrain.
The good folks working as guides and operators are constantly assessing, reassessing, and making decisions on the fly (literally).
They’re driven to deliver, and while the weather is always a challenge in the mountains, they’re the perfect group of talented professionals to maximize the experience on any given day.
That’s all you can really ask for when you go heli skiing, right?
^Lead guide Gavin Enns and guide Chris Girard assessing conditions early in the morning.
It might be intimidating to book a heli skiing trip in late December/early January, but I can personally vouch for the quality of the snow.
It snows all the damn time here. It might be raining in Vancouver, or even in nearby Terrace, but I can assure you that the snow is stacking up in the dozens of high alpine bowls that NEH has unlimited access to.
If skiing 8-15 laps per day of untouched powder in the stunning Coast Mountains of British Columbia over Near Years sounds pleasant, then you’re looking at the right place my friend.
Look no further than Northern Escape!
P.S.: The food is delicious. You might gain 10 pounds if the guides didn’t work your ass off for 8 hours a day.
^Northern Escape Heli’s Mountain Lodge (built in 2019)
We’ll have quite a bit of content coming out about our trip to Northern Escape, so stay tuned!