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The 5 best things about early season Heli-Skiing

  
  
  

Why is it that some of CMH Heli-Skiing's most experienced guests book early-season trips each year? They're going to throw snowballs at me for telling you this, but here's the top 5 reasons why:

early season powder galena#1 Snow Quality

While the Columbia Mountains are vast, northerly (Revelstoke sits at 51 degrees latitude), and receive immense amounts of precipitation (the snowiest mountains in Canada), they are not terribly high (Sir Sanford, the biggest peak in the Columbias is 3,519 metres or 11,545 feet) so the average winter temperatures are not as cold as you might expect.  This means early season offers the shortest days to keep the snow cold at the moderate elevations and thus (now for the important part) quite often the lightest, fluffiest snow.

#2 The Vibe

Many of the early and late season skiers are seasoned heli-skiers and snowboarders who have learned the secrets of the early season. It’s typically an easy-going but hard-ripping crew you find at CMH Lodges in December and January.

#3 The Atmosphere

Mike Welch, the area manager of CMH Galena, put it best when he described why December is his favourite month:  “The snow is bottomless. Twenty centimetres fall every night. The days are short. It’s kind of dark all day. I love the whole ambiance! We come home wet. Our gloves are soaked. Our zippers are frozen. I just love it!”

#4 The Psyche

There is no place more exciting to be as a snow rider than a CMH Lodge in the early season when that first massive storm cycle of the Heli-Ski season rolls in. The guides, staff and guests are fresh off summer fun and everyone is rip-roaring-ready for ski season.  Sure, deep powder in mountain paradise with helicopter access is dream-worthy anytime of the year, but early season in Canada is when the amp gets turned up to 11.

early season heliskiing monashees

#5 The Cost 

Last but not least; it’s a simple matter of supply and demand. There are only so many seats on the helicopter, and more skiers and snowboarders want to go Heli-Skiing in February and March.  This means you can get in on an early season CMH Heli-Skiing trip for about a third less than the cost of a peak season trip.

Photos of early season conditions in Galena and the Monashees by Topher Donahue and Fred Huser.

Comments

Beam me up, Scottie.
Posted @ Thursday, July 18, 2013 9:25 AM by Nancy Cooke
Early season. I have read also that salting is done to harden ski course. Interesting. How about gear and clothing, is it better to buy or rent? A friend recommended me www.skichute4.com.au/
Posted @ Saturday, July 20, 2013 7:49 PM by Mildred Grace
I prefer having my own gear, but then again it really depends on how you'll want to hit the slopes. If you buy all gear, and not use it that often, it will turn out to be one expensive hobby.
Posted @ Monday, July 22, 2013 12:30 PM by Bobby Parker
Comments have been closed for this article.