British Columbia, Canada
Just well of the Canadian Rockies lie waves of mountains: The Cariboo, Bugaboo, Monashee, Selkirk, Galina, and Purcell ranges are unknown to many but famous to fans of high-mountain hiking and powder skiing. These remote peaks are beyond the reach of roads and ski lifts, but getting to the mountaintop is possible – and – exhilarating – with CMH Heli-Skiing and Summer Adventures. CMH ferries skiers and outdoor enthusiasts abroad its fleet of helicopter to any of its 12 modern and very comfortable backcountry lodges in the heights of south-eastern British Columbia. Each accommodates only 40- some guest at a time, assuring exclusive access to a wilderness area half the size of Switzerland – all without a chairlift in slight.
High-country skiing requires intermediate to advanced skills, but the rewards are unmatched. Over the course of one mindboggling power-filled week helicopters set skiers down for 8 to 15 different runs per day, all on snow uncrossed by another human’s tracks. Back at the lodge, skiers can expect mountain-man breakfast and epicurean dinners, with soothing massages for slope-weary limbs.
As soon as the snows melt, heli-tourists can pursue summer hiking and trekking in these same unbelievable mountains. The high country is transformed into a primeval world of alpine wildflowers and monumental views of dozens of snowcapped mile-high peaks. Two of the lodges remain open, enticing adventures to remote and rarely visited backcountry for hiking, mountaineering, and climbing. Some heli-hiking ambles are gentle enough to be suitable for multigeneration family groups, but others require some technical climbing skills and mountaineering training, which guides can provide.