Best Heli Skiing Trips: Resorts + Heliskiing Best Short Trips

Heli Skiing Trips + Resort Skiing Trips

Heli skiing trips plus resort skiing trips is next our series on the best heli skiing trips. clients often ask us to put together the best short heli skiing trips.  This usually includes 3 or 4 days of heliskiing with minimal travel time and minimal risk.  For some, it is more about getting the best deal.   Others want to combine heli skiing trips and resort skiing.
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Also check out our previous articles:

Revelstoke’s Best Short Heli Skiing Trips

Best Short Heliskiing Trips – Coast Range

Best Short Heli-Skiing Trips – SE British Columbia

Best Short Resort + Heli Skiing Trips

Here we discuss the best short heli skiing trips combined with Resort skiing.

Travel Time / Convenience

When combining resort skiing and heli skiing, minimizing travel time can save a day on the snow.  Having said that, some prefer a day off.

Starting at a resort can help heliskiers get acclimated to the Pacific Time Zone.The is true specially for Europeans.

Short Heli Skiing Trips Cost

Another advantage to combining resort and heli-skiing trips is reducing the total cost.

Warming Up for Heli Skiing

Many clients would like to get their ski legs before jumping into a helicopter.  Combining resort and heli skiing trips is the obvious choice.
best short heli skiing trips, Bella Coola Heli Skiing Trips

Whistler / Blackcomb Resort + Heli Skiing Trips

Whistler is probably the resort most commonly used to warm up before a destination heliskiing trip.   Heliskiers connect through Vancouver on the way to all five of the Coast Range Heliskiing operators.  And Vancouver is only an hour and a half away.  For short trips including Whistler, consider Bella Coola Heliskiing, Northern Escape Heliskiing and TLH Heliskiing.

The Best Short Heli Skiing Trips – Resort + Heliski

Bella Coola Heliskiing

Combo trips with BCHS and Whistler work really well. in fact, we have many clients that do a pre- or post- Whistler trip.

There’s busses that leave from YVR every hour to Whistler, so transfers are super easy. Guests could sleep the night in Whistler, take the morning shuttle to YVR to meet the flight to Bella Coola, and be heli-skiing the longest descents in North America that afternoon.

heli skiing trips, resort Plus heliskiing

A sample 7 night combo could look like this:

Day 1) Take a shuttle from YVR up the scenic Sea to Sky Highway to Whistler. Potential to ski in the afternoon

Day 2) Ski Whistler-Blackcomb

Day 3) Ski Whistler-Blackcomb

Day 4) Take the bus from Whistler to Vancouver Airport South Terminal for mid-morning flight to Bella Coola (70 minutes). After lunch and the safety briefing, heli-ski the rest of the afternoon

Heli Skiing Trips, TLH tracks into trees on skier

Day 5) Heli-skiing the epic terrain of the Coast Range

Day 6) Heli-skiing the epic terrain of the Coast Range

Day 7) Heli-skiing the epic terrain of the Coast Range

Day 8) Spend the morning heli-skiing the way to the Airport. On arrival, the guests luggage will be waiting so that they can change clothes for the short flight back to Vancouver, arriving around 2pm. Guests can then fly home that same evening!

Therefore a 7 night trip will give people 2-2.5 days of resort skiing and 5 days of heli-skiing (2 half-days and 3 full days). Not bad!

Great Canadian Heli-Skiing makes this list as well.  Golden is home to Great Canadian Heli Skiing and Kicking Horse ‘The Jackson Hole of Canada.’  So it’s a great combination of terrain and easy travel.

  • Great Canadian Heli-Skiing will accommodate your group for as many days as you like, starting and stopping on any day.
  • All heliskiing is unlimited vertical at GCH, too.
  • 6 groups of 4 in an A-Star, so you can find a group with similar ability and aggressiveness

TLH Heli Skiing Trips

TLH Heli Skiing Tenure is just North of Whistler.   A shuttle takes guests from Whistler to Pemberton, where short hop by a chartered plane completes the flight to the lodge.    TLH is unlimited vertical, and just one group per helicopter!

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TLH / Whistler Heli Skiing 

Combo Package can include:  Unlimited Vertical Heli Skiing trips at TLH

  • 4 nights’ accommodation at Tyax Wilderness Resort & Spa
  • 3 nights’ accommodation in Whistler, BC
  • 1 night accommodation in Vancouver, BC
  • Transportation from Vancouver to Whistler, Whistler to TLH and return to Vancouver (combination of land and air)
  • 2 day lift pass for Whistler-Blackcomb Resort
  • All gourmet meals at TLH

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Northern Escape Heli-Skiing is just 20 minutes from the Terrace airport.  So getting from Whistler to the lodge is very easy and convenient.  It is possible to ski Whistler Blackcomb in the morning, and have dinner at the Northern Escape Heli Skiing lodge.

Snowwater Heli Skiing has a resort / catskiing / heli skiing trip combo that is unique.  It’s called the Kootenay Sampler.

One Resort day, 2 Catskiing days, 3 or 4 heliskiing days.

I have not done the Sampler, but I have heliskied with them, which was great.   And the lodge is a ton of fun.

snowwater-lodge-front-view, heli skiing trips


– your trip starts with a night at the Prestige Resort in Rossland
– breakfast voucher for ski hill in the morning is included
– a day pass for Red Resort ski area

DAY 2 and 3
– 3 nights accommodation at Nelson’s Lakeside Prestige Resort and Convention Centre
– 2 days snowcat at their sister company, Valhalla Powdercats, lunch and morning snacks included
– breakfast at Prestige Resort in Nelson

– breakfast at Prestige Resort in Nelson
– pass for Ainsworth Hot Springs Caves and Mineral Baths.

DAY 5, 6 and 7
– 3 or 4 days of heli skiing with Snowwater Heli Skiing

– 3 groups of 4

– all alcohol (except cellared wine and premium liquor)
– 3 nights accommodation at Snowwater Lodge
– 3 delicious meals a day for the length of your Snowwater stay
– personal safety backpack with avalanche probe, shovel and water bottle
– use of digital barryvox avalanche transceiver
– avalanche safety and transceiver training
– helicopter safety briefing
– specially selected poles and fat powder skis
– transfer to and from the lodge from the base office.

Honorable Mention Heli Skiing Trips

Last Frontier Heliskiing, for the ultimate warm up plus a full 7-day package.  3 days at Whistler, 1 in Vancouver, and 7 days heliskiing at the Bell 2 Lodge.  It looks like this:

best resort + heliski BC

Let us know if we can assist with recommendations for the best BC heli skiing trips!


Which Heliskiing Operators Offer Catskiing Backup?

Which Heliskiing Operators Offer Catskiing Backup?

Northern Escape Heli-Skiing,
Snowwater Heliskiing,
Mica Heliskiing,
Powder Mountain Heliskiing,
Chugach Powder Guides,
Black Ops Valdez


The obvious advantage is that your group heli skis and heli snowboards every day, regardless of the weather.    The is less drama surrounding the weather report in the morning.   You will be heliskiing or catskiing (or heliboarding or catboarding).   Without catskiing backup, bad weather can mean a bad day.  This especially true for shorter trips.  One down day on a three day heliskiing trip is a disaster.


Why is it a short list.  If you are an optimist, it is short because most heliski operators do not have very many ‘down days.’   We represent quite a few operators who claim as few as two down days per season!   It also requires permitting, which can be a challenge.


If you are a pessimist, it is because catskiing backup is expensive, and it is a logistical and regulatory challenge.


Northern Escape Heliskiing began offering catskiing backup in 2010-11.   Many of their guests were on three or four day trips, so it made sense.   I was there a few years ago when Northern Escape Heliskiing got 10 meters in 10 days!   It would not stop snowing heavily, and the cat saved the week.


Since that time, it has become a big competitive advantage, especially vis-a-vis the other Coast Range heliskiing operators (Last Frontier Heliskiing, Skeena Heliskiing, Bella Coola Heli Skiing and TLH Heliskiing).




Snowwater Heliskiing evolved from the sister catskiing company – Valhalla Powdercats.  Patric and Maria added terrain, lodges, heliskiing and more cats to create Snowwater Heliskiing.  Having had the pleasure of skiing with them, I can say that Snowwater integrates catskiing backup with their heliskiing as well as any heliskiing operator.   We went seamlessly between the cat and the chopper as cloud cover came and went.  It was amazing.


Snowwater also offers a Kootenay Sampler (the mountain range, not the beer..).   The Sampler includes resort, catskiing and heliskiing in one week.

snowwater heliskiing catskiing backup



Mica Heliskiing claims that they almost never use their catskiing backup.  Their location on the Western slope of the Canadian Rocky Mountains, North of Revelstoke BC, is famous for continuous light powder.   Mica Heliskiing is slightly further North than most, so it may be so.

heliboarding air mica darryn



Powder Mountain Heliskiing is the only one of the three Whistler helicopter skiing operators to offer catskiing backup.  Like Snowwater, Coast Range Heliskiing began as a catskiing operation.  The tenure is suitable for both.  But the weather in Whistler can be challenging, so catski backup makes perfect sense.

catskiing backupo



Chugach Powder Guides is a hybrid heliski and catski operator.  CPG offers heliskiing and catskiing trips from the Alyeska ski resort.

* And the heliskiing customers are able to reserve cat spaces on down days, based on space availability.


chugach powder guides catskiing backup











Black Ops Valdez offers the largest snowcat ski area permit in North America.   They have it totally dialed in, including sled skiing and great terrain around Thompson Pass.   And if you have been to Alaska, you know this is a great feature!

If you are ready to consider the best options for your 2015 heliskiing, call or email.  866-HELISKI (866-435-4754)





HELI-SKI Canada Operator Interview: Mica Heliskiing Canada, 15 Questions with

Mica Heliskiing Operator Interview –


We caught up with Darryn Schewchuck, GM of Mica Heli Ski Guides (aka Mica Heliskiing) as the summer is turning to fall in the Canadian Rockies.  He is still riding his dirt bikes, but looking forward to another great winter of light, deep snow.  It’s not about the Mica Heli Skiing price!

Here are Mica Heliski Guides 15 Questions with

1. Hey Darryn, Mica Heliskiing has been recognized in the press recently.  Tell us about that, please.

Recently we were rated “Best Heliskiing” in BC Canada by the editors and writers of SKIING Magazine in their 2011 Resort Guide. Ski Canada rated our powder “second to none” in their “best of” issue last fall, and Good Connoisseur Magazine rated Mica Heli Guides “the best once in a lifetime experience”. These recognitions are based on several factors, 2 groups of 4 per heli, max 16 guests, dry champagne powder and incredible terrain found in the BC Rockies.

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Mica Heliskiing Canada Blue Bird Day, Cold Smoke Anyone?

2. Mica Heliskiing seems to have more options than most operators. The Classic is three groups of 4. The Premium is two groups of four and two helicopters?!?

Definitely the option to ski more vertical! At MICA our standard program is called a Premium Tour – 4 groups of 4 guests serviced by 2 A-Star helicopters (2 groups of 4 per heli, similar to what is referred to as a semi-private with other operations). 30 of our 36 tours this season are Premium tours. The other 6 tours are a combination of a Private Tour (4 guests with their own private A-Star) and our Classic Tour (3 groups of 4 sharing one A-Star). Maximum capacity at MICA is 16 only guests.

Mica Heli Skiing Price Model

3. Some packages are unlimited vertical and others have extra vertical charges, right?

Correct, our December and early Jan tours are unlimited vertical (no extra vert charges) and we also offer some vertical incentives for April tours which cover most of our guests vertical. All season we guarantee 4500 meters/day. At MICA we have averaged only 1.5 no-fly days per season over the last 8 seasons, for the odd day we can’t fly we go Catskiing (Cat vert is not counted in the 4500m/day). [Nice!]
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Mountain View or Lake View?

4. How did you come up with such a cool spot for the Mica Heliski lodge?

The position of the lodge is very spectacular indeed! Our hot-tubs have one of the best views in the world. The main purpose of the lodge position was elevation. We wanted to get above the low cloud, fog and freezing rain found lower in the valley which is what hinders flight for many other operators. The other benefit is that we ski right down to the lodge at the end of the day, and can Catski right from the lodge.

5. Catskiing backup is getting more popular. How often do you use it at Mica Heliskiing?

Mica Heliskiing was the first to start using the Cat for backup four seasons ago. We had the cat from our sister operation Island Lake Catskiing for snow removal around the lodges, so we put it to good use. We typically take guests Catskiing one or two full days per year. Additionally a few times each season we will do a cat run or two in the morning, the weather will break and we go heliskiing for most of the day.

The forest directly above MICA lodge has been gladed providing excellent 2500 vertical foot tree skiing right to the lodge. So its quick and easy to rack up some pretty good vertical Catskiing at MICA. We don’t count the Catskiing vert in the package and it is very rare for a guest to not make minimum vertical on a tour at MICA.

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Two Hot Tubs with this View!

6. Mica Heliskiing even has a backup outdoor hot tub! Did you think of everything?!?

When you are a remote backcountry lodge you need to have a backup for everything. For the last eight seasons, we’ve been compiling the guest comments and work hard to improve all aspects of our program dramatically each season. We have created something very special a MICA.

7. The Monashees have been made famous by CMH Heliskiing.  I have skied the Adamants, Selkirks and Cariboos, all somewhat nearby. How would you compare your terrain?

Mica’s terrain is the western slope of the BC Rockies across the lake from the Monashees and Selkirks. We have a lot of steep tree skiing (similar to CMH Monashees) but the Rockies are visually more spectacular like the Alps. We ski a lot of trees, have the world’s best pillow lines and have big alpine terrain. Mica Heliskiing’s terrain is very diverse; we have something for every taste.

8. Mica Heliski Guests fly into Kelowna. Tell us about the trip to the lodge.

We pick up in Kelowna and drive to Revelstoke (2 hours). At the office in Revelstoke we sign the waivers and get lunch for the trip north to Mica Creek (1.5 hours). From there it’s a quick 10 minute flight up to the lodge. We also have direct flight options from Kelowna (1.5 hours) or Revelstoke directly to Mica Lodge (45 mins).

Mica Heliski Revelstoke, Best Heli Skiing in Revelstoke mica heli skiing canada, mica heliski

Mica Heli Skiing Price:  Worth it?

9. Do you have many guests stopping in Revelstoke to ski/ride for a few days to warm up for heliskiing with Mica Heliski?

Yes, we have quite a few guests who ski Revelstoke Mountain Resort (RMR) for a pre-MICA warm up. We will cover their lift tickets and usually I will ski with them to show them “the goods” at RMR. It’s a tough part of the job but someone has to do it.

10. What are the biggest challenges of operating a boutique heliskiing lodge for only 16 guests?

The biggest challenge is getting new people seats in our high season, most sell out 10 months in advance!

11. You have a lot of ‘lifers’ coming back every season, right?

Yes, the majority of guests are regulars who bring groups each year and rebook their spot for the following year upon departure.

12. Love your old tagline. Is it really “Deeper at Mica?

The majority of our guests will tell you MICA has the deepest powder they have ever skied. There are places on the coast with a deeper snowpack, but coastal snow is not the same as the interior’s cold smoke. MICA tends to be slightly cooler in temperature than the Selkirks and Monashees, which is why we have the super dry “Champagne Powder” that everyone raves about. Like Utah, but deeper!

13. Is it true Mica Heliskiing is almost booked solid for next season.

Jan 14 to April 3 is 95% sold, only a few seats left. Almost regardless of the Mica Heli Skiing price.  The good news is that Dec and early Jan are when we get some of our deepest skiing. And April is fantastic. Longer days and more sun opens up a lot of the really big alpine runs that we don’t get to in early season. Shoulder season is excellent skiing, and we have some great vertical incentives as well.

14. How will you fit in FAM trips for

I guess I will have to give you my seat…or not…we will talk. [Damn!]

15. Do you ever abbreviate your title to Director of S&M?

Yes, but only on the last weekend of the month

Thanks, Darryn. I hope I can get up there to experience Mica Heliski Guides soon.

Best Regards,
Tom Jackson
CPO (Chief Powder Officer)


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Expert Advice – Knowledge is Powder

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7 Reasons to Try a New Heli-Skiing Location Next Year

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Why Try a New Heli-Skiing Location Next Year?

In heliskiing, momentum is a good, but inertia is not. Are you going to the same heliskiing operator year after year? Take a look around. It may be time to think about a change for 2014.

You and your buddies owe it to yourselves. Don’t automatically sign up for the same week, at the same place next year when you check out. There will be plenty of dates available, and good prices. Consider your options.
We represent every operator, and our recommendations and service are free. Here are 7 reasons to consider getting out of those tracks!

1. Heli Skiing Variety.

Variety is the spice of life. Mountain ranges, snow, terrain, lodges, travel, group size, pricing, down days, catskiing backup, and more. My mom used to say, “You don’t know what you’re missing.”

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2. More Helicopter Skiing Choices.

Since we started offering reviews and recommendations 20 years ago, there has been an explosion in the number of heli-skiing options. There are dozens of choices in British Columbia, Canada alone.


3. Travel to and from your Heli Skiing Lodge.

If minimizing your travel time is important, there are some great choices. Cost and reliability of flights and roads are also important considerations.

How about reaching the lodge in time for dinner, and skiing the next morning? Or fly to Vancouver, spend the night, fly up in the morning and heliski that afternoon. Another benefit to easy access travel is that it may also increase the skiing time you have available on the last day.


4. Heli Skiing Group Size and Heli Skiing Lodge Size.

Have you tried small group heliskiing? It is very different – much faster, more comfortable and less susceptible to weak links. Some drainages cannot handle 12 tracks, let alone 24, 36 or 48.

How about sharing the chopper with one or two groups to eliminate waiting? One operator is offering ONE GROUP per helicopter and unlimited vertical! How about a lodge that holds 12 guests, instead of 40 of your closest friends?


5. Helicopter Skiing Pricing.

A week can range from $10-15K US. And you may be writing a big check on checkout for extra vertical. We have many unlimited vertical options as well as hybrid models.


6. Alaska Heli Skiing.

If you can hang in BC, you can hang in AK. And to paraphrase Warren Miller, ‘if you don’t go this year, next year you will be a year older!’ You do not want to retire from heliskiing without Alaska on your resume.

Valdez heli skiing Alaska, heli ski Alaska


7. Helicopter Skiing Flexibility.

We offer trips of any length and can start and stop on any day you choose. Warm up at a resort like Whistler, Revelstoke or Kicking Horse. Or combine heliskiing with catskiing to save you legs and your wallet.


Let me know when your group likes to go, and where. I will give you some options so that you can be the hero. I can hold dates and get you the same re-booking discounts, too.
Email or call me at 866-HELISKI.

heli-skiing special, Whistler_4_LFH

2014 Heli-Skiing Special: Whistler + Last Frontier Heliskiing Deal

Heli-skiing Special 

Last Frontier Heli-Skiing special is offering some deals for 2014.  See them summarized below, scroll down for details.
Book with and we throw in a free massage for each guest.
So you don’t forget, order by midnight tonight!


1.  Combo of 3 days at the Whistler Fairmont + 4 days Last Frontier Heliskiing.  $6550
2.  Combo of 3 days Whistler + 5 days heliskiing.  $8440
3.  Combo of 3 days Whistler + 7 days heliskiing.  $10,070
4.  Safari  3 days heliskiing at EACH LFH lodge, and 1 day heliskiing from one to the other.  $9470
I have done this trip, and it rocks!



heli-skiing special, Whistler_4_LFH