Evidence that getting stuck in an airport for two days can make you go stir crazy…
This is the fourth in the HELISKI.com Series on how to select the best heliskiing trip. If you are thinking about a trip this season, give me a call or email. I’m happy to send the best available trips based on your criteria.
Criteria #4: Travel for Heliskiing / Heliboarding
Best Heli-Skiing: Travel
Total travel time and hassle are important criteria that are often overlooked when searching for the best heliskiing experience. Travel itineraries can be an episode of planes, trains, and automobiles. Some of the oldest heliski operators require bus rides of eight hours on both ends of the trip! This is an ironic contrast to the fast, luxurious, convenient service offered during the heliskiing. It may not sit well with clients who can afford to heliski.
It is a good idea to get the travel itineraries for everyone in the group before you book. Getting to and from a heliskiing destination can range from straight forward to very challenging. Some places are easy to reach, with frequent ‘commuter’ flights. Book these ASAP. The good flights often sell out, and the cheap seats sell out first. Others charter flights, require lengthy bus rides and are susceptible to weather delays. Some require renting a car or taking a third party shuttle. Others are quick and easy. Most have vans or buses for the last leg of the journey.
The primary connecting airports for heliskiing access are Vancouver, Calgary, Anchorage and Seattle, in that order. Destination airports include Terrace, Smithers, PrinceGeorge, Kelowna, Cranbrook, Kamloops, and Valdez.
Many itineraries require a night stay before or after the trip, some both.Some operators include this in the price, others do not.
Convenient travel results in more heliskiing for a given trip length. Some easy-to-reach locations allow West Coast heliskiers to fly up in the morning and ski that afternoon. It may also be possible to ski the morning of the last day and fly home that afternoon. This allows three days of heliskiing in a total of four days.
Trip insurance is a good idea. It covers change of plans or travel problems. We strongly recommend trip cancellation/disruption insurance. It is an add-on to the package price when guests make their final payment. This ranges from $200-$300, depending on the date of the tour, and the age of the participant. We partnered with Lifestyle Financial to offer trip insurance to HELISKI.com clients.