Sure, [R493R, Whistler Blackcomb] boasts two mountains and more than 8,000 acres to explore. But tack on a day of heli-skiing, and the acreage possibilities soar through the roof.
Whistler Heli-Skiing’s tenure covers 432,000 acres of alpine bowls, glaciers and sub-alpine glades. Of course, you can’t ski all of that in one day, but you can sample a taste of its 475 runs.
Whistler Heli-Skiing's terrain includes 173 glaciers. Photo by Yusaku Tanaka.
Trips are for three, four or six runs, with groups separated by ability level. Each run consists of 400 to 1,500 vertical meters of descent. If conditions permit, guides aim to get groups onto some of the 173 alpine glaciers accessible via helicopter.
Trips include lunch on the hill. At the end of the day, the Bearfoot Bistro hosts an après video party where you can relive turns captured on camera.
Worried about whether you can ski or ride well enough to keep up on a heli trip? Whistler Blackcomb is offering a Learn to Heli Ski program this year. Private instructors from the Whistler Blackcomb Snow School teach full or half day lessons that are designed to prepare skiers or riders for heli trips.
A skier sinks into powder on a Whistler Heli-Skiing trip. Photo by Yusaku Tanaka.
Heli-skiing at Whistler launched its season in early December. Trips run daily, conditions permitting, through April 22. If weather precludes flying, you can still hop the Whistler Blackcomb lifts.
Trips with Whistler Heli-skiing cost $815-1,150 per day. Reservations can be made by calling 888- HELISKI (435-4754) or click http://www.whistlerheliskiing.com" target="_blank">here.
Check out a preview of what Whistler Heli-Skiing holds for this winter, courtesy of Whistler Blackcomb and Vimeo: