We skied in 24 days in British Columbia, Canada, in January-February 2017 and hit the weather just right with cold temperatures and three snow cycles and steady snow through the period. It resulted in nice cold deep powder.
We met up with our friends MoonVapour and Dream Catcher and stayed at their cool backcountry off grid place near Mt Baldy, Sandpoint Idaho. We snow machined up the roads and climbed up under sunny blue skies in cold weather to ski some nice cold powder and open fields, and cold shaded tree run called, “Dark Side of the Moon”. It was cold and deep back there. They have a wood fired hot tub next to a creek open to the stars. It felt really good. We jammed and played music.
BC is a great place being the most uncrowded country in the world with only 4 persons per square kilometer. The roads were empty and it was easy to find places to stay. The Canadian dollar was at $.75 so everything was a great deal. The Canadians are mellow and friendly. People say hi just walking down the street! When you walk into a restaurant, some diners greet you and say, “Good Morning”!
We headed up to Nelson next and skied at Ymir Lodge ymirbackcountrylodge.com above Nelson. You heli in about 10 minutes and get out at treeline and really nice terrain. We met some folks from Anchorage Alaska that we had met several years before out on the Denali Glaciers and had a nice connection. Brian, the hut caretaker, is a voluble, friendly hardworking Canadian from Jasper and we struck up a friendship with him Trevor, who owns the lodge, recalled some of our adventures getting to Ymir Yurts years ago when the snowcat fell off the road and we had to dig it out. There had been a big snow event and the avalanche danger was high, so everyone dialed it back. The next day was cold and clear, and the snow settled nicely and great snow was everywhere.
Unfortunately the next morning, the Alaskans were due to fly out and wanted to get a last morning run, but the temperature had gone up and the avy situation had gone bad. Three of them got caught in a big avalanche and one girl was killed. It was a traumatic and emotional hit for everyone involved and for all at the lodge. We helped with the rescue and it had a huge impact on us.
Then we headed to Nakusp and skied with Rod, friends of Moon Vapour and Dream Catcher. He lives in the woods and takes skiers out on snow machines and tours in some nice terrain. Its a long day riding, climbing and skiing. Rod is my hero, and at age 65 skins 2000 meters a day, has a thirty year old girl friend and is very strong. After two days of that we were beat and retreated to Nelson for a couple rest days. Then back to Ymir Lodge for a few more days of nice sunny pow.
After that we headed up to Rogers Pass which is awesome, huge, intimidating, and really really steep. Big lines, as big as it gets. We edged our way slowly into the lines and scored some epic powder days. Once day right after a big cold storm we skied waist deep blower powder. One of the best days ever. We stayed in a little tiny ski cabin near Blaeberry. We also stayed with our friends Andreas and Suzanne who have a beautiful new modern ski cabin with the latest European technology and design nestled next to huge dramatic mountains.
We stayed till the weather turned warm and headed down to our daughter’s baby shower in Berkeley California and met up with our son, and his new wife. Some old friends were there and the nice weekend wrapped up one of our best trips ever. Now we’re prepping to head back to Alaska and camp on the glaciers.