Skeena Cat Skiing acknowledges and gives thanks to the Gitxsan Nation for allowing us to operate on their unceded traditional territories. We recognize and honour the Gitxsan peoples’ land rights and title, and are appreciative to all those fighting to protect the land, resources, and environment.
Skeena’s ski tenure is located 80km directly north of Smithers, BC, and approximately 200km from the Alaskan border. The tenured area is over 30,000 hectares – one of the largest in BC! This area has long been known by local loggers and powderhounds as a crazy snow belt. It is here where the warm, moist Pacific air collides with the cold, dry air from the interior creating huge dumps of perfect powder snow. The local mountains further enhance the accumulation. If it’s snowing anywhere in BC, it’s most likely snowing at Skeena Cat Skiing!
And all of this is accessible in under 2 hours from Vancouver! No matter where you live, you can fly via Vancouver, and then take a short 1.5 hour flight to Smithers, BC. From the Smithers airport guests will then hop directly on a helicopter, and arrive at the high elevation Skeena basecamp in 30 minutes! For this reason, flying is the preferred mode of transportation for most of Skeena’s guests.
.Skeena co-owner Nick Holmes-Smith and wife Ali also own Mustang Powder Cat Skiing, and Nick recommends Skeena for its accessibility (among other reasons!): “I can honestly say that it is much quicker and easier to go to Skeena than Mustang, or most other cat and heli operations in Southern BC”.
If you are flying to Skeena, make sure to account for weather delays that may result in a missed connection. To allow a buffer in your timeline, it is recommended expand your Northern BC ski holiday, and plan one or two days to experience Hudson Bay Mountain in Smithers, BC, to get warmed up prior to the cat skiing trip.
Contact us for inquiries on ski holiday packages with Skeena and Hudson Bay Mountain.
Skeena Cat Skiing has one of the largest and most skiable tenures providing endless terrain to explore! From open alpine bowls to naturally gladed treed runs, and everything in between, the following stats outline what we have to offer.
Our terrain is more than double the size of other “big” cat ski operations in BC. We have 50 runs now, and we have only scratched the surface. This year we will double the size of our terrain, and we will continue to expand every year in the future. Endless wide open bowls to explore, fresh tracks every time, with the signature fluffy powder of the north. The experience and access we will be able to provide will be simply unbeatable.
· Coordinates: 55°29’00.0″N 127°16’00.0″W
· Highest Elevation: 1,800 meters (5,900 feet)
· Run Lengths: 400 meters to 1,100 meters (1,300 feet to 3,600 feet)
· Average Daily Runs: 10 to 15
· Average Daily Vertical: 10,000 feet to 15,000 feet (3,000 meters to 4,600 meters)
A ski holiday at Skeena will involve ski runs in wide-open alpine, and terrain below the tree-line. The treed terrain is necessary for the cloudy and snowy days, as the trees create the visibility needed in a white-out. On clear days, we are up in the big alpine bowls and wide open meadows, with unbeatable views. This terrain and snow is where Skeena really stands out as a truly unique experience.
To check out photos of our alpine terrain, check out our Gallery.
BEST CHANCE FOR FIRST DESCENTS
Your chances of getting first lines and first descents at Skeena, are the best that BC has to offer. Each season Skeena has developed new runs and now has between 40 and 50 runs, with more being added for this season.
Being located further north than the majority of cat and heli ski destinations in BC means that the tree-line at Skeena is at a much lower elevation. With the planned expansion of our skiable area this winter (2021), we are opening up the north portion of Gail Creek zone, which will result in tons of new alpine runs added.
This winter, for the 2021/22 season, we will nearly DOUBLE THE SIZE of the skiable terrain!
Skeena Cat Skiing basecamp is positioned at approximately 1,200 meters, halfway up the Gail Ridge ski area. The trees and land formations provide sufficient shelter for the camp, and the nearby glacial stream provides the camp with water. The heartbeat of basecamp is the power generator which supplies electricity to the entire camp.
Our basecamp consists of seven tents that are 12’ x 12’, each with two single beds; one 24’ x 32’ common tent; and the shower house.
The common tent contains the kitchen, dining and lounging areas. The woodburning stove provides the heat as well as a cozy atmosphere. A cold air boot dryer is also located in the common tent.
The heated bedroom tents each have two single beds with comfortable mattresses, warm bedding, a fluffy pillow, coat rack, night table, and an electrical outlet.
The shower house has two shower stalls and two sinks with the water being heated by an on demand system. We supply towels, organic shampoo, conditioner and soap.
All of our meals are prepared on site from scratch by our talented chef, using organic ingredients, locally grown meat, and wild seafood. The breakfast buffet includes homemade apple and cinnamon oat porridge, yogurt, granola, and fruit followed by a plated hot breakfast. Lunches are made fresh every morning. We do not have a scheduled stop for lunch on ski days, so guests may help themselves whenever they are hungry. Upon returning to basecamp after your day of skiing, hors d’oeuvres are served in the common tent. Around 7pm, a three-course plated dinner is served, featuring soup or salad, an entre and dessert. Bar snacks are available during the evening.
Non-alcoholic beverages are included, but alcohol is also available for an additional fee. Our bar features a selection of BC wine and beer.
BOOK YOUR EPIC BACKCOUNTRY ADVENTURE NOW!
Our season runs late December to early April. CLICK HERE to check availability for the upcoming season, or click below if you’re ready to book now! We look forward to hosting you!