Helicopter skiing is a very extreme sport. Though it has been around for a number of years, the evolution of helicopter technology has enabled the sport to become much more accessible. As thrilling as it is pleasurable, this is a ski experience like nothing you have ever imagined. Skiing or snowboarding on two feet of powder offers a very different feel than packed snow. An experience of pure freedom, unbound by chair lifts and out of bounds signs.
Heli-skiing is self-explanatory. It is, in all simplicity, down hill skiing accessed by a helicopter. Essentially, the helicopter is able to transport you to some of the best, most profound skiing destinations on the planet. Many resorts are also located on magnificent mountains, in areas that receive huge amounts of annual snowfalls. However, having unified starting points for all runs creates conditions where the snow becomes packed and hard as everyone eventually crosses each other’s trails. In the freedom of the wild, Mother Nature lets you choose your own path.
Granted, it is a dangerous endeavor, but to many, the elevated risk factor contributes significantly to the growing popularity of heli-skiing. The unpredictable, uncharted, mountain environment makes the experience more incredible, as you are truly unbound from the restrictions of society. The natural features, the rapid contours, the trees, the glistening snow; everything just screams of an inimitable thrill. This type of skiing is generally off trail, where skiers can literally carve their own path. Two feet of light dry snow overnight will cover all traces of others who have been there, giving you the taste of discovery.
Heli-skiing is not only an extreme sport or wild adventure; it is a rare experience that few will ever have. Once the helicopter takes off, you are literally in the middle of nowhere, with your group of friends (and a guide) on snow pack mountain over 30 ft. thick (or more depending on the time of the year) with only one direction to go. Floating across fresh powder is like skiing on a cloud! Some would argue this experience is heaven on earth. It is quite a mystical feeling being isolated so far away from infrastructures, engulfed with nothing but fresh powder.
For well over 5 decades, heli-skiing continues to make significant strides on the global front as accessibility and weather tracking technology allows more adventurers the ability to get out there and have an experience of a lifetime. Though some may only get to have this experience once, many find that the thrill cannot be replicated by any other endeavor. Others may have their reservations about tackling such an immense challenge, and wonder if they have the required skill set. Heli-skiing operations generally provide you with a tour guide and safety equipment, as well as the security of knowing help is always close by if needed. For the experienced skier who wants to experience ultimate freedom, heli-skiing is simply an adventure that cannot be fully described with words.