29January 2021

Why you’re so right

The moment Jeff knew he was going to be a heli-ski guide looked like this:

Fifteen years old, shivering in a skin-tight spandex one-piece, side-slipping down a race course, pushing freshly fallen snow out of the way so they could get to the icy, hard surface underneath.

Mid-power-plow, he watched a helicopter fly overhead. It was Rudi, taking a group of skiers to feast on all that freshly fallen snow, nothing but lines of powder, with NO hardpack underneath to be found.

“Why am I doing this?” was the thought that filled his mind.

(The answer, at the time, was that he loved racing, plus he was too young to start any of the guide training courses.)

But. Sometimes a single path gets lit in your mind, and you can instantly see what direction you’re headed.

What was obvious to him, in that moment, was that heli-skiing offered the purest expression of what every skier or rider dreams of.

And while I’d like to think you’re reading this simply because you enjoy my reflections on big mountain (mis)adventure, I know you’re here because one day, you want to go heli-skiing.

Or, perhaps just as likely, you want to go AGAIN.

And if you’re like Jeff, and you know there’s nothing like it, I just wanted to tell you, you’re so right

Here’s why:


It goes fast, it goes far, A helicopter is a powerful and nimble tool to get into mountainous terrain, and lots of it. With millions of acres at your disposal, one heli drop after the other puts you in precisely the perfect sot to score endless lines of…

Untouched powder.

Because all that pristine, empty backcountry is exactly that. Pristine. Empty. And getting regularly covered in new layers of fresh snow.

We’re lucky in the Purcells to be the epicentre of dry, champagne powder, so 99% of the time, all we encounter is weightless, blower, died-and-went-to-heaven perfect pow.

And you definitely don’t have to stress about getting the first lift, or else watching it all get tracked out, because you share it with…

Hardly anyone.

Heli-skiing in general is all about the exclusivity. Taking the usual ski resort ratio of [ small area / lots of people ] and flipping it on its head. Now you’ve got just a few people and a huge area.

It means you can enjoy a relaxed pace or charge hard, but you never have to worry about the goods getting scooped.

And with our always private program where ONE group and ONE heli get the run of the place every day, the small group big terrain experience is taken to an unparalleled level.

I canvassed Jeff for ideas while writing this post:

Me: “Hey, first thing that comes to mind, why is heli-skiing a skier’s dream come true?”

Jeff, coffee cup in hand, looking like I’ve asked him why good food tastes good: “Well, don’t you want to ski endless laps of perfect powder without any lineups?”

Yes. I do. We all do.

Every skier or rider’s dream day isn’t complicated. It’s exceptional.

Purcell was built on the drive to be just that. Exceptional and uncomplicated. We’re also a small team of friends who want to go ski untouched pow all day long.

If you’re keen to have simply the best experience next winter, get in touch.



Thinking ‘yeah, sure, but is it really worth it?’ I get it. Read this.






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