Mar 20, 2012242 Posts
So just back from heliskiing trip to Canada, Gothics Lodge with CMH. Unfortunately premature end to season for me, ACL gone, so sitting at home in Chamonix watching others head off to enjoy the fresh. Have to say definitely something that would do again.
Firstly amazing variety of people in lodge. From super rich who had private helicopter for week to normal people (like myself) who have saved, sold, borrowed to scrape money together for experience. 10 or so nationalities, 1 common goal (kick some ass), 1 common passion made for fantastic atmosphere. People were all good skiers but no need movie level. End of day same as anywhere, people are just there to have fun. So when your all chopping through snow to find a ski (including guides), at least you know who is buying the first pitcher that night.
Weather was warm with rain at 1000m (I actually would recommend Feb if were to do again). Snow at skiing level was deep and pretty light (we would not complain in Europe). Unfortunately there was a weak layer around 1m into pack which kept us in the trees and with limited vertical per run (500-700m, the great North American diss-advantage). Still nobodies legs were complaining about this.
As for the skiing, well I can confirm in terms of tree skiing Europe just cannot compete. Steep (needs to be because of snow depth), perfect spacing that allows you to rip whilst still requiring total focus. Completely different to the combat skiing you often get if you ski top to bottom of something in Europe. Truly awesome.
My recommendation for avoiding knee injuries, chose an appropriate place to stop. As much as people will sympathize, your pride will be dented being lifted off a slope after 2mph incident. Still despite missing 2 weeks skiing now and Mt Blanc in May no better motivation for getting into shape for next year.
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