Our pre-trip information will tell you everything you need to know!
Most of our guests travel to our location by flying into Spokane, WA, and take a shuttle or rental vehicle (preferably a 4x4 with winter tires) from the airport.
Within Canada 1-800-461-9999
Location: Between Metaline Falls, WA and Salmo, BC.
Hours: US and Canadian customs open 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 a.m. (midnight), daily
Location: Between Northport, WA and Rossland, BC.
Hours: Canadian and US customs open 24 hours a day, daily
Canadian Immigration regulations restrict anyone from entering the country who has a conviction that would be considered a criminal charge in Canada. People with DUI charges or drug convictions (anytime in recent or ancient history) have a very high probability of being denied entry into Canada. Your records in the US can be accessed by Canadian Customs & Immigration officers through cooperative agreements between the US and Canada. For those who have a record, it is recommended you pre-determine your entry status prior to arriving at the border. Snowwater Heli Skiing is not responsible, or liable, to make any compensation for guests who are denied access at the border.
All European flights arrive to major Canadian cities like Toronto, Calgary or Vancouver and from there you can where to fly to locally. From Canadian cities, you have two options:
Fly Air Canada to Castlegar airport (YCG), with a local shuttle a ride to Nelson. Rental cars are also available (Budget and Practicar). Please be warned, flights are often cancelled due to stormy weather so we recommend spending a day on the slopes at Red Mountain Resort or Whitewater Resort prior to your arrival day.
Local Shuttle www.kootenayshuttle.com
Fly Pacific Coastal Airlines to Trail, BC (YZZ), from Vancouver’s south terminal. This airport is 1 hour from our base, but it is a little more reliable than Castlegar (www.pacific-coastal.com). Book your car rental ahead and practicar will pick you up from the airport and take you to their office, where you can pick up your rental vehicle:www.practicar.ca
Castlegar is the only airport locally that allows for international private jets. Please call for details.
It is the responsibility of the guest to be on time. Please call us if you are running late (250-359-7665). Guests who miss the scheduled departure, will need a private shuttle to the lodge at a cost of $150 per person. We do not operate lodge shuttles past 6:30pm. If you are late, you will have to spend the night in Nelson and incur extra accommodation and food expenses.
We recommend flying/driving in a day early and warming up on a local ski hill if you think you might not make your trip on time. We are conveniently positioned between two great ski areas. Both Whitewater Ski Resort and Red mountain are located with an hour from our base.
Have you purchased insurance yet to protect yourself on and before this trip? Purchasing insurance for your trip is a crucial piece of the heli skiing puzzle. You have just invested in an expensive adventure and we HIGHLY recommend getting the appropriate coverage so that you are adequately reimbursed should something go awry either before or during your trip.
There are a variety of types of insurance, including trip cancellation and interruption, as well as medical evacuation insurance. You will want to be covered before and while you are on your trip. We suggest using Lifestyle Insurance ( 250-542-8577 ), but there are many to choose from. Just pick one!
Snowwater does not issue refunds due to illness or injury.
The backcountry is exciting and exhilarating, but can also be unpredictable. We strongly urge our guests to act responsibly and listen attentively to their guides and the pilot. Guests are expected to follow directions and act appropriately around the heli at all times.
Avalanches are part of skiing in the backcountry. These are a normal occurrence in the mountains as nature finds a way to stabilize the strong potential energy created during storms. Many western ski areas have avalanche control programs protecting their inbound terrain, but in an area as vast and untamed as ours, this task is virtually impossible. Our guides have years of experience in evaluating people, snow stability and assessing where it’s safe...or not. While it is our goal to take you to the best available snow and terrain each day, safety is our main priority and it may dictate where and when we ski. Please listen to and follow your guide at all times. **The use of drugs and alcohol are strictly prohibited before and during the ski day. IPods or other music listening devices are also not allowed during your ski day.
Snowwater guarantees you ski or ride every day no matter what the weather is doing. With over 15 years of snowcat road and run development under our belt, the caliber of our backup tree skiing is second to none. We are able to access signature old growth tree skiing and open bowls right from our doorstep. If the weather changes while we’re in the cat, we can easily have the heli meet us in the field, or we simply ski right to lodge and head out for some epic heli turns. It’s our failsafe way to ensure you spend your well-deserved vacation time doing what you came to do: make powder turns all day long!
After an enthusiastic day in the mountains giving it all you’ve got, there is not better way to sooth your muscles and get the most out of tour vacation by treating yourself to a massage. Our certified therapists have extensive sports therapy experience and are guaranteed to sooth the pain.
Gratuities have not been included in your trip.
Tips are a customary part of this industry in Canada, and are greatly appreciated by all.
If you feel you received exceptional service and your trip made memorable by the efforts of those who work at the lodge, please tip your guides, pilot and lodge staff.
Cash, of course, is always preferred.