Frequently Asked Questions
What type of skier should I be?
Guests must be at minimum strong intermediate skiers capable of handling deep powder snow in the backcountry. We ski open bowls and glades as well as steep tree runs. When stability allows we ski steep alpine couloirs and more technical lines. Good conditioning is important. We do our best to accommodate guest needs but ask that guests arrive fit, healthy and ready to make the most of the adventure. Rest days are encouraged when needed! Powder or all mountain skis are best and make it much easier to negotiate backcountry conditions.
What about SPLitboarders, snowboarders and telemark skiers?
We don’t discriminate! We welcome all types of skiers and splitboarders. Splitboards or approach skis are a necessity for snowboarders, rather than snowshoes. Snowshoes are available for guest use to explore around the lodge on a day off from ski touring, but they will be restricted to certain areas and are not acceptable for touring. Splitboarders and telemark skiers are encouraged to bring a repair kit specific to each setup. Our guides carry enough to return guests back to the lodge in case of a equipment failure, but gear is so specialized now that guests should carry a little kit to fix any issues that arise with personal gear.
How many runs do we ski in a day? How much vertical can I expect?
Group ability and interest will dictate how much each group is able to ski. Our terrain offers a wide variety of objectives including long alpine runs of 1500-2500’ or 1000-1500’ treed runs. We try to guide to the median skier in the group. If we have a significant difference in abilities, we split the group to accommodate different objectives. An average intermediate group can expect 4-5000 vertical feet a day which can be 3-5 runs. An average, strong keen expert group can get 5-7000’ vertical a day which can be 4-8 runs.
When is the best time to plan a trip? When do I find the best skiing?
We don’t believe there is a “bad time” to go skiing! We will show our guests a great time skiing in whatever conditions we find. Please understand we cannot control the weather and are committed to finding you the best possible snow available during your stay with us. No matter the conditions, there’s always a bright side as the whole mountain experience is what our guests remember in the end.
Though the days are shorter, early season generally offers the driest snow and coldest powder. The opportunity to ski a wide variety of elevations and aspects is available then as always. Guests tend to trend toward the middle of February, which creates more availability in January. Temps can range from -10 to -20 C (-4 to 23 F) in January. February and March are typically the most popular ski weeks. Later season we usually have a deeper snowpack. Our guides then use the terrain differently: more planning in regards to time of day and aspect. Later in the season we will lead longer days and offer the ability to travel further from the lodge. Bigger objectives become more common. Temperatures typically are milder in March: -5 to -10 C (14 to 23 F), though we have had a few days of -30C (-22 F) in March. Storms generally produce more snowfall later in the season.
Do you have any tree skiing?
YES! We have fantastic tree skiing. Our terrain offers great options for the days we can’t see in the alpine. Our tree skiing is nicely spaced and naturally gladed for excellent skiing. And, it’s only going to get better! Our glading application was recently approved and we have begun (this fall) a five year program to open up lots more tree skiing in the valley, from steep drops to nice open glades.
What are the accommodations like?
The Boulder Hut consists of several buildings to support our guests’ experience. The main building is the Boulder Hut itself in which we serve meals, socialize, and relax after a day of skiing. Next to the Hut is a building called The Casa de Suenos (House of Dreams). This is where guests enjoy a comfortable night’s sleep. It is an open two story building with individual beds. Flannel duvets, sheets, and pillows are supplied. A drying room ensures your gear is ready for the next day of skiing. In addition to the two main buildings, accommodations for the staff are located in a separate building. A small workshop is available for any repairs or ski tune ups needed during your stay. An indoor pee toilet is located downstairs in the Casa and two separate outhouses are close by. All the buildings are heated with wood fired stoves. A mico-hydro system powers the stereo, lights and recharges batteries.
How’s the food?
Incredible! Our professional cooking staff is well trained in this remote mountain environment to make you feel as though you are at a fine dining restaurant in a metropolitan city! The food is delicious, calorie filled, healthy and purchased locally in Kimberley whenever possible. Our down home hospitality means nutritious, delicious meals served family style. The home-cooked meals feature fresh meat, fresh vegetables and fresh fruit. Guests are expected to share in the dishwashing after meals. Breakfast is served at 8:00 a.m. Guests make lunches from a generous buffet before breakfast and dinner is served around 6:00 p.m.
What if I have some dietary restrictions?
We can accommodate most every food situation you can throw at us. As long as we get ample notice of any dietary restrictions our staff can adequately prepare. Please fill out the Food Allergy and Medical Form we will send you and return it to us a minimum of two weeks prior to your trip. Guests are always welcome to bring items conforming to particular dietary need, special snacks, etc.
May I pack wine or beer?
We don't serve alcohol but you are welcome to bring beer, wine or your beverage of choice as long as it fits within your 16 kg (35 lb) weight limit (see below). (For reference, a 6-pack of 12-ounce cans weighs 1.8 kg / 4.1 lbs) We will have a scale at the landing zone to weigh suspect bags.
Does the Lodge have Internet access?
Our philosophy is to offer a ski holiday during which guests spend time enjoying the surroundings and the company of other guests cell- and Internet-free. Recognizing the information driven world we live in today, we approach the experience as authentic backcountry: enjoying the conversation at dinner and the excitement of what the day will bring tomorrow. We find our guests appreciate the opportunity to disconnect from the distractions of the outside world during their stay.
Staff and visiting guides do have the capability to communicate with the outside world and for it to communicate with us should we have an emergency, or should your family need to reach you in the event of one. Our guides are online twice daily. They access all the necessary information available to them to make well-informed decisions on behalf of our guests. Weather observations and reporting is communicated within the industry. Documenting and forecasting are season-long responsibilities.
What if I have to cancel?
Written cancellations for individual packages prior to the 90-day deadline will be refunded minus a $250 administration fee. Cancellations received after the 90-day deadlines are non-refundable, however, you may transfer your reservation to another week depending on availability. We recommend guests purchase trip cancellation (travel) insurance.
Trip insurance and emergency evacuation coverage (and medical coverage if you need it) may be obtained through a number of different agencies, including:
What should I bring?
Your powder skis and smiles! Bring some cool stories to share at dinner or on the up track. Bring a couple of pairs of socks; your roommates will thank you. Bring some beer! But seriously, bring the proper gear and clothes to stay outside all day. Clothing that will wick away moisture while you are climbing, but will keep you warm while you are shredding the POW! Bring a warm layer: a puffy or down coat. The weather conditions can be wide-ranging. No laundry facilities are present at the lodge; please take this into account when packing. Here is a list to help you get started.
- Avalanche transceiver with fresh batteries (we rent these if you need one)
- Water bottles/CamelBak
- Probe & shovel (we rent these too)
- Skis, poles, boots and skins
- Splitboard and skins
- GoreTex-type jacket & pants
- 2-4 pairs of socks
- Day pack
- Synthetic or wool long underwear (tops & bottoms)
- Personal repair kit (for your bindings)
- Hat, extra mitts / gloves
- Personal first aid kit (blisters)
- Fleece, wool sweater, or down jacket
- Casual clothing and slippers for the hut
- Washcloth & small towel for drying off after sauna
- Soap, shampoo, and other personal toiletries
How is the number and sequence of flight passengers decided?
We will coordinate the flight list once we have accounted for everyone at our initial meeting. On the flight out of the lodge at the end of your stay, we try to put guests who are traveling the longest distance on the first helicopter to help them get a start on their travels.
What do I wear for the helicopter flight to Boulder Hut?
Please wear your ski apparel and have ski boots ready to put on at our meeting place. Please have gloves, toque (hat), and eye protection ready to put on before your flight. We will walk approx 50m from the meeting place to the helicopter landing zone where you can put on your ski boots before flight.
Do we have any luggage restrictions?
YES. You are permitted 16 kg (35 lbs) of clothing and gear in a duffle or two small bags, excluding ski gear. Please pack small and light. The compartments on the helicopter are small and bags that can be flexible are best. A medium duffle bag, half-full, works well.
Can I help load the helicopter?
No. Thanks for the offer, but your only job around the helicopter is to listen to the instructions of the pilot and the Boulder Adventures staff and to do what they ask you to do. You will be instructed on how to approach, enter, exit and walk to staging areas while the staff manages the loads. After the helicopter has left the area, you are encouraged to help move bags and shuttle supplies to the lodge.