Unearned Turns

Dec 4, 2008
Outside Magazine
Cat skiing

Cat skiing    Photo: Nathan Borchelt

By Cat

Island Lake Lodge, Fernie, British Columbia Cat skiing's main advantage—a truck-size snowcat that shuttles you to powder without the military-style stress of heli-skiing—is too often undone by the uptight skiers sharing the ride. Not so at Island Lake Lodge, where clients charter the entire 12-person cat. But what makes this the world's preeminent cat-ski operation is the terrain—7,000 acres of it, including old-growth glades and wide-open alpine expanses. $700 per person; islandlakeresorts.com

Park City Powder Cats, Oakley, Utah Although only a short drive from Park City, the Uinta Mountains feel remote. This is also one of the few east-west ranges in the country, meaning the north-facing slopes keep the 400 inches of powder that fall here flash-frozen fresh. Offering day trips for as little as $450, Powder Cats won't take you anywhere hairball, but they will find deep powder stashed in aspen glades on their 40,000-acre private tenure. pccats.com

Chatter Creek, British Columbia Chatter Creek, 60 miles northwest of Golden, represents the next generation of cat skiing, with its relaxed approach to the experience: Expect to ski steep terrain without a guide yelling at you to tighten up your tracks. Afterwards, you'll grab a Kokanee and shoot eight-ball in the lodge, which has a logger-skier vibe. But this place is all about the skiing: The cats haul you up to 10,000-foot ridgelines, and from there you have 92 square miles of open terrain beneath you. $465; chattercreek.ca

Filed To: British Columbia, Park City, Snow Sports, Downhill Skiing

More at Outside

Elsewhere on the Web


Not Now

What You Missed

Our most important headlines, sent to you every Saturday.

Thank you!