Nevadas Winter Gem
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The Ruby Mountains, a spine of small, dryish peaks in remote northeastern Nevada, don’t have any ski resorts. They do, however, host Lamoille-based Ruby Mountains Heli-Experience, which for the past 30 years has guided their spired couloirs and 10,000-foot powder fields. This March, RMH launches the latest program in a growing industry effort to broaden heli-skiing’s appeal by making it more affordable: the Alpine Touring Assist. Experienced skiers, packing their own backcountry gear and accompanied by RMH guides, get a chopper lift to the top of a peak for some unearned turns. At the bottom, clients and staff (“My younger and stronger guides,” says owner Joe Royer) strap on climbing skins and work for their subsequent runs. $300 per day with additional heli-lifts à la carte,usually about $75 per person with a full bird; helicopterskiing.com. Lodging at Lamoille House, $175; lamoillehouse.com. Or try RMH’s standard, climb-free three-day heli-package, including food, lodging, skis, and snowcat shuttles in inclement weather, for $3,500.