Bella Coola Helisports - White Saddle Ranch

Bella Coola Helisports – White Saddle Ranch

The three completely different alternatives Bella Coola Helisports offers in terms of location and accommodation all have their own merits. The historically important Tweedsmuir Lodge at the edge of a vast nature park, the Eagle Lodge closer to the coast and easily accessible, and the more inland oriented White Saddle Ranch close to Anahim Lake. Two of the three locations can be combined in a ‚Safari’-Program.

White Saddle Ranch is an active cattle ranch, providing accommodation for up to 8 skiers or boarders. The uniquely rustic family seting provides an unmatched wilderness adventure in the remote Pantheon Ranges and makes heliskiing and boarding an adventure as close to pure nature as it can get. The massive ranges around Mount Waddington, British Columbia’s highest peak, with its ever changing and absolutely impressive terrain and mostly continental snow pack are the best preconditions for a super class heliski and boarding experience.

Being located at the east of the transition zone between moister maritime and dryer continental climate, the full width of attractive snow varieties exists within the covered territory: well-binding snow packs in the west for safe steep descents and fluffy powder in somewhat more moderate terrain in the east. The licensed area of Bella Coola Helisports covers more than 10'000 squarekilometers (about the size of the Swiss Alps) and is penetrated mainly from the east when based in White Saddle Ranch.  You will find your trip easy, a straight flight of an hour from Vancouver to Anahim Lake at the edge of the skiing grounds, followed by a reasonably short transfer to the ranch in the heart of the Pantheon.

 

 

Terrain

Bella Coola Helisports is licensed for an area of over 10'700 squarekilometers. The terrain is one of the most varied in British Columbia. The highest mountain ranges of the province with an elevation of over 4'000 Meters (around Mount Waddington), huge glaciers, alpine terrain and excellently skiable, open tree zones are at your disposal.

Huge amounts of snow provide a solid base for the entire season. Obviously, the great amounts of snow sometimes are connected with somewhat difficult weather conditions.

The guests of White Saddle Ranch are less exposed to the weather systems of the Pacific. The Ranch is located on the Eastern side of the Coast Mountain Ranges at the base of the Pantheons, an extension of the inland Mount Waddington ranges. The snow is a bit dryer and lighter due to the more continental plateau climate, and there is a somewhat higher chance for sunny weather than along the coast. You have the preconditions for epic long and varied descents of utmost intensity, often in steaming powder.

Accommodation

White Saddle Ranch is home of an active cattle farm. You live in the buildings of the ranch and some independent guest housing, at the edge of the Chilkotin Plateau in cowboy land at the base of the Pantheos Ranges. The ranch provides single room accommodation for 8 guests. You will enjoy the fantastic western hospitality in a true ranch setting with its unique original atmosphere. The owners are real pioneers and make their living by cattle raising for almost fifty years.

Hearty food with excellent steaks will build up or maintain your energy levels. After your day in the mountains you will live the western life of a rancher at its very best.

Heli & safety

Bella Coola Helisports uses the functional and powerful A-Star B2 Helicopters, which provide space for four guests, the guide and the pilot.

The pilots all have an extensive flying experience in mountaineous terrain under winter conditions and work for the helicopter and heliski companies for many years.

The certified mountain guides have sound heliski guiding experience and are sworn to the high safety standards of Canadian heliski operators.

The guests will be well instructed on the rules governing skiing/boarding in alpine wilderness country, the usage of helicopters in winter conditions and the handling of transceivers and other life saving equipment in theory and practice.

Getting there

When traveling to White Saddle Ranch, you fly from Vancouver to Anahim Lake. The local airport serves also as an alternate in the rare cases when Bella Coola Airport is closed due to weather conditions. The transfer from Anahim Lake by pick-up/van  to White Saddle Ranch is a bit more than one hour. Sometimes you start skiing right off the airport.

For your trip to Vancouver the same rules apply as if you were to fly to Bella Coola. Normally you will fly into Vancouver the previous day where you will overnight in one of the close by airport hotels or a down town Vancouver hotel to enjoy at least a spectacular evening in this most fascinating Westcoast town. – Your Saturday mid morning inland flight to Anahim Lake is included in your heliskiing package. A morning transfer - even from Vancouver Downtown - to the South terminal can easily be arranged.

Program

After your arrival at the local airport around noon you will be met by a representative of BCH. Weather permitting, he will bring you straight to the hangar, where the heli is expecting you. Accordingly, you should have your personal skiing equipment close by. Ideally, you are already carrying parts of your outfit and have your necessary add-on equipment in your hand luggage, in particular your ski or boarding boots.

After a short sandwhich lunch and the necessary paper work (signing of waiver) you will be equipped with skis and a day backpack with ABS, shovel and probe as well as a transceiver. This is followed by safety and security instructions for skiing/boarding and the usage of your life saving equipment as well as the respective helicopter procedures. Right after a practical training with your transceiver you will get your first heli air time and start with your heliskiing/boarding adventure.

With this early start into heliskiing you will get the chance of  ideally seven full days of heliskiing/boarding during a weekly package, since you also will be able to ski/board in the morning of the last day before your early afternoon departure to Vancouver.

Packages & prices

Dates

  • See 'Prices'

Options

  • 7 days Skiing/Boarding // 7 nights, 8 persons
  • Safaris and Private Arrangements subject to availability

Included

  • 17 flight hours (2x8.5) for 2 groups
  • Inland flight from/to Vancouver, unless special arrangement
  • Transfers from/to Anahim Airport
  • Local Transports
  • Powderskis and sticks (no Snowboards)
  • Transceiver, shovel, probe and day backpack with ABS
  • Guides
  • 7 nights in single rooms
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily 

Not included

  • Snowboards
  • Additional flight hours
  • Tips for pilot and guides
  • Taxes
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • International flights and other travel costs to/in Vancouver
  • Insurances

Prices

«Skiing’s Final Frontier – BC’s largest, most dramatic peaks»


Season :

End of January - Mid April


7 Nights starting from C$ 122'380 + tax (group price - max 8 peop.)

(C$ 14'860 + tax per Pers.)



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