CHUGAGH ALASKA SKI TOURING
Guided Backcountry Skiing Trips To Chugagh Mountains In Alaska
Skiing in the coastal, Chugach Mountains of Alaska is as good as skiing gets. The mountains are big, the snow is normally deep, stable, and cold, and the, well, terrain speaks for itself.
On average, annual snowfall is in the ballpark of 650” near the coast, with some years receiving much more than that! The paradoxical challenge to backcountry skiing here is that we need the snow to stop falling to be able to physically see and safely ski! Most ski terrain is well above tree-line and visibility is next to impossible without the contrast of direct sunlight. Some days are simply better than others for being out skiing, but across the range there are often are variations in the weather. Wild and stormy weather is what makes the skiing in the Chugach so unique and compelling when it clears, though. After all, if the weather was clear and sunny all the time, it would just be another mountain range! On any ski trip to Alaska, patience is key. Those who pay their dues are often rewarded with the best days of their lives.
Ski Touring Safari
On this ski-based road trip, we access a variety of terrain and ski touring venues across southern central Alaska. We explore the best of what the Chugach and Talkeetna Mountains have to offer. We will travel by car, ski during the day and stay at local accommodations as we explore Alaska. Based on snow conditions and weather, we aim to ski the best snow and terrain that the area offers. Along the way, we will also learn some skills associated with steep skiing and glacier travel.
While these trips are ski-touring focused skinning in each day from roadways, it can also be greatly advantageous to take advantage of a helicopter for a first drop off at altitude to start the day. It certainly isn't requisite for all objectives but with the huge scale of the mountains at play here, getting the initial up out of the way can be a huge help, particularly when skiing back to back days.
Due to the variable weather in the area, we approach any itinerary to Alaska with flexibility. Our typical trip would be about 8 days with 5-6 days of skiing combined with some travel and rest/weather days. The longer duration of the trip adds some insurance for good skiing in the mountains. For those interested in heli-sking opportunities, it is possible (additional cost) if snow conditions, weather, and short notice availability align.
We have found that trips that concentrate on ski-touring are the best way to hedge bets against the weather when skiing in Alaska. While heli-skiing is wonderful, it is also extremely weather dependent. If the weather is poor, there are often few alternatives. If one's focus is on ski-touring, we can still ski or shift base if the weather is really bad to avoid getting skunked.
Season: Feb 21 - April 21
Trip Length: 8 Days
Bookings Size: 2 minimum, 8 maximum
Ratio: 4:1 max
Fitness: Good to Very Good
Ability: High Advanced to Expert level skier
Price per Group:
$6,950 1-3 people
$12,950 4-6 people
Travel: Arrive in Anchorage, Drive to Palmer (1hr)
Day 1: Day Touring Hatcher Pass, Avy Rescue Training
Day 2: (Drive 4 hrs) Glacier Training Thompson Pass
Day 3: Day Touring Thompson Pass (Heli Drop)
Day 4: Rest Day - Poor Weather -
Day 5: Day Touring Thompson Pass (Heli Drop)
Day 6: Day Touring Thompson Pass
Day 7: (Drive 3hrs) Day Touring Northern Chugach (Heli Drop)
Day 8: Day Touring Hatcher Pass
Travel: Fly out of Anchorage
Trip Does Not Include:
-Airfare to and from ANC
-Accommodation ~$100 per room/night
-Car (4WD) Rental ~$800 per vehicle/week
-Heli Access Drops ~$800-$1800 per group/drop
Our Alaska ski trips are completely customizable, so you can spend the most time on the activities you and you group want to do. Want a heli-skiing specific trip? A remote Base Camp based trip in the hills? Get ready for the ultimate backcountry skiing excursion, and contact us today to get started!
Season: February - May
Trip Length: TBD
Minimum Booking: TBD