In case you’ve been living under a backcountry rock, you’ve probably noticed that tech bindings are the new ski touring normal. In the words of Powder Magazine’s 2016 Buyers Guide:
“The next time you tour in a frame binding, like the Salomon Guardian or Marker Duke, will probably be your last.”
Yet as much as lighter weight and easier tourability has invaded backcountry freeride bindings, not all tech bindings are created equal.
“Alternatively, bombing chair laps on a tech binding feels like bringing a knife to a gun fight.”
No cage required in 2016 with the Dynafit Beast 14
A heliskiing holiday doesn’t always have to be about skiing. There’s the food, cross-country skiing and snow shoeing around the lodge, the pub, ping pong table, massages, and did I mention food? Last Frontier Helisking is like no other heliskiing company, with a tenure the third of the size of Switzerland, it’s the worlds largest. Thereby it’s bound to have a few unique areas. One of which is the Iskut River Hot Springs. The hot springs are about a 15 minute chopper ride from Bell 2 Lodge. Located right on the banks of the Iskut River, it’s also an ecological reserve and lies within the territory of the Tahltan First Nation. It’s wild country, with no established trails or roads leading to it. You can access it by floating down the river in a dingy (which may be a tad chilly this time of year) or helicopter.
Just a quick flight to the hot pools: Dave Silver
The backcountry is a wonderful and dangerous place. As soon as you leave the relative safety of the ski resort, there is an increase in risk. Over the last five years we’ve seen more and more folks heading out of bounds in that never ending search that skiers and riders know so well; the search for deep, untracked turns away from the crowds. But the mountain environment is never to be taken lightly. There are myriad risks out there that don’t exist in your local resort. Nor is there the safety net of being with a trained and qualified guide in a heliski or ski touring operation. Continue reading
New developments this month include the launch of our brand new 2016 promo video, a look at why you should consider January for heli-skiing, and the latest pre-season snow updates.
As advanced as the backcountry equipment has become, no piece of equipment will last forever. Gear can and will wear out gradually over many seasons, or if loaded in a certain way, break well before its lifetime has elapsed. With these few backcountry repair tips, potential trip-ending mishaps can be fixed without putting an end to your trip.
Freedom – in black and white | Dave Silver
These days, calling something “the best” is all over the Internet. “The best mountain bike video”, “the best places to vacation”, “the best spots to hit up after a long night on the town” – but what really makes something or someplace the best? In the end, it all comes down to a matter of opinion – either from one specific person or from a collaborative group. And since it is truly impossible to accurately define “the best shots” from our archives, we have compiled a gallery of some of our “favorite shots” taken thus far during Last Frontier Heli’s 20 years of adventures. So take a break from your work, grab a cup of coffee, kick your feet up and enjoy some of “the best” photos of Last Frontier Heli history…
This is why you go heliskiing.
Photo – Randy Lincks
It can be difficult to choose a heliski operator. Here in BC, we’ve got some of the best operations to choose from and it can be hard to sort out who’s who by looking at company websites. At Last Frontier Heliskiing, we stand by what we do. And there’s no better way to see that than going to the folks who really know what it’s like to come heliskiing with us for a week: our guests. Continue reading
Winter anticipation is at an all time high this time of year. Snow lines are creeping into the valleys, resorts are boasting their coverage with marketing imagery and people are purchasing the gear they need to get shred-ready. Early season skiing is on everyone’s minds.
Room with a view from Metal Dome | Photo Vince Shuley
Winter is coming | Steve Rosset
As the snow begins to fall and winter storms start lining up, the excitement for the upcoming ski/snowboard season builds all over the world. And although we all love those light, fluffy snowflakes, many times storms bring in wet, heavy powder – and if you don’t have the proper equipment to keep you dry, a day of free refills could quickly be cut short by being completely soaked – all the way down to your skivvies. Let’s be honest, a plastic garbage bag with strategically cut armhole and head cutouts on top of your regular ski clothes would be your best option for staying dry – but for the more fashion-conscious folks, let’s take a closer look at whether Gore-Tex® is still the most waterproof and breathable technology on the market.
Ms. Dyer enjoying the steep and deep.
Photo: Grant Gunderson
At Last Frontier Heliskiing, we pride ourselves on our terrain. It’s at the heart of what we do. To showcase that terrain, each winter we pick a week, well in advance, and send a couple of athletes, a photographer and a filmmaker to spend a week doing what we do all winter long: shred pow in some of the most remote mountains on earth. It’s a challenge to organize, and every year it’s a different week, so we never know what we’re going to get in terms of weather and snow. But that’s the kicker; we want them to see what you’ll see.
January. There’s something about ticking over into the New Year that gets us stoked for skiing. Family obligations (or occupation obligations if you happen to work in the service industry) over the holiday period are now in the rear view mirror. All you need to look forward to now is January turns.
Good sir, would you be kind enough to pass me that snorkel? | Photo Dave Silver
The view from my office last February. | Shannon Skouras
Jobs vary in the Outdoor Industry – some are office-based, others are in the field and a select few are pretty much split right down the middle. I went from a desk job at Full Speed Ahead (FSA – a bicycle components brand) where I was in the office 8-5, commuting to work and only having weekends to adventure to the career I hold now – where I work 7 days a week but split my time 50/50 between my home office and the outdoors (and I get to make my own schedule – SCORE!). Although there are thousands of jobs and careers within this industry, I can only pull from my own experiences – so this week, I give you my own personal pros and cons of working in the ever changing, insanely competitive world of the outdoor industry.
We provide our guests with a 4 hour shuttle from the airport to our lodges. Allowing you to relax and enjoy the scenery, while munching on lunch (need I say more?). Nevertheless, some may want a more adventurous option. Here are five ways to do so:
Last winter guests arrived via float plane to the harbour in Stewart from Prince Rupert. Skimming over the water and dancing among mountains – the flight is incredible. You can book a chartered flight from Prince Rupert (Inland Air Charters), leaving right from the domestic airport or take the weekly mail plane from Ketchikan, Alaska (Taquanair) for under $200. Flights arrive daily to Ketchikan from Seattle and Anchorage as do ferries from Bellingham, Juneau, Prince Rupert, and Skagway. Why not make the holiday a little more memorable and arrive to Last Frontier Heliskiing in style?
Among the Clouds | The Globe and Mail
Groups of 4 mean more skiing for everyone…
Photo – Reuben Krabbe
There’s over a metre of snow at 1400m in Ripley Creek. Winter has arrived! Thank god, because I don’t know about you, but I have a hankering to go skiing. At Last Frontier Heliskiing, we’re neck deep in our pre-season preparation and we’re hoping for another awesome year in the far reaches of Northern BC. While there have been a few small changes for this year we wanted to take this opportunity to announce one of our most exciting changes for next year. Sure, it’s a year away, but we’re stoked to let you know that we will be going to groups of 4 skiers for 2017. Small group heliskiing has always been one of the cornerstones of our operations. We are all about maximizing your time out there and we feel that moving from groups of 5 to groups of 4 has some major advantages. Continue reading
Over the past five years, Last Frontier Heliskiing has been putting together annual film trips to showcase the reliable snow conditions and huge variety of skiing terrain that we are renowned for. These weeklong trips are scheduled far in advance, as it takes time to round up photographers, videographers and athletes. All our films have been shot at different times of the season, and thus give a realistic idea of what a typical heli skiing week would be like at Bell 2 Lodge or Ripley Creek. In February, 2015, photographer Grant Gunderson and professional skiers Lynsey Dyer and Josh Daiek joined us for a week of heliskiing at the Bell 2 Lodge and Ripley Creek. Videographer Grant Baldwin was also on the trip to shoot our latest promotional film Planet Snow.
Shooting photos from the heli gives an intrigueing perspective on the landscape | Photo Grant Gunderson