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Learn about our skier and snowboarder ability guidelines.

Helicopter skiing is not an activity reserved for professional “extreme” skiers. Most accomplished skiers and snowboarders have the necessary skills to heli-ski. Powderbird guides will match your ability level to our broad mix of terrain, from gentle ridges and bowls to steeper more exciting runs. Perfect style and technical expertise are not pre-requisites, but the ability to control your speed in a variety of snow conditions is critical. There may be trees and other natural features that are more challenging than on the maintained slopes of a ski area. It is necessary that you are proficient at kick-turning, traversing, side-slipping and snow-plowing. These skills will help you handle anything we might encounter.

To fully enjoy helicopter skiing, it helps to have previous soft snow experience and enough endurance to ski a full day at a moderate pace. Though we try to access the best snow available, occasionally we encounter sections of tricky skiing such as heavy snow or crust. On some days, backcountry snow conditions can be exhilarating for seasoned soft-snow skiers, while at the same time intimidating for less experienced clients.

However, snow in the backcountry can often be more consistent and easier to ski than the snow found within the ski areas. Tricky snow can often be easily negotiated if you are on the newest generation of wide-bodied skis or backcountry snowboards.

Please note that once we leave our base, we do not return until the end of the day. If you are flown in early for any reason, we must charge you for the full day of skiing, plus the cost of the fly-in. Wondering what level of skier you are and where you might fit in for heli-skiing?

Wondering which type you are? Click here for a short quiz that will let you know.