In fact, the Powder Highway’s northern apex of Rogers Pass (on which Great Canadian Heli-Skiing sits) consistently receives the most reliably enormous snowfalls in all of Canada. Mount Fidelity in the heart of Glacier National Park on the Pass records the highest snowfall in the country, with an average of 546 inches (1399 centimeters) annually. This spot also tops out the list for the most days with snow on the ground, averaging a whopping 271 days—the vast majority of the year. And because of its location so far from the coast, all that snow is often the light powder that makes for the best kind of deep, weightless ski turns.
It’s no wonder then that some of the most storied heli-skiing, cat skiing and backcountry lodges are situated near Golden and Revelstoke, on either side of Rogers Pass. Or that this is the place that heli-skiing originated as the pinnacle of ski adventure back in the 1960s, just south of Great Canadian’s lodge in the Purcells.
The storms that top up the snowpack here are so consistently generous that it’s created a unique feeling in this region that there’s plenty of powder to go around. That sentiment contributes to the laid-back character the Kootenays are famous for, even though some of the world’s most renowned skiers and mountaineers live here and continue to tick off first descents and epic traverses through these mountains on a seasonal basis.
The Powder Highway, and particularly Rogers Pass, is something of a magic pocket in B.C. Most people have to see it to believe it. And even then, it’s the stuff of dreams, and we often have to keep reminding ourselves that we’re awake, skiing some of the deepest snow in the country, day after day.