April 19, 2014

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Snowcat Skiing

Snowcat Skiing is at the heart of American Mountain Holidays winter experiences. Why? Snowcat skiing offers the perfect first backcountry skiing experience. You are able to see what it’s like to travel through the pristine mountain backcountry free of lifts, trail signs, restaurants and hundreds of skiers on the same mountain at the same time. The first trip opens your eyes to a new world of skiing and your mind to the freedom of the hills.

Cat skiing happens at a relaxed pace allowing you to learn, experience and open your head to what the backcountry experience is about. You will meet other snow riders from all over the planet and by day’s end you will have formed friendships through the shared experience. This is the essence of the experience that has been lost at ski areas. Think we are talking about the fringe here? Almost every ski area we carry has a cat operation within one hours drive and some are even on terrain adjacent to the ski area: Keystone, Aspen and Alta.

Your ability needs to be a strong intermediate skier with experience in different snow conditions, not just groomed runs. From this base you are joined with backcountry powder skis provided by the cat skiing service that offer easier balance and stability in the different backcountry snow conditions. Of course, this is all about POWDER!!! That elusive, effervescent experience that your very capable guide will lead you to, have you enjoy and begin to teach you about the backcountry skiing experience.

Each person carries an avalanche transceiver and you are instructed on how to use these devices in the morning orientation along with how to ski with a guide. (Never ski below the guide.) The advantage of cat skiing is that they operate in most all weather conditions, especially when it is snowing that fresh new powder!

Suddenly after a few runs in the open, boundless expanse of the backcountry powder; your mind has opened up to a whole new ski and riding experience. Backcountry powder skiing and its variations: the rich and deeply personal experience of alpine touring; climbing with skins that are removed prior to your downhill run.

At the pinnacle of the backcountry powder skiing experience is helicopter skiing. This is a faster paced, higher adrenaline form of snow cat skiing and it is best enjoyed after a few trips in a snowcat so you are familiar with the conditions found in the backcountry, the safety procedures and skiing with a guide. (Please visit our Heli-Skiing page.)

We invite you through the experience of snowcat skiing into a new world that brings back the essence of the skiing: the camaraderie of a shared day, the quiet solitude of the winter alpine landscape as your skis glide quietly below you turn after turn. The romance of skiing has not been lost, it just moved to a little more remote address.