When you get the call there’s an open seat at Kingfisher Heliskiing, you drop what your doing and make the 7 hour drive north into the Monashees! That’s exactly what happened on Saturday night and late Monday morning I was showing Customs my passport heading into British Columbia.
Kingfisher Heli is a 4 year old operation and the brainchild of Tim Shanks and Matt Devlin long time ski guides. Kingfisher is located in the Monashee Mountains a short 75 minute drive from the Kelowna airport. This zone is known for it’s Legendary Monashee Powder. Over the past few years I’ve driven by their Heli base numerous times and it has been on my Hit list since then, plus I’ve heard and seen some great things operation.
Monday night I arrived just in time for a full blown gourmet dinner at the Gold Panner Lodge where I was able to meet the Kingfisher team and the other heli guests.
I was grouped up with a family of Heli Ski Virgins from Ontario. This Father, son and daughter crew were very excited but on the other hand a little nervous about this adventure. Andrew the father said Heli skiing was on his Bucket list and he wanted to share this experience with his kids. We’ll here they are!
Tuesday morning we woke to 15cm of blower and temps in the -7 Celcius range down low. After our heli Safety briefing and transceiver introduction we were flying in the A-Star heading for higher ground. As the bird took off Daughter Abby’s eyes were as big as saucers only to match her smile.
After a short flight we were dropped off on ridge that had a nice moderate slope with just a few trees. Perfect spot for our Guide Felix Viax to assess the Heli ski Virgins. This Family got it figured out quickly and by the bottom of the run they were on their skis like they’d be a dozen times before.
Now it was time to move on to some other spots and with over 120 Hectares of tenure Kingfisher has plenty of terrain options and some sweet tree skiing zones. Due to the weather we held up in little basin with plenty of choices of trees, chutes and some steep open shots.
The snow was incredible as the area just previously got hit with a brutal cold spell (-25 Celcius) sucking any moisture there was in the snow out! Blower Pow was to be had as we popped in and out of a variety of terrain. With some cloudy skies and flat light the trees were the place to be.
Kingfisher is Legit and I can’t wait to get back!
Check it out kingfisherheliskiing.com
Here’s a short :30 GoPro edit from the day.