Here's your chance to ride at the legendary Baldface Valhalla
This tour is about getting steep and deep in the Kootenays. Join our Baldface Valhalla Tour for 2 days of private cat skiing at Baldface Valhalla plus you’ll get to ride the legendary resorts, Whitewater and Red Mountain.
The Valhalla Range is a brand new cat-ski tenure in the very next valley from Baldface. It’s their rugged neighbour with the same deep-snow quality. We’ve lined up a private snowcat just for our group and and you can be sure there’s plenty of untracked powder to go around with over 21,000 acres to roam. If you’ve been to Baldface before, you can expect the same good vibes and professional service that Baldface has offered for 20 years.
Be one of the first to join us as we explore this awe-inspiring, high alpine terrain. Expect consistent fall-line descents with big-mountain terrain features including chutes, cliffs, exposed lines, and just general gnar to take your riding to the next level!
We also check out two of our favourite BC ski areas; Red Mountain and Whitewater. These resorts play host to an enormous amount of freeride terrain with bowls, cliffs, pillows and tree runs all located in-bounds.
Throughout the tour we stay in a private hotel in the heart of downtown Nelson so you can live and breathe the Kootenay lifestyle. Each night head out into the town of Nelson, home to around 80 bars and restaurants.
21 January - 27 January, 2024
Advanced - Comfortable on black diamond runs and have experience in powder and trees.
CAD $5,490 per personCurrency Convertor
Freeride - Steep and deep
Why Travel With Mint
In a rapidly changing travel industry it’s important to know that your travel provider is accredited, accountable and responsible. We are a registered member of AFTA and IATA and conduct business in accordance with the ATAS Charter and Code of Conduct. When you travel with Mint you can have peace of mind that you are booking with a qualified and established travel operator with over 20 years of expertise. And as a full-service travel agent, we are able to take care of your flights, insurance, stopovers and pre or post tour arrangements.
Ride Baldface Valhalla
Be one of the first to join us as we explore this awe-inspiring, high alpine terrain at Baldface Valhalla.
Peak Powder Season
You'll get to spend 5 full days riding in the Kootenays during the PEAK of the pow season.
Seats are limited
Baldface Valhalla is easily the most well known backcountry operation in the world and getting a seat on the cat is high on every snowboarders bucket list.
Warm-up the legs at Whitewater located just outside Nelson. Here we ride everything from open bowls and steep tree runs with our local guides who know this place better than most.
Red offers up steeps, open trees, powder meadows and groomers on 360-degrees of exposure and our local guides can find good powder snow on all aspects.
Baldface Valhalla Tour
Get in touch for an itinerary and more info
ABOUT BALDFACE VALHALLA
The Valhalla Range is huge, 21,500 acres to be exact. To put that into perspective that's twice the size of Whistler Blackcomb combined! Valhalla is located in the Selkirk range in British Columbia’s West Kootenay area. The highest peak tops out at 8,000 feet (2,438 meters). Annual snowfall accumulation can amount to 23 feet within the tree line with 30 feet at higher elevations.
TYPICAL CAT SKI DAY
Days begin with an early morning coffee and then a drive to the Staging Area where you'll transition into the snowcat for a full day of deep mountain riding. Expect the first descent around 10:30am and then non-stop fun while with the crew while you clock up on average 13,000 to 18,000 feet per day. In the cat you've got plenty of hand-made snacks, tasty lunches, and bevvies to help you stay energized all day long.
This mountain gets rave reviews around the world for it’s terrain and snow. With the highest lift topping out at 2045 metres and consistent storms cycles slamming into BC from the Pacific it’s no surprise that this place scores over 12 metres of blower pow each season. It’s common to get deep turns throughout the season and for this reason we keep coming back to Whitewater.
ABOUT RED MOUNTAIN
Red offers steeps, open trees, powder meadows and groomers on 360-degrees of exposure, so you’ll be able to find good snow regardless of the time of year. One of the main reasons to ride at Red is the backcountry access. The resort operates 16 square kilometres of touring-accessed, uncontrolled backcountry. The resort has a long tradition of allowing people to ride where they want.
SNOW & CONDITIONS
Nelson can be a cold place in winter, with temperatures typically ranging from -10 to -30°C / 14 to -22°F. Days will be short, with an average of 6 hours of sunlight per day. January is the ideal time of year to ride in Canada. What you can expect is light dry, snow, perfect for riding powder. Nelson scores some of the biggest storms in BC so you never need to worry about lack of snow. Expect terrain ranging from open bowls, sustained steep forests, mid-alpine tree sections and natural terrain features like log drops and mini-pipe gullies.
After you sign up for a tour, you will receive pre-trip emails with specific information about your tour, the arrival and departure day process, information about the destination, packing suggestions, and other relevant information to help you prepare for your trip. In addition to this, you have access to our customer care team who are just a phone-call away. And as a full-service travel agent, we are able to take care of your flights, insurance, stopovers and pre or post tour arrangements.
Meet your expert team
LOCAL GUIDES & PARTNERSHIPS
Mint opens doors around the globe. Our long-standing relationships with local guides, local legends, professional athletes, local businesses and resorts allow us special access to places and people. Travelling with us, you go behind the scenes to get a close-up view of each destination. You’re enriched by the knowledge of our experts and local guides.
Meet your expert team
Hayden is born and bred in the Kootenays and grew up riding both Red and Whitewater, so it's fair to say he knows this region like the back of his hand. If he's not guiding at Baldface Valhalla, he's either guiding with Mint in Japan or mountain bike touring in summer.
YOUR TOUR INCLUDES
- 2 days of back-country shredding at Baldface Valhalla
- Guide services and avalanche safety course for cat ski days
- Transfers from Nelson to Baldface Valhalla
- Lunches, snacks and use of backcountry safety equipment for cat ski days
- 6 nights single share accommodation in a private lodge, private ensuite room (1 person per room)
- Breakfast daily
- Spokane Airport Transfers, arrival and departure day
- 2 days resort transfers, Nelson to Whitewater
- 1 day resort transfer, Nelson to RED Mountain
- 2 guided days at Whitewater
- 1 guided days at RED Mountain
- 2 day lift ticket, Whitewater
- 1 day lift ticket, RED Mountain
- Mint guides on hand throughout tour
WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED
- Travel insurance
- Lunches at Red Mountain and Whitewater – expect to pay CAD $20 – $30 per meal
- 6 dinners – expect to pay CAD $30 – $50 per meal
- Hot springs entry fee – expect to pay between CAD $18
- Any meals, drinks, snacks not listed
- Tips for guides at Baldface Valhalla
This tour is suitable for advanced snowboarders and skiers. You should be comfortable on black diamond runs, frequently ride/ski off-piste at a resort or in the backcountry, can confidently navigate any alpine and treed terrain and maintain a continuous rhythm and pace, even through traverses and flat sections.
If you’re not quite up to the ability level for this tour, don’t dismiss the possibility of experiencing the best powder turns of your life! Talk with our team and they will be able to make recommendations for other suitable tours, or how to work towards joining this tour.
When you are ready to book, we’ll ask you to self-evaluate what type of rider/skier you are. This will help us book you on the right tour. The more accurately you’re able to self-assess your on-snow abilities, the more you (and others in your group) will be able to relax and enjoy your tour.
Wilderness skiing is not inherently safe and there are risks, dangers and hazards skiers must accept. Safety is our number one priority. Our guides strictly follow snowcat skiing industry standards for safety. All of our guides are ACMG, CAA, or CSGA certified and are wilderness first-aid caregivers.
Once at the lodge, every guest will be given a transceiver and hands-on personal instruction on how to use it. We strongly urge our guests to listen carefully to their trained guides.
Furthermore, all skiers are required to sign a comprehensive release of liability and waiver prior to participating in wilderness skiing with us. It is recommended that all skiers purchase travel or accident insurance. Your insurance broker can advise you as to what other types of insurance you may require, such as disability insurance and life insurance.
REQUIRED SKILL LEVEL
Baldface Valhalla’s terrain requires advanced to expert level powder skills in tight trees and variable natural snow conditions. Many of our runs feature technical entrances, with features such as pillows, drops and chutes. If you’re not sure, give us a call. The only way to guarantee the speed/ability levels of your group is to book an entire snowcat with like-minded friends.
Guests will be riding up to 15,000 feet per day and need to be in good physical condition. Consider a conditioning program to prepare for your trip. If you are unable to keep up with the group you may be asked to sit out and will not be reimbursed for any missed time in the cat. Weather and ski conditions are impossible to predict so guests must be prepared to ride or ski anything. We do not groom any runs! If you have never boarded powder or shy away from it at your local resort, this is not the place to learn. Baldface terrain has lots of glades and trees – please be prepared to ride and ski in the trees!
Alcohol or non-prescription drugs are not permitted while skiing or snowboarding.
All participants must be 19 years of age or older.
WHY TRAVEL WITH MINT?
In a rapidly changing travel industry it’s important to know that your travel provider is accredited, accountable and responsible. Mint is a registered member of AFTA and IATA and conducts business in accordance with the ATAS Charter and Code of Conduct. When you travel with Mint you can have peace of mind that you are booking with a qualified and established travel operator with over 20 years of expertise. And as a full-service travel agent, we can take care of your flights, insurance, stopovers and pre-or post tour arrangements.
WHAT IS THE BALDFACE VALHALLA TOUR?
Our Baldface Valhalla Tour is a once in a lifetime opportunity to get yourself a rare seat on the cat because this operation books out years in advance. We include warm-up days riding with local guides at Whitewater and Red Mountain who have an in-depth knowledge of the resort which gives you the ultimate advantage when chasing untracked snow in-bounds. Be prepared to ride in the trees for multiple days straight. Of course weather and conditions are impossible to predict so guests must be prepared to ride anything.
HOW FAR IN ADVANCE DO I NEED TO BOOK?
It’s hard to estimate when the tour will fill up. That being said, this is a bucket list trip that typically books out by mid year, so our advice is to book as soon as you’ve made the decision to travel. That way you can secure your preferred travel dates and you won’t be disappointed. Bookings close 90 days before a trip departs, however most tours typically fill up well before this.
WHAT IS THE ITINERARY?
For further information, including a tour itinerary send us an enquiry.
WHAT TYPE OF TERRAIN WILL WE RIDE/SKI?
On this tour we will ride a mix of terrain from resort to backcountry. There’s a range of terrain to access from alpine, playful or challenging tree runs, some with features such as pillows and drops. Expect deep snow, soft landings and lots of fun features. The backcountry zones are cat-accessed at Baldface Valhalla, however there are times when a short boot pack is necessary. Snowshoes/split boards/touring skis are not required.
WHAT HAPPENS ON ARRIVAL AND DEPARTURE DAY?
Once you’ve signed up for the tour we will send you through a comprehensive guide with details about the tour including the arrival and departure day process, a map of where we meet, recommended arrival and departure times, flight options, Visa requirements and transportation information.
WHAT IF I’M TRAVELLING SOLO?
About 99% of our guests are travelling solo, so you’ll be in good company. Our groups generally mix well due to a shared interest in snow sports and an eagerness to explore all that Canada has to offer. The accommodation for this tour is single share i.e. 1 bed / 1 guests per room.
HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE ON THIS TOUR?
There’s just 10 spots up for grabs on this tour. We’ve secured a private cat just for the use of our group, so expect good times with a like minded group.
WHICH RESORTS WILL WE VISIT?
This is a set itinerary that includes in-bounds guiding at Red Mountain and Whitewater along with cat skiing at Baldface Valhalla.
CAN I ARRIVE EARLY OR STAY ON AFTER THE TOUR?
For most tours you can arrive earlier or stay later. We can tailor the trip to suit your travel plans. Speak with one of our tour specialists when you are booking and they will be more than happy to assist.
WHO ARE THE GUIDES?
All of our tours are guided by friendly, knowledgeable and expertly trained guides who are passionate about the mountains.
ARE FLIGHTS INCLUDED?
No, flights are not included. If you need assistance booking flights, we can recommend the best flight options for the tour.
DO I NEED TRAVEL INSURANCE?
Yes. All guests on tour need to be covered by comprehensive travel insurance. Once you have booked on the tour, we strongly recommend purchasing travel insurance. We offer all of our tour guests discounted snow specific travel insurance.
WHAT HAPPENS ONCE I’VE BOOKED?
Once you’ve booked your spot on tour, we will send you through a booking confirmation and provide updates about the tour including the arrival and departure day process, a map of where we meet, recommended arrival and departure times, flight options, Visa requirements and transportation information. We will send out a Pre Departure Guide 30 days prior to departure.
CAN I BRING MY PARTNER WHO DOESN’T SKI OR SNOWBOARD?
This tour is not recommended for non-ski or snowboard partners.
HOW DO I CHECK MY ABILITY LEVEL?
The best way to check if a tour is suited to your ability is by speaking with one of our tour specialists. They will be able to determine if the tour you have selected is a good fit for your ability, as well as suggesting other tour options.
HOW DO I GET TO NELSON / BALDFACE VALHALLA?
We’ll provide you with airport meet and greet times for Spokane Airport (USA) and recommended departure times. If it’s your fist time to Canada or if you’re unsure about travel arrangements, often we can link you up with other tour guests to travel with.
HOW DO I CHECK AVAILABILITY?
Speak with one of our tour specialists. As this is a small group tour with limited availability, it’s best to get in touch early to avoid disappointment.
DO YOU TAKE SKIERS & SNOWBOARDERS?
We are ski and snowboard friendly. Please note that the majority of our tours are led by snowboard guides.
CAN I RENT EQUIPMENT?
We can arrange rental equipment for most destinations, however we do recommend bringing your own equipment. We recommend bringing powder boards for this tour.
WHAT EQUIPMENT SHOULD I BRING?
We strongly recommend that guests dress in clothing specific for traveling in backcountry areas. We recommend that guests have a good quality waterproof jacket and pants, lightweight insulated layer, merino base layers, merino gloves and waterproof gloves, goggles with low light & high light lenses, sunglasses, balaclava, beanie, and helmet. We recommend that all guests bring their own snowboarding equipment for the tour (board, boots, bindings & outerwear). Powder boards are recommended.
WHO WILL BE ON MY TOUR?
Your group will be made up of travellers from diverse backgrounds and will be varied in age. Our groups generally mix well due to a shared interest in snow sports and an eagerness to explore all that the tour has to offer.
Whether you’re a snowboarding veteran or have just booked your first tour, the best thing you can do to get the most out of your Mint experience is to start a pre-trip fitness regime. We’re not looking for you to be an Olympic athlete, but you do need some fitness endurance. You’ll spend five, full and consecutive days on-snow, so you should be physically fit enough to comfortably ski/ride for five consecutive days. Your muscles should be up to this task, and your cardio fitness means you can sustain a consistent pace.
ARE LIFT TICKETS INCLUDED?
Yes, all lift tickets are included for this tour.
All our Canada and United States Tours are 6 nights and run from Sunday to Saturday. You’ll ride every resort mid-week to avoid the weekend day-trippers and maximise your time on-snow. If 6 nights isn’t enough, then book one of our multi-tour combo’s. Join us in Nelson, then start a new tour in a different destination the following day. Ask us about tour combo ideas and multi-tour discount.
- Sunday 21st January – Saturday 27th January, 2024
BOOK A PRIVATE TOUR
Book this as a private tour with your own guide and all the benefits of a Mint group tour – for any group, big or small. Booking a private tour so you can ride with like-minded friends is the best way to guarantee the speed and ability levels of your group.
CAD $5,490 per person
Ask about the multi-tour booking discount.
DEPOSITS AND PAYMENTS
To secure your spot on tour a 50% deposit is payable to secure your booking. The balance is due 90 days prior to tour departure.
TERMS AND CONDITIONS
View our terms and conditions HERE