Frequently Asked Questions
- What time of year should I visit the backcountry lodge?
- What happens when the group is made up of different ability levels?
- What does the kitchen supply to self catered groups?
- Can we ski out (or in)?
- Can I join the group mid week?
- Can I charge my batteries?
- Can I drive to Heather Mountain Lodge instead of taking the bus?
- Are there radios we can use at the lodge?
Sorcerer Lodge has a variety of terrain that allows us a great deal of flexibility in catering to people’s different ideas of a backcountry skiing holiday. If you are looking for "in your face" powder snow you should book earlier in the season. January, February and early March are the times when ski touring, and snowboarding folks in search of the deepest and the fluffiest come to visit. Temperatures early season in the Selkirk Mountains can drop as low as -30 degrees Celsius (-20 F?), but these days are usually accompanied by sunshine as they are related to our arctic high pressures. When the maritime low moves in, it can warm up to a balmy -5 degrees C and dump a meter of snow! Days are shorter then, but you'll get in plenty of skiing!
For those of you who are more interested in doing some bigger ski touring days out on the high glaciers, mountaineering, or peak bagging, the latter part of March, April and May might be better. You will experience fewer bad weather days, warmer temperatures, more hours of daylight and generally better travelling conditions. Spring is the time of year we play the aspect game. North faces stay cooler and offer great powder turns but we'll hunt out the afternoon corn snow on the south faces. It's also the best time to dig big sun pits, sit back and share a bottle of wine.
Having said all that however, we really don’t know what kind of weather you’ll encounter! It can rain January or be -25 in March. If you’re considering coming into Sorcerer, I’m sure you have enough mountain experience to know there ain’t no guarantees.... We are adaptable and you’ll have a great trip regardless.
We do ask for descriptions of people’s ski abilities and expectations in advance. Two guides will be on staff to accommodate each group along with an ACMG practicum student so we have no problem dividing the group up in case of a split in abilities. You will generally have an option to come home early and we have a lovely library if you decide to take a day off. It IS your holiday!
The kitchen at Sorcerer is fully equipped with a propane oven (that WILL hold the turkey) and all necessary pots and pans for a group of 18. We have all cutlery, dishes, cups and glasses. You will find, dish soap, cleaners, scrubbies, t-towels, dish cloths, bleach etc... We usually have all the spices you could want but, as these do get used by each group, if there is something really need you should bring it in just in case. We try to keep up on this but if your meal hinges on some special flavour, it might not be there.
NO!!! The terrain in this area is some of the most rugged in the world. The route out would feel like going to target practice with you as the target, as you have to ski along valley bottoms for about 10 kilometers, with huge slide paths looming above you on either side. Even in stable conditions, it would involve negotiating creek crossings and alder bashing. Meanwhile your buddies are flying overhead in a nice warm helicopter! It won’t cost you any less for the privilege of skiing either as the helicopter would be flying empty on a dovetail with the group going the opposite direction. You may as well be in the empty seat. (Or I’d have to double the other peoples heli costs... )
Certainly. It is not a problem to fly someone in at a later time however, it will be an additional heli charge. We can often keep the price down if the adjacent heliski company is in operation but the timing and cost will depend on the availability of a helicopter. Please ask us for details.
We have a regular 110 plug-in available during the day when you are out skiing. We fire up the generator for a couple hours then and you're welcome to use the outlet. However, you should have a spare battery to take with you that day.
Yes – we can accommodate a few vehicles at staging. The parking is safe but space is severely limited however. MOST of the group will have to take the shuttle bus.
Sorcerer Lodge supplies two travelling radios that groups are encouraged to take with them each day. If you are bringing your own radios, please get in touch with us in advance for the appropriate frequencies.