- Snowcat skiing places skiers in pristine, untracked meadows and glades.
- Ultra-wide skis are highly recommended for the waist-deep, fluffy powder.
- Take advantage of the full moon by taking some runs under the Colorado night sky.
- Guides accompany groups to manage the terrain, both for group ability level and avalanche safety.
Steamboat snowcat skiing or snowboarding is one of the most accessible ways to enjoy the backcountry. An experienced guide will help your group choose safe and fun terrain that is appropriate for everyone's ability level. If you've never been in the backcountry, they will brief you on avalanche safety protocols and environmental matters.
The best part about the trip is that you didn't even have to carry your skis on your back. You reached your pristine destination in the comfort of a snowcat, without the tiring effort of hiking up from the bottom!
Some things to consider about snowcat skiing:
- Either rent powder skis or snowboards or make they sure are included in the package. The wide bases will help you float on the powder and keep you from tiring too quickly.
- Dress in layers in order to regulate your body temperature throughout the day. You won't have access to a warm lodge, so bring a thermos full of hot chocolate or tea.
- Always follow the instructions of your guide. Avalanche danger in the backcountry is a very real concern!
- Don't forget to stretch your muscles throughout the day. You will likely be more exhausted and sore than after a day of skiing at a resort.
- Have fun and be ready for an incredible experience!
Where to go Snow Cat Skiing
Accessing over 10,000 acres of terrain, Buffalo Pass routinely receives some of the deepest, driest and most consistent snowfall in the Rocky Mountain region, often over 500 inches a year.
In the winter season, snow enthusiasts flock to the area to access the world-class champagne powder. The storm may have been 10 days ago, but the face-shots make you think it was yesterday!
Steamboat has designated relationships with companies to operate snowcat skiing in this area of the Routt National Forest, so take advantage of these special partnerships!
Given Steamboat's history as a ranching area, it's no surprise that the private ranches hold vast amount of land, including some great areas for skiing. Private access means even more solitude and remoteness in these controlled-access areas.
Rentals & Fees
Snowcat skiing is generally sold as a package, meaning rentals are often included. If you have a large group of friends, consider hiring the entire snowcat for a group discount.
You can bring your own skis, but think hard! Using thin skis instead of the recommended ultra-wides could easily tire you to the point of exhaustion.
Hire a Guide
Guides will direct the group through terrain appropriate to the ability levels of the skiers or snowboarders. Nobody wants runs too easy or too difficult. Rather, like Goldilocks, it should be just right.
Always, guides are included for safety. They will be the ones who decide if terrain is safe to ski, or avalanche-prone and too dangerous.