Heli skiing in British Columbia. Unreal.
Heli skiing in British Columbia with a group of pro riders, film crews from Dendrite Studios and B4Apres Media, and writers from Untracked Guides? Un-freakin-believable. Sign us up for numero tres. Last season we had just such an opportunity at TLH Heli Skiing in Gold Bridge, BC, about 4 hours drive north of Whistler.
After getting lost in Vancouver as usual (“where is that effing Lion’s Gate Bridge?!?”), we made our way to Whistler-Blackcomb for a warm up, where Epic Planks team riders Jon Whelan and Danny Arnold made a day of putting their handmade Crop Duster powder skis through the paces, playing in the park, some blown out bumps, and leftover freshies in the trees. We’d missed a blower powder day by one day…. bummer, but not really that big of a deal when you’re going to be ogling 830,000 acres (100 times bigger than Whistler) of vast, powgasmic, thigh shredding, mind numbing terrain the next day.
Following Whistler, we met up with the rest of the group to make the trek to TLH Heli Skiing, including Epic Planks athlete Alex “Blazer” Blais, who caught our eye with his sweet segment in Dendrite Studio’s award winning ski film “Out Of The Shadows.” (buy Out Of The Shadows here) Throughout the trip, Alex kept us laughing by yelling “SHOWTIME!” just before dropping in on each run. Why? Most times when riding you can (and should) check out your lines more thoroughly than a quick pass-by with the heli. Here though, when dropping in with little recon, he thought each run could be a shit show. No matter. Throughout four days of exploring TLH Heli Skiing’s awesome terrain Alex shredded it, sending the Crop Dusters over pillows, off cliffs, and through blower powder that only heli skiing, snowcat skiing, or a lot of hard work can regularly get you too. His helmet cam footage was later shown in the lodge, Crop Dusters dancing though some seriously exposed terrain before stomping a 50-foot air that had everyone gasping. Good times.
Danny and Jon also had good showings, skiing big lines, running off cliffs with a bit more gas than necessary, and just enjoying hanging out with and learning from the other Dendrite athletes, including Maxim Arsenault and Matt Elliot, who are some very cool guys and amazing skiers.
Each day ended with Alex, Jon, and Danny lovingly caressing their Crop Dusters before tucking them into bed next to them. Just kidding. It was more a matter of dumping the skis in the gear room before killing dinner, and then Alex putting the hurt on Danny in a game of fooseball. It was an all around great time, more than contributing to the Epic Planks goal of putting our products to the ultimate test to make sure we’re providing the best quality product for your money. Get on some Crop Dusters this year and see why the guys in the ski movie industry are riding them.
Brian, Bill, and James