Terrace’s Northern Escape and Shames

My trip to Terrace was more than getting together with my ski buddy, Owen. It was a celebration of his surviving a 19 minute avalanche burial under a meter of snow in Chile followed by a quadruple bypass heart surgery the day after skiing powder at Island Lake Lodge. This happened all in a few months and if you add up the probability of surviving either experience, he should be dead. He was far from dead, with more blood flowing in his veins and a year of rehab, Owen was skiing like a teenager!

I have many memories of endless powder runs from my Whistler days in the 80’s and Fernie in the early 90’s. Today’s crowds and weak snow pack leave limited terrain that is skied out quickly. Terrace brought those old powder memories to the surface and then some. The snow pack in Terrace has not suffered a decade of drought as the Southern BC resorts. Every year Terrace receives more than 30 meters of powder!

Northern Escape has the largest Alpine powder runs that I’ve experienced anywhere, awesome staff and high powered agile helicopters that fly with groups of five. As Warren always said, “If you don’t heli-ski this year you’ll be another year older when you do”!

Here a a few shots that best describe our time at Northern Escape:

And when the weather was bad and the helicopters could not fly we drove to Shames and rode the lifts, both of them in fact! We traversed a few meters to steep untracked lines of powder. Shames is from the past complete with Atco trailers a smelly bar. I loved the experience. It reminded me of skiing Crabbe Mountain outside my home town of Fredericton New Brunswick. The bartender was from Edmonston NB and she had worked in a strip joint on the Quebec side that Owen and I had visited as UNB students on route to ski adventures at Mont St Anne and Le Massif. Small world.

As I write this Owen is in Japan skiing the forbidden forest. Life is fun, ski more!!

Photos by fellow skier Al Charest.