The Great Northern Powder Guides Deliver

Claude Perreault

Snowcats are hailed as one of the most enjoyable and sociable means to revel in untouched powder in the backcountry. For many snow enthusiasts, the thrill of a snowcat powder day is a cherished experience.

The love affair with snowcats began for me in 1992, during my first snowcat trip to Fernie, and it’s a passion that has endured ever since. There’s something truly magical about carving your way through pristine powder in the backcountry with the aid of these remarkable machines.

While every day in untracked backcountry powder holds its allure, snowcats offer a unique set of advantages. Unlike helicopters, which can be noisy and demand a heightened focus on safety, snowcats provide a quieter, more dependable, and relaxed mode of transportation.

My most recent snowcat adventure took me to Great Northern Powder Guides in Montana, situated just an hour’s drive south of Fernie and just north of Whitefish. Accompanied by long-time Fernie ski buddies Claude Perreault and Scott Gilmet, we embarked on two fantastic days of catskiing alongside a delightful group from Colorado and Seattle.

The experience at Great Northern Powder Guides was nothing short of extraordinary. Ideal snow conditions, captivating terrain, and a laid-back staff contributed to an unforgettable time. The Colorado crew even brought along a fitting playlist, and we jammed in the cat and on the slopes, elevating the fun to new heights.

Notably, Great Northern excels not only in delivering an exceptional catskiing experience but also in crafting custom cabins that redefine comfort and camaraderie. These cabins feature plush leather captain seats, skylights to soak in the surroundings, disco lights to set the mood, and a superb sound system to enhance the experience.

Great Northern Powder Guides boasts access to ridges as high as 7500 feet, with the longest descents spanning up to 3788 feet, all within the vast expanse of over 20,000 acres in the remote Stillwater State Forest. The terrain caters to intermediates and seasoned shredders alike, offering an array of steeps and gladed areas to explore.

Scott Gilmet

On my next visit to Great Northern, I plan to organize a group to stay overnight in their yurt camp. This eliminates the need for daily commutes to and from the best terrain, providing an immersive mountain adventure and a truly unique experience. During our recent visit, we made daily stops at the camp for lunch and savored the cozy lounge and dining areas.

For an unforgettable and sociable snowcat journey, make sure to consider Great Northern Powder Guides. The combination of thrilling terrain, top-notch cabins, and a welcoming atmosphere promises a snowcat adventure like no other.

By Dan Savage