Alyeska, Alaska: What To Do While You're There - Ski Mag

Alyeska, Alaska: What To Do While You're There

When you think of skiing in Alaska, you might think about helicopters and film crews. But don't forget about Alyeska, one of the state's few ski areas. The mountain has received 714 inches of snow this winter—and counting. Here's what you'll do while you're there—from night skiing to dining on all-you-can-eat sourdough pancakes.
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This is a view of a region called the Iguana Backs. Valdez Heli-Ski Guides can you to this terrain, to ski 1,500-foot-long couloirs of creamy Chugach powder. I'm currently spending two weeks parked in an RV at Valdez Heli-Ski Guides with two of the best telemark skiers in the country—Paul Kimbrough and Jake Sakson, who recently first and second, respectively, in the Telemark Freeskiing World Championships, which was held at Alyeska, Alaska, last weekend. Also with us is in the RV is Jonah Howell, who is filming footage for Powderwhore Productions, a telemark-specific ski movie. During downtime in the RV, I asked Paul and Jake for some pointers on skiing steep terrain on telemark gear. Find out their tips and check out photos from our trip in the next few slides.

Valdez, Alaska

In 1993, ski legend Doug Coombs opened Alaska's first heli-ski operation in Valdez. Skiing Magazine's Megan Michelson is currently spending two weeks in an RV parked at Valdez Heli Ski Guides with two of the best telemark skiers in the country. Here are photos from their trip—along with pointers on how to ski Alaskan-style steeps.

The down time worked, and we headed off in generally good spirits toward our final objective. We made our advanced base camp at snow line, in the midst of what might vary well be the best trundling zone in the world. Although we couldn’t muster the energy to hike any further, we easily found enough energy to roll massive rocks for a solid hour before going to bed. Our final ski day lacked the trepidation of the other ski days—there wasn’t a sense of urgency and we made a couple of laps on generally mellow slopes. It had the feeling of a fun spring day at a podunk resort rather than another day on a month long odyssey. As we headed back down to the rafts, the skiing behind us, I was overcome with a sense of relief. The trip wasn’t done by any means, but I felt the hardest, most dangerous part of the trip was behind us.

Dream Trips: Alaska

What's your dream ski trip? Griffin Post, Drew Stoecklein, Todd Ligare, and Lars Chickering-Ayers attempt to ski and raft from a river's source to the sea in Alaska's Brooks Range.

A bit of a drive and a free ferry ride to Galena Bay, the Halcyon Hot Springs are the premiere extracurricular activity. With two pools, 100 and 105 degrees, it is the ideal place to spend a rest day.

What to do in Revelstoke Besides Ski Powder

Any resort that boasts 5,620 vertical feet is noteworthy; it’s hardly necessary to talk about activities outside of skiing. But fortunately, Revelstoke, British Columbia’s surroundings are equally impressive. Here is the to-do list of other things to check out after you’re done skiing powder in Revelstoke. —Molly Baker

Now is the right time to go to Jackson Hole. As in, this weekend. Read on for why and how.  Also, don't forget to enter to win a four-day trip for two to Jackson just by telling us your ski-related New Year's resolution.

Stop What You're Doing And Go to Jackson Hole, Now

Finally, winter is descending on Jackson Hole. It snowed 8 inches on Tuesday, another 3 the day after, a skiff on Thursday morning, and now the forecast calls for a foot by the weekend. In short, it's utterly, totally ON. And it's empty. According to a local patroller who asked not to be named, many Jackson locals were so impatient with the slow start that they've "given up." The mountain's marketing team is killing themselves to sell tickets and they're basically giving them away. Read on for more.

double chair

What do you love?

Yeah, we all love skiing. Obviously. That’s why we’re here. For the face shots and the glory and the self-congratulatory après stories. But it’s really the little things that make it.