ALBERTA’S BEST CAT SKIING & RIDING
ENJOY AN EXCEPTIONAL BACK COUNTRY EXPERIENCE WITHOUT HAVING TO STRAY FAR FROM HOME
Castle’s Powder Stagecoach is one of only a handful of resort-based cat skiing operations in North America, located in the stunning South Canadian Rockies. Using a blend of lift and snow cat access, across more than 900 acres of terrain and some of the best snow in North America, our experience is as unique as it is amazing.
For the 2023-2024 season we’re continuing on with running one group per day – a maximum of 12 guests / day – providing our skiers / riders with more runs and exclusive access to our cat skiing terrain. We will also be tweaking our operational schedule, now moving to a Thursday – Monday schedule – listening to feedback from our guests, from past seasons, to better align our operations around weekends.
Freshly prepared, gourmet breakfast upon arrival
Full complement of avalanche safety gear (pack, shovel, probe, transceiver)
Fully guided cat skiing (minimum 5 runs) complete w/ avalanche safety equipment
To-go lunch w/ bottled beverage to enjoy during the day
Complimentary après-ski beverage
Apres-ski photo presentation w/ complimentary access to (digital) photos from the day
Check in the Barnaby Room (follow signage to the upstairs portion of our Day Lodge) where you’ll first enjoy a gourmet full hot breakfast followed by a safety briefing and the issuing avalanche kits.
Typically we’re getting ready to head out the door, to catch an early upload on Huckleberry, in order to meet our cat.
9:00 AM to 4:00 PM
After a short on-snow avalanche safety demo / scenario, we’re cat skiing! Each cat skiing lap consists of a ride on the Huckleberry Chairlift, a ride on the cat, and somewhere in the vicinity of 1800 – 2200 vertical feet of powder-licious skiing / riding!
Return to the Barnaby Room to share stories, review photos of your day, and enjoy a beverage on us!
Thursday – Monday (5 Days / Week)
First Day: December 28, 2023
Last Day: March 18. 2024
SINGLE SEAT BOOKINGS
|REGULAR RATE (DEC. 1 ONWARD)
PRIVATE CAT BOOKINGS
|REGULAR RATE (DEC. 1 ONWARD)
Off-Peak Season rates in effect from Dec. 28, 2023 – Jan. 22, 2024
Peak Season rates in effect from Jan. 25, 2024 – Mar. 18, 2024
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How do I make a reservation?
Do you offer deals or discounts?
- A 10% off discount is available to Castle Mountain Resort season pass holders and Wonders of Winter (WOW) Card holders. Pass / card holders should use / quote promo code “CMRCAT10” at time of booking.
- A 10% off discount is available to Lake Louise Ski Resort season pass holders and Lake Louise Plus Card holders. Pass / card holders should use / quote promo code “LLSRCAT10” at time of booking.
Card / pass holders must provide proof of pass / card ownership at time of check-in. Guests who are unable to provide proof of pass / card ownership will have their discount revoked and must pay any balance owing before beginning their day.
What are my options for private group rentals?
We offer the ability to rent a private cat, with the ability to host up 12 guests / day, on any of our regularly scheduled operational days – subject to availability of course (all 12 seats must be available).
In order to be eligible for group rates payment is required in one lump sum, one transaction by a group coordinator – no exception.
Can I buy a gift certificate?
Yes, you most definitely can! However, gift certificates carry with them some special considerations.
Once you’ve purchased a gift certificate it is completely non-refundable and is valid for a cat-ski seat only in the season you’ve purchased it for. Cat Ski Certificates will not be rolled over to subsequent seasons should they go unused.
Your certificate does not guarantee you a seat on any departure you wish. As only 12 seats are available for each date and seats are based on first-come-first-serve availability, we recommend selecting your preferred date as soon as possible. Please quote your certificate bar-code number upon booking.
What is the terrain like?
Wide open bowls, trees, gullies, wind lips; we’ve got it all! If you’ve skied or ridden Advanced or Expert terrain on the main mountains at Castle before, then you shouldn’t be worried about your skill level. Our cat skiing area is a bit mellower than areas such as Sheriff or the Chutes, in terms of pitch, but it’s often where you’ll find the best (and most) snow at the resort.
You’ll find no mandatory cliff drops or chutes within the cat-ski terrain which means that competent, advanced level skiers and above will have a great time. Experience skiing powder and variable, off-piste conditions is expected.
How many cats do you operate per day?
We operate one cat with one group consisting of up to 12 guests.
What does "lift assisted" mean?
We run a combination of chairlift and snow cat for our cat skiing operation. You start on the Huckleberry Chairlift, ride the lift to the top then jump on the cat to go even farther up onto the shoulder of Mount Haig. This gives us the opportunity to ride 1800 – 2200 vertical feet per run! Each run you return to the base area and ride Huckleberry lift to the top to catch the cat.
Do I need to purchase a lift ticket?
No! A Huckleberry Chair lift ticket is included as part of your experience, which you’ll receive when you arrive on the morning of your cat skiing day.
Do you have bathrooms in the cat skiing terrain?
There are no washroom facilities outside of our base area. However, we do come into the base area after every run, so there is an opportunity for a quick break if needed. Ask your hosts where the nearest bathroom is so you don’t miss out on any runs!
Do I need to bring my own avalanche safety equipment?
We supply all the avalanche gear you need and its included in the price. An Ortovox backpack, probe, shovel & transceiver will be waiting for you at check in. If you would like use your own equipment please bring it with you to check in with full batteries and show it to our hosts to approve use.
Should I rent fat skis?
Powder skis and boards generally make your day on the Powder Stagecoach easier and more fun. Powder skis / boards will help you “surf” through deep snow, riding on top and not sinking to the bottom.
Skis / boards can be pre-booked at the time of your booking and are provided by our onsite rental / retail shop owned and operated by Alpenland. In fact, pre-booking will save you some dough with a special rate of $40 / person plus GST (regular $50 / person).
For more information on exactly what skis / boards are available you can give CMR’s Alpenland shop a call at (403) 627-5389.
What should I bring?
Check the weather before you come to ensure you are prepared for the conditions – it never hurts to throw a variety of things in your car so you have it on hand. Remember, every run we make returns to the base area so, just because it doesn’t fit in your pack, doesn’t mean you won’t be able to access it during your day.
Good long underwear, warm gloves, goggles and a face mask are a must! We pack you a lunch but it is always good to bring a snack to keep your energy levels up!
Do you stop for lunch?
We don’t have a formal “lunch stop” as we’re aiming to ski / ride as many runs with you as possible, on your big day. We encourage our guests to enjoy their lunch, at their own pace, while riding up in the cat.
What is your cancellation policy?
Our cancellation policy is as follows:
90 + Days Notice –
- 100% refundable with no administrative charges
- Date changes permitted with no administrative charges
89 – 30 Days Notice –
- 100% refundable less a $99 administration charge per seat
- Date changes permitted with $99 administration charge per seat
Less than 30 Days Notice –
- Cancellations within 30 days are non-refundable
- In the event that you are unable to attend your option would be to transfer your seat to another person
- Written notice (email) is required of any changes along with complete contact information for the new guest.
- Date changes are not permitted
If the Powder Stagecoach is unable to run due to weather, or other unforeseen circumstances, a full refund will be provided.
How many runs should I expect? / Do you guarantee a certain number of runs?
There are a wide variety of factors that contribute to how many runs a group may get in. Factors such as the speed of fellow skiers / riders, weather conditions, and snow conditions all play a part in the day.
We guarantee a minimum of 5 runs / day but, more often than not, our groups are enjoying 6 to 8 laps of our cat-skiing terrain.
If your group falls short of 5 runs, a 20% refund will be offered for every run short of 5. For example, should your day be cut short after 3 runs, you would receive a refund in the amount of 40% of the original amount associated w/ your booking.
Should you choose to end your day early, on your own accord (illness / injury, late arrival, equipment malfunction, tiredness, etc), a refund will not be available.
What if I get tired during the day?
You are welcome to skip a run and have a break in our Day Lodge if it is needed. One of the great benefits of being resort based, you can grab a coffee, warm up in the lodge or just rest your muscles and catch the group on the next lap.
Will I have cell phone reception or wifi available?
We do not have cell reception in the base area, depending on your provider you may get a signal at the top of the Cat Skiing Terrain! Wi-Fi is available in the base area (at check in/end of day).
Is there a minimum age for cat skiing?
There is no minimum age restriction associated with our cat skiing operation. If your little ripper can ski powder and variable conditions, on advanced terrain, they’re all good!
Please keep in mind that all children under the age of 18 must have their waiver signed, on the morning of your cat skiing adventure, by a parent or legal guardian.
Should I tip my hosts?
Gratuities are not required but they are always appreciated. A gratuity is not included in the cost of cat skiing.
How many guests are required to remain operational for the day?
Castle Mountain’s Powder Stagecoach requires a minimum of 6 guests for the cat to operate for the day. Full refunds will be rewarded in the situation that a cat skiing day does not run due to the minimum amount of guests not being met.