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Sunday, February 27, 2005

Powder Skiing in the Canadian Rocky Mountain alpine
Powder skiing tracks on the Windlip . At the top, the cat road cuts across the hill, at the base of the rock, to give access to the top of Jo-Pal . The blowhole, after which the Windlip is named, is hidden by the ridge in the foreground. The elevation at the top of the Windlip is almost 10,000 ft. This is some of the highest cat skiing terrain in Canada.

Thanks to Kelly Kerr for another bundle of Chatter photos.

Friday, February 25, 2005

Vertebrae Lodge at Chatter Creek Cat Skiing
Scenes from Vertebrae Lodge as Chatter Creek guests relax after a day of cat skiing. For views around the lodge, look at our photo gallery, " Lodge Life at Chatter Creek ". and our collection of candid "people shots" called " Happy Campers at Chatter Creek". Vertebrae lodge is a warm and friendly place where it is easy to relax and meet new friends.

To understand what cat skiing is all about, look at our illustrated "Cat Skiing Articles". Scroll down this page to see our recent postings to the Chatter News.

Powder Skiing on the Vertebrae Glacier
It's been a while since the Chatter News has published a recent photo from the Vertebrae Glacier. This one was taken by Dave harvey on Jan 30. The background is the twisted strata of the Sullivan Fault. Take a look at our photo gallery, " Glacier Skiing at Chatter Creek " for many more views from this spectacular location, high in the Canadian Rocky Mountains.

This is a favorite destination among Chatter Creek cat skiing guests. It's east-facing slope protects the snow from the sun and the powder skiing is usually very good.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Powder Skiing at Chatter Creek
Mellow cat skiing at Chatter Creek. The cat and the group awaits. Time for the photographer to get moving. Thanks to Marty Wagman for this photo in South Park.

Chatter Creek has 130 sq. km of varied terrain from mellow to steep, from open alpine to trees. Use the links at the top of the Chatter News to view a selection of the Chatter Creek terrain. Not all of the major areas are represented, but the Chatter News includes the most frequented powder skiing areas.

Ski Photography by John Dougall
Two ladies cat skiing, one with thirty-five years more experience than the other and with two knee braces. Photographer John Dougall brings out the best in everyone. See our photo gallery, " Ski Photography by John Dougall ". A photo by John is reason enough for a cat skiing trip to Chatter Creek! The great powder skiing is just an added bonus!

Note: John does take days off, so make sure ahead of time that he is there to spend time with your group. Don't be disappointed!

A quotation from a letter from the lady on the right to her brother:
".....chatter was unbelievable. i never thought skiing could be like that - i never thought i could possibly enjoy skiing so much. seriously. and i definitely found my skiing niche - i rule the powder. i would have enjoyed racing much more if our courses had been up there."

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Cat Skiing at Chatter Creek
Cat skiing at Chatter Creek offers powder skiing on a wide variety of terrain. Chatter Creek offers the one of the largest areas of glacier skiing in North America. There are also many large alpine bowls and open slopes like this example and the East Ridge, the Lodge Ridge and other zones offer many tree skiing options.

Photo credit to Marty Wagman. Marty is about to publish an article about Chatter Creek in the Enterprise Bulletin of Collingwood, Ontario

Click on any image to enlarge it, use the browser's "Back" button to return to the Chatter News.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Cat Skiing at Chatter Creek
Upper Jo-Pal, looking down behind the East Ridge. The elevation here is over 9000 ft. Jo-Pal turns to the right, below this initial pitch, to drop to the top of Megahooped. Thanks to John Toelle for sending the Chatter News some of his favorite shots from his February tour at Chatter Creek. Take a look at our list of favorite photos to see more if John's photos.

Click on any Chatter News image to enlarge it. Use the "Back' button to return to the Chatter News.

Photograpy by John Dougall, "court photographer" at Chatter Creek. Perhaps someone can name this peak and the point from which the photo was taken. Please leave a comment.

Take a look at the Chatter News photo gallery, "Ski Photography by John Dougall" for more examples of John's work photographing Chatter Creek clients as they go powder skiing.

Pretty soon, people will be going cat skiing at Chatter Creek just to get a photo of themselves taken by John. He makes you look like a pro!

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Powder Skiing on the East Ridge
A Chatter Creek guide powder skiing in the Enchanted Forest, an old burn on the East Ridge. Thanks to Jim Megson and Ryan Jones and their group for this photo for the Chatter News. This shot dates from the cold snap in early January, 2005. It's one of our Favorites.

Who can identify the skier? Please leave a comment.

Powder Skiing at Chatter Creek
Powder skiing on Megahooped. After the long run down Jo-Pal, the powder skiing goes on and on. The whole hillside drops almost 3000 vertical ft. from the top of Jo-Pal and the Windlip, to the bottom of Megahooped and Bouncing Chuckles. Thanks to Crichton for this "long shot" of his Dad, Jamie.

For more views of this area, see the Chatter News photo gallery called, "The Road to Vertebrae Glacier"

Click on any Chatter News image to enlarge it. Use the browser's "Back" button to return to the Chatter News.

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Chatter Creek cat skiing group from Feb 1-4 2005. Thanks for sending your photos to the Chatter News. Look for more on our Happy Campers photo gallery.

Click on the image to enlarge it. Use the "Back' button to return to the Chatter News.

Part of the adventure of cat skiing at Chatter Creek is getting there. Sometimes winter road closures present an unwelcome obstacle but more often the highlights of the trip are the magnificent mountain scenery and occassional sightings of wildlife. Here are some foraging Mountain Sheep. This looks like a group of ewes. Thanks to the Feb 1-4 tour.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Chatter News Cat Skiing Photos
Dewar's Bowl on the east side of upper Lodge Ridge. This slope goes on and on, with a very even pitch. It is steeper than it appears in the photo.
Use the link above to view our Lodge Ridge photo gallery or use the links at the top of the page to view other Chatter News photo galleries. Each Chatter News gallery relates to a different aspect of cat skiing or lodge life at Chatter Creek.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Powder Skiing on Mummy's Run
Our guides check out another great slope during our end-January cat skiing tour at Chatter Creek. Four days of great powder skiing with good consistent snow on all aspects. Not super-deep but plenty deep enough to make some very Happy Campers. We are on Mommy's Run, looking down on the Megahooped Trees. Photo credit to Crichton Pike, skier extraordinaire.

The Chatter News welcomes photos from all Chatter Creek skiers and riders. Contact the Chatter Editor.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Mountain Lodges at Chatter Creek
A view of the Chatter Creek cat skiing lodges from the Home Run on Lodge Ridge. From the left, the first building is the woodshed with the outdoor furnace. Next, the low building is a workshop and one-time staff bunkhouse. The two lower roofs cover Vertebrae lodge with it's 12 bedrooms for 24 guests on the left and the common spaces on the right. The highest roof covers Solitude lodge with 6 guest bedrooms and two floors of staff quarters. The small building to the right of Solitude lodge is a generator shed and the original Spruce lodge (the "Spruce Goose") can be seen in the woods to the far right. This shot was taken early in the season on a staff ski day.

Click on any Chatter News image to enlarge it, use the "Back" button on the browser to return to the Chatter News.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Powder Skiing at Chatter Creek
Did somebody loose this? Lead guide Herb Bleuer motors in with a misplaced artifact, the dreaded "pink purse". There must be a story here! On a foggy day, the best place to ski is right on Herb's tail. The guy has radar and picks amazing lines. Herb has almost 35 years of powder skiing experience. Thanks to Ian Cumming for his contributions to the Chatter News.

Chatter Creek skiers and riders, please send us your best photos from your Chatter Creek cat skiing tours. If you use Kodak's Ofoto site or the Webshot's great site to display your photos, please send us the URL so we might share your gems with the Chatter News audience. Email us at We look forward to hearing from you.

Note: some Chatter groups share a Webshots or Ofoto free account so that all group members can independently upload their cat skiing photos to the common account. Each member can have his own album. See

Let us set up a "Happy Campers" collage for your group. Have a presence on the Chatter News.

Glacier Skiing at Chatter Creek
Tracks on Vertebrae Glacier. Jan 30, 2005. Thanks to Crichton Pike. See the photo gallery, "Glacier Skiing at Chatter Creek", for all of our photography of and from the Vertebrae glacier.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

The Heli Planet Web site has a new and detailed description of backcoutry powder skiing at Chatter Creek Snowcat Skiing and a client report from a late-January trip to Chatter Creek. Have a look!

Mountain Lodges at Chatter Creek
The lodges at Chatter Creek. In five years, Chatter Creek has become one of the largest snowcat skiing operations. It's Vertebrae and Solitude lodges provide over 18,000 sq.ft. of living space. Its three late-model Bombardier snowcats transport 36 skiers and snowboarders over a 130 km. tenure which offers one of the most varied powder skiing experiences in the snowcat skiing business.

Extending between the elevations of about 4900 ft and almost 10,000 ft. the huge tenure includes two glaciers, many alpine bowls and open slopes, and great forested ridges with open glades, old burns and large cut blocks. An application is in progress to increase the tenure by over 90 sq km.

In almost 10 visits to Chatter Creek over 5 years, your Chatter Editor has yet to ski some of the major areas of the Chatter Creek tenure. MCO and South Park are still to be "discovered" and it was only this year that we got to explore Dewar's Bowl and other alpine slopes of the Chatter Creek watershed. The place goes on and on!

For a better view of the lodges, look at "Lodge Life at Chatter Creek"

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Cat Skiing Terrain at Chatter Creek
The view from upper Lodge Ridge northwest over the Chatter glacier towards the "worlds largest halfpipe", which is located in the Kitchen Range of the Rocky Mountains. A cat road can be seen far below. These slopes, including Dewar's Bowl, form the headwaters of Chatter Creek and provide many great powder skiing lines.

Click on any Chatter News image to enlarge it. Use the browser's "Back" button to return to the Chatter News.

Powder Skiing Terrain at Chatter Creek
Near the Keyhole, at almost 10,000 ft elevation, looking down on lower Jo-Pal. Wonderland lies below the knob. Far below, the top of the Megahooped trees can be seen and, in the middle of the photo, lower Lodge Ridge. The Clamshell lies hidden beneath the clouds, on the furthest ridge. Here is the opposing view of this slope from Lodge Ridge.

Lodge Life at Chatter Creek
Chatter Creek guests and staff share a friendly shot ski. One, two, three ..........

Lodge Life at Chatter Creek
A Pine martin on the rear landing at Vertebrae lodge. These varmints are plentiful around the lodge and sometimes in the attic spaces. Here's an earlier photo of Dale with one of his pesky neighbors.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Cat Skiing Terrain on Lodge Ridge
Dewar's Bowl and the Chatter Creek watershed. Terrain that just keeps giving and giving. Huge alpine slopes and some very pleasant tree skiing. Lots of variety here. Look at our "Skiing Lodge Ridge" gallery for more photos of cat skiing in this productive area.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Powder Skiing terrain at Chatter Creek
The entry to Jo-Pal viewed from the top of the Windlip. Photo taken Jan 29 by Dave Harvey. Vertebrae and Solitude lodges are almost 4500 ft. below this point. Cat skiing at it's best!

Click on any Chatter News image to enlarge it and use the browser's "Back" button to return to the Chatter News.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Alpine Terrain at Chatter Creek
The valley of the Chatter glacier (the Chatter Creek watershed). Lodge Ridge and Dewar's Bowl are out of the picture to the right.

The Chatter glacier is relatively flat, but the east side of the valley (the west side of upper Lodge Ridge) has wonderful alpine terrain and also offers some nice tree skiing. There are days and days of cat skiing in this area in good snow conditions. Photo by Ian Cumming.

See also the Vertebrae glacier, the site of most of the glacier skiing at Chatter Creek.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

What is cat skiing????      See our Cat Skiing Articles to find out.

"Snowcat Skiing", "Cat Skiing", "Snow Cat Skiing", "Sno-cat skiing", it all means the same thing - easy access to great powder skiing in remote backcoutry wilderness! Our illustrated Chatter News Cat Skiing Articles tell the story. It's all part of the Chatter News.

Powder Skiing at Chatter Creek
Mellow skiing on the "golf course", on the way down from Spruce Pass. Lodge Ridge rises on the left, Wonderland and Megahooped on the right. A great place to get one's ski legs at the start of a Chatter Creek cat skiing tour. A shot from our Jan 28 tour. Send your Chatter Creek photos to the Chatter News.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Snow Update from Chatter Creek

Hip-deep powder and cooler temperatures. More great powder skiing at Chatter Creek!

Please note that the Chatter News does not attempt to provide regular weather reports. Look at the Chatter Creek Web site for lodge weather reports and the Golden forecast. In addition, our Information for Skiers and Boarders Web site provides links to a number of Web sites providing weather reports for Golden and Western Canada.

In our five years of experience at Chatter Creek, we have found that conditions at the lodge and in Golden are usually quite different. Chatter Creek usually gets quite a bit more snow than Golden and Kicking Horse Resort. In periods of "difficult" weather conditions, the standard weather forecasting cannot be counted on to predict conditions at Chatter Creek. If in doubt, call Chatter Creek for an update.

Friday, February 04, 2005

Fresh Snow at Chatter Creek

It snowed 20 cm at the Lodge last night and more is forecasted for tonight. This should do wonders for the lower elevations that were badly rain-crusted 10-14 days ago. Powder skiing in the Chatter Creek alpine has been excellent, with avalanche risk significantly diminished. A week ago, there had been some fresh snow on the rain crust on the East Ridge, but not enough for safe skiing. This new snowfall will help the tree skiing on the East Ridge and the lower Lodge Ridge. The tree skiing on the upper Lodge Ridge (below Dewars Bowl in the Chatter Creek watershed) was good a week ago and this new snow will add to that. It looks like things may be getting back to normal.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Photos from Jan 28 to Feb 1 2005

Powder Skiing at Chatter Creek
John Dougall catches Chris Underwood skiing the Chatter Creek powder (Jan 28 to Feb 1). Click for more Ski Photography by John Dougall.    Thanks for the photos, Chris. I like your "Steep and Deep" caption. It fits!

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Powder Skiing at Chatter Creek
January 28 to Feb 1 2005. Four days of great powder skiing at Chatter Creek. Click for five more recent photos from Chatter Creek. Thanks to Dave Harvey for these early photo releases to the Chatter News.

Cat Skiing Terrain at Chatter Creek
Dewers Bowl on the west side of upper Lodge Ridge, in the Chatter Creek watershed. This bowl and the Chatter glacier has provided many days of excellent powder skiing after rain affected lower elevations.

Ski Photography by John Dougall
Chatter Creek has engaged the professional services of photographer John Dougall . John has an extensive portfolio of mountain, skiing and snowboarding photography for a variety of clients. Johns skis with Chatter Creek clients taking high quality action photos. John makes anyone look good. This photo was taken on Jan 30, 2005, while many BC ski areas struggled with warm temperatures and poor conditions.

Ski Photography by John Dougall
Photographer John Dougall catches Sonja and Erin enjoying great powder skiing at Chatter Creek on Jan 30, 2005. This was Erin's first experience with backcountry powder skiing. Her backpack is the dreaded "Pink Purse". Sonja hopes her 40 yr old son might join her one day.

To continue the report of the prior post, our last day was overcast, but permitted good visibility for good skiing in the Megahooped trees and a full-on top-to-bottom run in Wonderland. We finished the day with a great run on Mummies Run on the northeast side of the Lodge Ridge (opposite the Megahooped trees). Another group had more good skiing in Dewars Bowl, a very productive area.

The 4-day cat skiing tour was a great success, enjoyed by everyone. Herb and Josh, the new guides we met this tour were first rate. The powder skiing was marvellous. There was some good tree skiing on the upper Lodge Ridge, but other than that, nearly all of our skiing was in the alpine. Snow stability was good, although we were careful to stay away from exposed slopes. Except for one experimental run on the East Ridge and another on lower Lodge Ridge, we had great snow everywhere we skied and fresh tracks every run. Those in the other snowcats reported similarly great powder skiing. Another "primo" cat skiing tour at Chatter Creek!

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

January Cat Skiing Archive

End of the Febrary cat Skiing posts.
Click here to see all of the January posts.
Click here to see the most recent posts.