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Winter season 2016/2017
December 16, 2016 to Easter mondat April 17, 2017

The following booking conditions apply: Minimum lenght of stay: 3 night. Arrival and departure: daily
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Leadville North
Feels like: 19°F
Wind: 2mph E
Humidity: 62%
Pressure: 30.16"Hg
UV index: 0
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Snowcat Skiing

chicago ridge

snowcat skiing

Chicago Ridge Snowcat Tours is operated by Ski Cooper on 2600 acres of open powder bowls, glades and timber in the San Isabel and White River National Forests. This is an area roughly the size of Vail’s Back Bowls, with similar length, pitch and vertical.

Guests soak in spectacular scenery as we climb along the Continental Divide with dozens of Colorado’s highest peaks in our view – a beautiful scene unlike any we’ve seen elsewhere. We’ll take you as high as 12,850 feet. The slopes vary from 3,000 to 10,000 feet in length with vertical drops up to 2,000 feet per run. Check out the details below.

Due to the current COVID-19 Pandemic, snowcat skiing will be suspended for the 2020-21 season. We are disappointed that social distancing measures cannot be met. We look forward to the return of snowcat skiing for the 2021-22 season when the situation improves.

CRST utilizes a pair of Bombardier snowcats with plush enclosed cabins to transport guests into our vast permit area. Experienced guides, each trained and certified in emergency medical care and snow safety, accompany every tour. Our guides are intimately familiar with the nuances of our terrain, and so are able to seek out and lead tours into the best snow available, all while providing a unique experience customized to best suit each tour group. Many of our guests have become friends, returning year after year. Much like historic and legendary Ski Cooper, CRST refrains from marketing hype and creating false expectations. We operate under a simple philosophy: deliver the goods, and leave our guests with a smile and a singular desire – to do it again. And again.

Group of people outside a snowcat

Tours are full day experiences. They includes a robust hot lunch in our backcountry yurt, use of individual rescue beacons & powder skis or boards (if desired), and a traditional après ski with choice microbrews and snacks. Advance reservations are required; a minimum of 5 guests are needed to confirm a tour launch. We will work to match single guests, couples and groups of less than 5 to meet the required launch minimum. A private tour can be assured by “buying out the cat”. Private tours may be from 1-12 guests. Guests are asked to arrive at the Ski Cooper base lodge by 8:00 in order to make a scheduled departure of 8:45. A hearty, reasonably priced breakfast is available beginning at 7:30 AM. After an average of 8-12 runs in untracked snow, we return to the base lodge tired and happy at approximately 3:30 PM.

do I need to be

an expert?

snowboarder on Chicago Ridge

A strong advanced skier or expert rider can have a great time with us. Our snow is unconsolidated, ungroomed and deep! Suitable skiing / riding ability is important to ensure an enjoyable experience for everyone. Although there are options available while on tour if your ability is less than what is needed to safely and happily negotiate the terrain, we cannot offer refunds. Our snow exists in its natural state; although this often means long lines of blower pow, it also means that weather ultimately controls snow quality and terrain choices. We continually monitor and evaluate snow conditions, and prior to a tour departure, we actively converse with our guests to discuss options such as rescheduling or cancelling when we determine conditions are likely to be disappointing. We feel this is the best way to ensure that our best advertisers – our guests – have an epic, enjoyable experience they can’t wait to tell everyone about, and repeat.