Photos: Court Leve / Points North
|Terrain Accessed||2,000 + sq. miles|
|Annual Snowfall||1,000 inches|
|Lodging on Site||Yes|
|Single Heli Drops||Yes|
|Heli Types||A Star + Single Chairlift|
|Maximum Vertical||4,000 vertical feet|
|Closest Airport||CKU, 15 min|
CHANCES ARE if you’ve ever been involved in a conversation about heli-skiing, you’ve heard the name Points North thrown around. Kevin and Jessica Quinn, owners and operators of Alaska-based Points North Heli-Adventures (PNH), pride themselves on that word-of-mouth reputation.
“Guests are so fired up on what they experience. They go home and tell their friends and just exude enthusiasm. That passion spreads and they end up bringing their friends in the future,” Quinn explains. “I’m a big believer that you’re only as good as your word-of-mouth.”
The hearsay is warranted. PNH operates in the southern Chugach Range and is the only heli service in the area; guests may rest assured no other groups will impede on their fun. And that fun comes in all shapes and sizes. The operation services over 2,000 square miles of untouched Alaskan goodness with a wide variety of terrain that suits beginner, intermediate and expert skiers.
“You can come and push your own boundaries as far as you want to push them, within our safety parameters,” Quinn explains. “Then on the other side of the coin, you can go and ski with your 80-year-old grandfather and have a great time because there is terrain for him, as well. There are so many opportunities for everyone.”
From incredibly steep, deep spine lines and hair-raising couloirs to mellow runs on expansive pow-covered glaciers, the skiing options in the southern Chugach cater to all, indeed. The PNH experience doesn’t end when the skiing’s over for the day, though. Consider the all-inclusive seven-day package that includes incredible food, comfortable lodging, essential equipment and transportation throughout the week. At the operation’s lodge—located on the Orca Inlet of Prince William Sound—you’ll find free Wi-Fi, a sauna, massages, on-site laundry, etc. And in the off-hand chance that the helicopters can’t fly because crazy-heavy snow is nuking upon the peaks, guests can get their skiing fix at the nearby Mt. Eyak ski hill.
Additionally, PNH is a member of US Heli-Ski Association which is recognized for excellence in safety and standards within the industry. So next time you’re chatting it up with your buddies or a stranger on the chairlift and “Points North” comes up, listen closely and take notes—maybe you’ll be the next one to have the time of your life on the other side of the Chugach.