Seeking a more memorable ski adventure? 5 SunGod ambassadors share their top spots...
All hail spring and the wealth of opportunity she brings, notably the promise of longer days ready to be filled with exploration - But with the crowds swarming the resorts it can be hard to know where to go to escape civilisation because after all, isn’t there more to skiing than standing in lift queues? We asked 5 ambassadors to share their favourite deserted ski spots which will whisk you away to adventures far away from the holiday crowds…
1. Skiing outside the lines in Squamish, BC
Recommended by: Samantha Schonewille, a rock climber, trail runner and backcountry skier
"My home and favourite ski destination is Squamish, BC but rather than head to the resort, I spend my weekends in the backcountry where the powder is pristine, and the views are unspoiled. One of my favourite backyard touring destinations is Garibaldi Provincial Park. It's a comfortable skin up a moderate slope and if you're willing to put the work in you can always find untouched powder and plenty of fun terrain. There's something very satisfying about skinning uphill and I always enjoy touring to reach the top of my ski line."
2. Embrace the wilderness in Gudauri, Georgia
Reccommended by: Yulia Zayko, freeride skier
"For me, Gudauri is magnificent! Rich with gorges, waterfalls and glaciers, there is nowhere quite like it. Grab a guide and escape into the wilderness, taking the time to stop and embrace the breathtakingly beautiful landscape. A 2 to 3 hour ski tour will get you to the deepest snow of your life. If it’s somewhere totally unique you are looking to adventure, then Gudauri is the perfect place."
3. Think outside the box in Arolla, Switzerland
Recommended by: Elias Henderson, freeride skier
"Switzerland offers so much more than big luxury ski resorts. Leave other people to mob the bigger resorts and head to somewhere smaller, like Arolla. You may have to lower your standards in some respects but in Arolla, the skiing standards are sky high. The lifts will carry you to over 3,000 metres at which point you can get stuck in because Arolla is a ski touring paradise! Hire a guide and scale the glacier or make the best of the incredibly playful terrain, the only limit is your imagination! This is only one of many great and lesser known resorts around Switzerland if you dare to take the step outside your comfort zone… "
4. Braving the backcountry in Breckenridge, US
Recommended by: James Poss, freeskier and entrepreneur
"Breckenridge has so much more to offer than the resort skiing it is famed for! The day we escaped into the Breckenridge backcountry is a day I will always remember. We pulled up to an empty trail head just after sunrise, with high spirits and no other humans in sight, our crew set off. A couple of hours later we emerged from the treeline to find a great little zone that we lapped for the rest of the day. It wasn't close to the steepest or most difficult terrain I have skied, but the snow was great, the vibes were better and we will all remember it as one of the best days of the season."
5. Sliding into the Southern Hemisphere in Falls Creek, Australia
Recommended by: Hannah Strong , skier, personal trainer, journalist and model
"Normally playing second fiddle to its Kiwi neighbour, the Aussie alps, as many Aussies would agree, are home to a grossly underrated winter playground. Falls Creek is a great place to head for some back country fun - For those seeking more of a challenge, head to Mount Bogong where you’ll need some good Australian backcountry know-how and good skiing ability. For the ultimate Bogong experience, hire a guide and prepare for a multi day trip incorporating tent camping and overnight stays in the various alpine huts located throughout the area. Proper planning is essential and all relevant safety precautions should be taken as with any backcountry ski tour!"
It's great to know that there are still places to ski and snowboard far away from the masses, even in the larger resorts! Whether you're craving a more unique backcountry adventure or searching for a more unusual, less crowded resort to ski in, we hope this has given you some food for thought because we've said it before and we'll say it again: There's more to skiing than standing in lift lines!