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A Great Experience: Cat Skiing at Castle Mountain

Skiing with no frills, that's what Castle Mountain ski resort in Alberta in the Canadian Rocky Mountains is known for. If you want to enjoy untouched snow, stunning nature, and true hospitality in a down-to-earth atmosphere, this is the place to go. A special highlight you shouldn't miss while you're here: cat skiing on Haig Mountain!

A Truly Authentic Resort

Castle Mountain ski resort is run by local ski enthusiasts.
© Skigebiete-Test/k.huber Castle Mountain ski resort is run by local ski enthusiasts.

The ski resort of Castle Mountain lies idyllically amidst the Canadian Rocky Mountains. Only 270 km (approx. 168 miles) south of Calgary, at the south-western corner of the province of Alberta, skiers find a world of puristic skiing with no frills, but lots of charm. The resort is not run by a major lift company, but by local ski enthusiasts – a resort run by skiers for skiers. Castle Mountain boasts challenging terrain, dry powder, and an impressive landscape.

Untouched Nature

You can book your accommodation at a quaint wooden cottage.
© Skigebiete-Test/k.huber You can book your accommodation at a quaint wooden cottage.

If skiing means to you getting a sheltered escalator from the car park to the high speed chair lift with heated seats and canopy in order to ski down perfectly groomed slopes, and enjoy a meal at a 5-star restaurant afterwards, you should think twice about going to Castle Mountain. If, however, you want to enjoy untouched snow amidst the solitary nature, and end your day at a cosy pub, you will feel right at home at Castle Mountain. Part of its charm are the many quaint wooden cottages you can book to stay.

Challenging Runs

Advanced skiers will enjoy the demanding runs off the groomed pistes.
© Jack O'Grady   Advanced skiers will enjoy the demanding runs off the groomed pistes.

While there is a ski school and a small beginners' area near the valley, large parts of the resort are not suited for skiing novices. More advanced skiers, on the other hand, are sure to have fun on the numerous steep and demanding runs. Cat skiing, where you get a ride up Haig Mountain with a snowcat, is a real highlight here. From there, you dive into countless deep-snow runs and tree runs – a spectacular experience.

Cat Skiing vs. Heli-Skiing

A snowcat gives you a ride into remote terrain for the cat skiing.
© Patrick Wimmer   A snowcat gives you a ride into remote terrain for the cat skiing.

Heli-skiing, that is, having a helicopter fly you to the top of a mountain in order to ski down through untouched grounds, is widely known among skiers. Cat skiing, by contrast, is not something many Europeans are familiar with yet. However, apart the helicopter flight, cat skiing is in no way inferior to heli-skiing. Quite on the contrary, cat skiing actually as a number of advantages: considerably lower cost, less time exposure, and thus usually more runs per day, to name but a few.

Cat Skiing at Castle Mountain

Cat skiing at Castle Mountain is an experience you really shouldn't miss. We had a whole of 8 (!) deep-snow runs through stunning terrain on our cat skiing day. There was everything, from completely empty space to fun tree runs and steep slopes with chest-deep powder – a dream come true, and worth every penny.

Before the cat skiing starts, participants receive important avalanche training.
© Jack O'Grady   Before the cat skiing starts, participants receive important avalanche training.

Special compliments must go to the organisation and professionalism of the cat skiing team at Castle Mountain here. The equipment we received was state-of-the-art, the avalanche training in theory and practice was not only very profound, but entertaining also, and the highly experienced guides provided the necessary safety as well as lots of fun on the mountain.

Depending on size and strength of the group, cat skiing in Castle Mountain includes between 5 and 8 deep-snow runs. Moreover, a photographer takes great souvenir pictures of all participants. In conclusion, we highly recommend cat skiing to everyone who finds themself in the area.

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Skigebiete-Test beim Cat Skiing in... | 01:00
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