FAQ

I want to book! What happens from here?

Contact us regarding the program you would like to choose, and the dates that you would like to ski. We will get back to you and confirm that the program is right for you and/or your group, and finalise the details.

What gear do I need?

The following is a recommended equiment list:

  • Touring skis or split board
  • Climbing skins
  • Backpack (30-60lt depending on trip length)
  • Beacon
  • Probe
  • Shovel
  • Goggle
  • Sunglasses
  • Neck Gaitor
  • Hat
  • Riding Gloves
  • Thin Hiking Gloves
  • Water Bottle and/or Thermos (at least 1L total capacity)
  • Small Insulated Jacket
  • Waterproof pants and jacket
  • Sunsceen and Lip Balm
  • Camera
  • Lunch and snacks

Where can I rent my equipment?

Backcountry rental gear can be rented from Excess Backcountry, located in Whistler Village (near the Crystal Lodge). This is where our guides will meet you to start our day. Please contact us if you have any quiestions regarding the rental process or what to rent.

How many people can come?

We specialize in private individuals and small groups. Depending on the tour, group sizes will be a maximum of 3 and 4.

Am I good enough?

Crystalline Backcountry Guides has tours for people of all abilities. Within each tour we will customize the day to suit your needs, ability, and fitness level. You should be able to ride all blue runs and easy black runs in order to get the most out of your days in the backcountry, If you are still aspiring to do this you may like to contact us regarding a lesson done through the Whistler Blackcomb Ski School.

Do I need special boots?

Ski touring can be undertaken without specific ski touring boots. Some binding models are compatible with your normal boots you would use to ride the ski resort. We recommend using your own boots for day trips out of Whistler Blackcomb. For longer trips or tours, you may wish to rent ski touring boots which have a walk mode and can be more comfortable on the uphill.

What if the weather or avalanche conditions are not good?

We will be able to take you to the backcountry on almost all days throughout the ski season. There is always be something fun to ride in the backcountry, that is the beauty of it! For our tours leaving from Whistler Blackcomb we are reliant on ski patrol finishing avalanche control in the resort, before they open lifts to access terrain outside of the ski resort. Once these lifts are open it is game on!
We will do our best to advise you if we do not think conditions are not great for backcountry skiing, to help ensure you get what you pay for…………great guiding and even better skiing.

What should I wear?

The gear you use for resort riding will do the job. We recommend bringing some spare gloves, or thinner gloves for hiking, and a spare small insulated jacket. Layering your clothes works best. As you get hot going uphill you can take these layers off.
Spare socks and underwear are definitely recommended for our overnight tours. As are a down jacket and some hut footwear (booties).

Can I use my own pack?

Yes. most backpacks will work for travelling in the backcountry. Guests will find a ski specific pack an obvious benefit though as they allow for a comfortable feel, and allow for skis to be carried on your back if necessary.

Can I use my own equipment?

Yes. However, we require that your ski set up have touring capability and recommend that your skis are at least 90mm underfoot. If you are snowboarding, snowshoers are welcome. But we recommend the use of splitboards because of their greater efficiency when travelling in the backcountry.