Cheap Flights

Wilderness Heliskiing Day - Reviews

Beautiful Lake Views

POWDERHOUNDS.COM
13/11/2015
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Month Visited:
    August
Lake views
Any day out heli skiing is amazing, although my 2nd experience with Wilderness Heliski (now Mt Cook Heliski) wasn’t quite as good as the first. I was put in a group with some lovely intermediate skiers (one of which was having a hard time on the crust), so we could only tackle low angle terrain in the Ben Ohaus (where the views were magnificent). The potential for mismatched groups is one disadvantage of this boutique operation, and we haven’t seen this to the same degree with the big NZ heli operators (it’s happened with another small operator though). Our first experience also had skiers of differing abilities, although conversely an intermediate skier had to battle along on steeper slopes.

The snow quality wasn’t as good as the lovely fluffy powder we had on our first trip, but this is New Zealand after all, so you have to take the awesome with the just good.

Overall, Mt Cook Heliski has some advantages over the Queenstown and Wanaka heli ski operators, largely due to the high elevation. See our Mt Cook Heliski review for our thoughts on the pros and cons and also see our heli ski ratings to see how we rate Mt Cook Heliski versus the other NZ heli ski outfits.

Ultimate adventure

Alex Reid
07/01/2013
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    36-50
This is skiing amongst New Zealand's best scenery. This is a true wilderness experience not to be missed

Alpine Guides - Wilderness Heli

Terry Bradley
19/08/2011
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Snowboarder
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50
I have been doing heli with Alpine Guides for about 8 years now and cannot say enough about them. Friendly, entertaining and very knowledgeable guides that will do everything possible to find you good snow and the level of riding you are seeking. That said, it is not for beginners or those without powder experience. The terrain is all above treeline with spectacular peaks, couloirs, chutes, bowls and heaps of features. The snow can be a bit finicky depending on the wind, but overall is good quality powder. Have yet to have a bad trip with them and highly recommend them!

Wilderness Heli as an Alternative to Ski the Tasman

Krissie
10/09/2010
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Intermediate
  • Rider Age
    18-35
These guys also run Ski the Tasman, which was the entire reason I trekked out to Mt. Cook on my trip to the South Island. I was disappointed to learn upon my arrival that they wouldn't run ski the Tasman without a minimum of 3 people, and I was the only one scheduled that day, so it was getting cancelled. They convinced me instead to go heliskiing.

I wasn't sure that I was a good enough skier to heli but they say if you're a solid blue skier, you can do it. So I did!

It was really an incredible experience. The scenery was beautiful, the snow was decent, and the runs were the perfect length for me. The guides and staff were extremely accommodating, they even made me a vegetarian lunch! I did spend the day skiing with people who were way better skiers and riders than I am, but it was nice to be challenged and it was great to meet the people from powderhounds.com!

A Wild Ride

POWDERHOUNDS.COM
28/08/2010
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50
Wilderness Heli Skiing at Mt Cook is one of the best heli ski operations in New Zealand. Their awesome terrain is not far from Mt Cook itself. The terrain offers spectacular vistas, has lots of glaciations, and the steepness is very conducive for advanced skiers and boarders. The snow quality is generally better in the Mt Cook area relative to Queenstown and Wanaka due to higher snowfalls, cool temperatures and higher elevations. Consequently the run lengths also tend to be longer here. The quality of the guiding is excellent and the boutique nature of the operation is also a plus.

As is typical of New Zealand heli skiing, there is a high frequency of down days, partly because there is no tree skiing to afford the opportunity to fly and ski in protected areas. However at Mt Cook the weather is particularly fickle so there is the risk of a stretch of no-fly days, and unfortunately there isn’t an abundance of alternative Mt Cook activities available.

Another potential con could be the snow quality. Even though the snow quality is excellent by NZ standards, the snow conditions can still be variable.

An additional factor that is typical of New Zealand heli skiing is the value. You’ll definitely want to do additional runs considering that they are cheap as chups!

For a detailed review and ratings of this operation, see our Wilderness Heli Ski review.