Big Red Cats

Overall Rating

Big Red Cats

Big Red Cats4.6/523
Big Red Cats4.6 out of 5 based on 23 reviews

Big Red Cats

Overall Rating

Big Red Cats4.6/523
Big Red Cats4.6 out of 5 based on 23 reviews

Big Red Cats

Like other cat skiing BC, Big Red Cats offers paradise for powder hounds. Big Red Cat Skiing serves up freshies galore! If you’re planning a ski trip to Red Mountain or nearby Whitewater near Nelson, you should definitely add cat skiing to your itinerary. Or the lure of riding fresh tracks all day should make cat skiing your primary reason to head to Rossland!

With access to eight mountains and over 600 runs on 19,300 acres (7,810 hectares), Big Red Cats has plenty of cat skiing terrain to choose from so you definitely won't get bored! Add to this, 5 well decked out snowcats and this makes Big Red Cats one of the largest cat ski operations in the world!

Big Red Cat Skiing Packages

Big Red Cats provide the option of one day trips, so if your time and/or budget are limited, you don't have to miss out on the joy that is cat skiing. However it is likely that after one day of cat skiing you’ll only want to do more, so you might want to pre-book one of the multi-day packages.

One of the major benefits of packages with Big Red Cats is that you can choose from a range of Red Mountain accommodation options that range from budget to luxurious.

More Reasons To Go Snowcat Skiing

With Big Red Cats Cat skiing anywhere in BC Canada is pretty good, but Big Red Cats has some elements that make it distinctive.

Big Red Cats is the only BC cat skiing outfit to offer separate trips for different ability levels (strong intermediate, advanced, expert, uber-expert). This separation allows everyone to ride terrain that appropriately challenges them and at the right speed. Intermediates need not suffer from performance anxiety and experts won’t be held up by slow pokes.

Of course, another advantage of cat skiing with Big Red Cats is that you can flexibly combine cat skiing with resort skiing.

Big Red Cats are a very reputable operator, and have a good emphasis on safety and the environment. The cat skiing is good value for money, especially for multi-day packages that include accommodation. Be a powder hound and go cat skiing with BRC to do what powder hounds do best – sniff out that powder, and enjoy all the fresh lines.

Bookings & Information Requests

If you have any questions or would like to enquire about a specific date click here.

Where is Big Red Cats Located?

Big Red Cats is based at Red Mountain Resort near Rossland, in southeast British Columbia near the US border. Red Mountain is part of the Powder Highway of BC, which is renowned for great mountains and an abundance of quality powder, and is home to various cat skiing and heli skiing outfits.

Red Mountain is also central to the Selkirk Powder Triangle which includes Rossland/Red (and Big Red Cats), Whitewater and Schweitzer down in northern Idaho.

The meeting point for cat skiing with Big Red Cats is at the base of Red Mountain Resort (2/4430 Red Mountain Road in the Red Robs condo building). The snowcat staging area is about 15 minutes away from the office, and bus transport is provided (or you can drive yourself).

Gateway Airports

There are multiple gateway airports for Red Mountain, and you can search for flight options here.

Big Red Cats is just a 2.5 hour drive north of Spokane International Airport (in Washington State) which is serviced by multiple airlines, from where there are various shuttle services. If you fly in here and self-drive, you could include a little stop-over at Schweitzer Mountain Resort.

Trail Airport is 15km from Rossland and is only serviced by Pacific Coastal airlines from Vancouver.

Another close airport is at Castlegar which is only half an hour away and serviced by Air Canada Jazz with daily flights from Vancouver and Calgary. Flights here have the risk of being cancelled due to low visibility. Castlegar Airport is unaffectionately known as “Cancelgar”.

The other option is to fly into Kelowna International Airport, which is 3.5 hours away, and ideal if you’re also taking in some of the northern parts of the Powder Highway.


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Big Red Cat Ski Terrain

Big Red Cats has plenty of terrain with 19,300 acres (7,810 hectares) spread across 8 main mountains, which is about 8 times the size of the average for USA cat skiing operators. Whilst the size is a little under the average for BC cat skiing outfits, Big Red Cats has a massive network of 220km of snowcat roads, so all of the terrain can be skied. The size of the terrain is the equivalent of having access to 2.3 times the size of Whistler Blackcomb ski resort, and only having to share it with a small group, rather than thousands of other skiers who steal all your fresh lines.

Elevations range from 1,220 - 2,225 metres (4,000-7,300 ft) although most runs are in the upper two thirds, with an average run length of about 430 vertical metres (1,400ft).

The terrain varies significantly and includes mellow meadows, gentle gladed runs, steep trees, sub-alpine bowls, pillow lines, mushroom tripping, and plenty of other launching pads where you can get sendy. The amount of skiing/snowboarding depends on the conditions (so the amount of transport on the snowcat roads) and the speed of the group. An expert group typically gets 10-13 runs per day (15,000ft or more), an advanced group about 7-11 runs (10,000ft or more), and an intermediate group 6-9 runs (8,000ft).

Ability

The operation is large and with multiple snowcats operating each day, Big Red Cats can provide separate trips that specifically cater to strong intermediates, advanced riders, experts and also uber-experts (those that love to get cliffed out). These are ability levels for off-piste skiing and riding ie the ability to ride on a range of snow conditions which includes powder.

The first person to make a booking for a snowcat trip determines the ability categorisation of that cat. Enquire to check for availability by ability type and also to check that you’re the ability level you think you are!

The minimum age to participate in Big Red Cats skiing is 13, in part due to tree well risk, and those aged 13-15 must ski with a parent.

Snow

The Big Red Cats skiing terrain receives about 12.2 metres (40ft) of snow per season, which is significantly more than nearby Red Mountain Resort.

See the Powderhounds review of Big Red Cats for more information on the terrain and snow.

Safety & Guides

Big Red Cats put a lot of emphasis on safety and risk mitigation. Naturally with backcountry skiing there is always risk involved, but BRCs put a lot of effort into reducing this risk in the following ways.
  • In addition to a lead and tail guide for each group, there is a mobile safety team on the mountain each day that assist with assessment of snow stability and weather observations, and can provide prompt support as required.
  • All guides are qualified. Supervising guides are ACMG Ski Guides or Canada Ski Guide Level 3 qualified. Lead guides are Canada Ski Guide Level 2 qualified or ACMG assistant guides. Tail guides as a minimum have their CAA 1 and a 40 hour wilderness first aid, but often have CSGA1 and additional avalanche and first aid qualifications.
  • BRCs has its own radio repeater to provide constant communications across the whole area, along with satellite phone. All guides and guests are provided with a radio.
  • Big Red Cats are part of Infoex for the CAA so they share information with about 100 other operations in Canada every day in relation to avalanche and weather observations.
  • Each snowcat has rescue equipment.
  • All guests are provided with very high quality Mammut Pulse avalanche transceivers, along with a backpack with shovel and probe.
  • The terrain and snowcat roads get to the top of the mountains so there are no large uncontrollable avalanche slopes hanging above the group.

Powderhounds Review Big Red Cats

The big powder hounds have set out a few times to review the big red cats. Cat skiing with BRC definitely got our powder hound tails wagging – it was difficult not to have a fun time! Big Red Cats is a fabulous all-rounder and we love it!

As a guide to the review ratings below, a 5/5 equates to absolutely phenomenal, 4/5 is excellent, whilst 3/5 is still a very good score. You can check out our cat ski ratings to see how Big Red Cats compares to other mechanized backcountry operations.

Pros

  • Big Red cat skiing can cater very well to differing ability levels due to the separate snowcat trips. You can ride the terrain that’s most appropriate for you at a speed that suits you. This is a phenomenal stand-out feature of this operation, because getting stuck with guests of a different proficiency can ruin your cat skiing day (of course there’s no guarantee that someone won’t embellish their ability level!).
  • BRCs is fantastic for strong intermediates, mostly because of the ability stratification. Despite this, don’t believe any rumours that all the terrain is a bit gentle for advanced and expert skiers and snowboarders – it’s not true! There are plenty of steep slopes and some “sweaty palm” lines and treats to huck off.
  • This is a large and slick operation that is tightly and professionally managed.
  • Safety is a priority. The guides are highly experienced and qualified, and use of guest radios that clip onto the backpack strap also make communications between guides and guests just that bit easier. In addition to 2-3 guides per group there is an extra snow safety officer on a snowmobile for backup. This guide assists in scoping out appropriate runs, snow testing, and support in the event of any incidents.
  • Multi-day cat skiing packages that include accommodation provide great value for money.
  • The flexibility is fabulous. You can choose a level of accommodation that suits your budget, and decide how much cat skiing versus resort skiing you want to do.
Cons 
  • The area around Rossland receives a little less snowfall compared to some other regions in BC, and the top elevation is a little lower than the average for BC cat skiing. On the plus side, BRC will be honest about the snow conditions. They won’t BS you that there’s awesome powder when there’s not, and they offer “snow checks” when required.
  • Unlike some lodge based BC cat ski operations where it’s only 20 minutes to your first run, with BRCs it’s a 15-20 minute bus trip from the office to the snowcat staging and then the cat ride. However it is significantly quicker to the first run compared to nearby Valhalla Powdercats.
Pro or Con Depending On Your Perspective
  • This isn’t one of those cat ski operations based in a remote backcountry lodge where you can really get away from it all. The major upside is that the lodging is significantly more affordable and you can enjoy the delightful town of Rossland (and the flexibility outlined above is possible).
Powder Snow
The snow quality and quantity at Big Red Cats is very good, but it’s not stupendous like it is with some other British Columbia cat skiing operations. The volume of annual snowfall is slightly below average for BC snowcat skiing. The top elevation is only 2,200 metres (versus an average of 2,370 metres across BC) and they seem to have more wind events and warm temp episodes than some other BC cat skiing further north.

On the plus side, the terrain has a variety of aspects so the guides can generally fossick around if it hasn’t snowed in a while, and there are plenty of trees to protect the snow from the sun.
Overall Terrain
The size of the terrain is a little under average for BC cat skiing outfits, however many snowcat operations can’t access all their tenure because they don’t have the snow roads to get you there. This is not the case with Big Red Cats. The BRCs terrain size is generally more than adequate, but with up to 4 snowcats going out each day, it only becomes a problem if there hasn’t been recent snow. Whilst we always had fresh lines at the top of the runs, there were times when further down we had to ski over tracked snow. Having 14 guests (unlike many operators that only have 12) can also have a tiny impact of likelihood of freshies.

The variety of terrain was excellent, in terms of the type of terrain, the length of runs, as well as the degree of challenge it provided.

The unique characteristic of providing different snowcat trips for different ability levels is a major advantage. This gives intermediates an opportunity to go cat skiing, whilst experts can definitely go for it without being relegated to mellow slopes or a slow pace. Despite being a day operator where you can’t ski to and from the lodge, expert groups are still able to cover a decent amount of vertical.
Alpine Terrain
The “alpine terrain” is really mostly sub-alpine terrain, which is typical for most Canada cat skiing. Big Red Cats has a decent amount of sub-alpine terrain and it is generally pitchy and littered with lots of treats such as chutes, jumps and other rocky features. Even if the avalanche risk is somewhat high, the shape of the terrain and the presence of various ridges tend to allow access to parts of the open areas.
Tree Skiing
BRC has plenty of variety with respect to the tree spacing. Some areas have sparse vegetation where you can let the boards fly, some areas have tight trees to make it adequately challenging, whilst other zones are a happy medium with gladed trees. The pitch also varies significantly.

Generally there was negligible traversing into runs, whilst often the egress involved a little bit of “transport” in tight trees. This is somewhat common with cat skiing (although there are a few cat outfits where the consistent fall line suddenly puts you onto the cat track).

Strong Intermediate Terrain


Big Red Cats has a decent range of mellow terrain with sparse vegetation that’s perfect for novice powder hounds. The segregated trips by skill level are an absolute super bonus for intermediates. The only downside is that the majority of the trips are allocated to advanced and expert riders with only a handful of intermediate trips per season. This is only the product of who books in first, so intermediates, get in and book your cat skiing nice and early!
Advanced Terrain
There is an abundance of fantastic tree skiing and sub-alpine terrain for advanced riders. It’s absolute ecstasy!
Expert & Extreme Terrain
Because Big Red Cats can cater so well to intermediates, it seems to attract a reputation amongst some cat skiers as having lame terrain. All fool them because this rep is eons away from reality.

BRC has an abundance of steep terrain that will adequately challenge experts, but possibly not if you are (or think you are) a pro. Some short pitches fall into the “holy fxxx” category, and there are chutes and lots of features for air-time. The only downside is that the steeps are over all too soon, and many of the runs mellow out to a commute back to the snowcat road.

Once again, the ability delineation is fantastic for experts. Sure there’s the chance that some bloke will overestimate his talents, but the chances of being disadvantaged by slow skiers or boarders is pretty slim.
Guiding
Big Red Cats have a large number of guides and they all differ somewhat. The old hands know the terrain intimately and all the nooks and crannies, and exactly where the leaping features are. The guides are generally fantastic at picking the right lines dependent upon the conditions of the snow and snowpack.

We’ve had high levels of confidence in the lead guides with regards to safety aspects and provision of clear and concise instructions. On our last trip, the addition of guest lapel radios made it so easy for the lead guide to continue to provide instructions after he’d skied down, and for guests to speak to the guides. The tail guides barely had anything left to do, although Josh did a great job of adding some instructions and traffic management.
Snowcat
The snowcats are powerful and without heavy arses on them, they purr very quickly up the hill. The cat roads are also efficiently placed which contributes to a faster uphill commute.

The cabin interior had a few rows of seats so some guests had to sit facing backwards. Another minor shortcoming was the side entrance so you had to get in and out via the tracks (which is hard for those us with short legs!), but there were two doors which adds to efficient loading/unloading. There was a little bit of storage, but more spots to put backpacks and helmets would have been handy. The cabin was bright and airy with great windows to appreciate the views, and the snowcat had insulation so we could chitchat to our heart’s content.
Avalanche Mitigation Strategies
As is common with high profile BC cat skiing operators, the emphasis on safety and avalanche risk minimisation at BRC was very apparent to guests in the field and openly discussed. Having at least one guide out there on a snowmobile testing snowpack stability is really impressive (and the snow pit analysis doesn’t cut into precious skiing time).
Safety Briefing
The safety briefing was very comprehensive, especially for a day operator, and the beacon, shovel and probe section included time for everyone to practise. To use time effectively, the other components of the briefing were conducted on the bus, and posters and cups in the snowcat re-emphasised the key points. And to supplement all that, BRCs have 7 safety videos that guests are encouraged to watch before arrival.
Frills
BRCs is not a glitzy cat skiing operation and there aren’t that many frills – you’re there to ski, not be pampered! The food is very basic and includes a simple sandwich, 2 cookies, a piece of fruit, and water (including hot water to make tea). If you like to snack a lot, you may need to BYO.

The rental pool of skis is reasonably extensive and they have Rossi skis which seems apt in Rossland! It’s nice that there’s the option of heading to the restaurant next to the office for après ski drinks and if the guide has taken photos, you can check these out on the screen whilst chilling out.
Value for Money
The rates for day skiing are about the same as other comparable operators in BC, and you have to pay for any additional frills you want such as ski rentals, ABS backpack, breakfast, après ski drinks and snacks.

Where BRC really comes to the fore with respect to value for money is with multi-day packages. Firstly the skiing is significantly discounted for 3 days or more, and the accommodation rates vary from budget to deluxe. Either way, the accommodation value is much better than what you get with a backcountry cat skiing lodge.

The other bonus is that you don’t necessarily have to rent a car to get to BRC, unlike with some cat ski operations where self-drive is the only way to get there, and the rental car may sit around for days not being used.

Notes Regarding Review

The review is largely based on our experience, but also on discussions with staff, former guests, and information available on their website. Our review has some limitations as it’s not possible to ski every run and in all possible snow and weather conditions. Every guide is somewhat different and we acknowledge that everyone’s experience will be slightly different. The ratings are from our perspective only.

Being Large Has Great Advantages

POWDERHOUNDS.COM25/03/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • RiderType
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Month:
    January
  • Admin Rating
    5

Being Large Has Great Advantages

POWDERHOUNDS.COM25/03/2019
Very nice powder out of the wind
Top Dog shredding pow
Magic carpet
Lots of amazing advanced terrain
Way better than a chair lift
Being a large well-oiled machine has some great advantages, with the most obvious one being the highly likelihood of being matched with those of similar proficiency and speed (because when there’s a mismatch, your day is only half as good). You can pick an ability group to start with, and they may do a little shuffling of guests between snowcats if the fit isn’t quite right.

Being large also enables them to have extra snow safety officer/s in the field, so less of your precious skiing time is wasted waiting for your guide to dig a pit or eyeball a run (only to pick another), plus the safety benefits. It is also assumed that having lots of lead guides adds to the brains trust of knowledge regarding avalanche mitigation.

The safety briefing was done very efficiently and effectively and they have the resources to pull together various snow safety videos to supplement the face to face session.

On this trip, we went out for a couple of days. The snow quality varied a little but overall it was quite lovely without being super deep. One day the guides tried to keep us away from wind affected slopes, and thankfully there was an array of treed areas to choose from. All the runs varied a fair bit. There were only a couple that were super steep and very technical, and others just solidly steep and ideal for letting the boards go a little.

We had an incredible time with BRCs. The skiing was so much fun, the vibe in the snowcat was great, and the stoke kept going during après ski whilst Kieren showed us some pics. We stayed at The Josie Hotel at the base of Red Mountain, which as you’d expect for such a deluxe hotel, really topped off the overall experience.

See our full review of Big Red Cats for more information.

Big red cats - red resort feb 2019

Jasper21/02/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • RiderType
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Home Country
    Netherlands
  • Month:
    February

Big red cats - red resort feb 2019

Jasper21/02/2019
What an awesome experience we had with Big Red Cats! As first timers, the whole package was a great experience for us! Loved the tree runs with fresh powder down, and enjoyed the professional and organized way the guides kept us safe all day.
Thanks a lot! Jasper from flatland Holland

Great day with big red cats

scott riddell01/01/2019
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • RiderType
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Intermediate
  • Rider Age
    51-70
  • Home Country
    United Kingdom
  • Month:
    December

Great day with big red cats

scott riddell01/01/2019
Had a day with big red cats on the 29th of December 2018 and what a day it was. I haven't tried heli skiing yet but this must be close.  Really good friendly team,  nobody rushing you and the group was from intermediate to advanced . A few were a good bit better than myself but nobody was rushed and we had between 9 and 11 runs, and the cat in between was good for getting a recharge of the legs.

Would definitely recommend this to anyone as it's probably the most memorable days skiing I have done. And very safe also without being too tame. If you are reading this guys from big red cats,  thanks so much for a great day!

Amazing Day Out!

David Maher06/03/2017
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Rider Ability
    Expert
  • Country
    Australia

Amazing Day Out!

David Maher06/03/2017
Exceed all expectations, great terrain, comfortable cats!
Corey lead guide had the place nailed, found great lines through the trees.

5 day New years cat trip

Jeffery Martin05/01/2016
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • RiderType
    Snowboarder
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Home Country
    United States
  • Month:
    January

5 day New years cat trip

Jeffery Martin05/01/2016
I stayed with Big red cats for a 5 Day Cat Skiing package over the 2015/16 new years holidays. I was a little apprehensive booking the trip after the lackluster snow years we have had lately. But boy am I glad I did. Mother nature delivered the goods, over 3 feet of fresh powdery goodness. It stopped snowing after my second day but even after 3 days of no fresh snow the guides were still getting us untracked powder.

I have only cat skied with Monarch and Steamboat powdercats so I didnt know what to expect. But i must say it was amazing my first run was 45 degrees and trees. "welcome to BC cat skiing" we did steeps, glades, cliffs from 1 meter to 5 meters. the guides were great the safetey training was very thorough and the lead guides did lot of scouting before we were sent down to check for conditions and terrain. I boarded with a lot of people this trip, that have skied with half the cat and Heli operators in BC and they all had Hi praise for the terrain and experience we had.

I stayed in the Red shutter lodge right next to the cat office and their restaurant "Fresh" for 8 nights stay (single occ) the red shutter is an economy lodging with a nice rustic feel, the walls are a little thin thugh so bring your ear plugs if you're a light sleeper. Hot tub, fireplace, wifi all of the basics. the reasturant was great as well, and close.

I cant wait to book next years trip with them.

One cat ski day in january 2015

Bourrecoud Cédric14/05/2015
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • RiderType
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Home Country
    Suisse

One cat ski day in january 2015

Bourrecoud Cédric14/05/2015
It was the first time in catski and the first winter experience to Canada. I have spent a very great day in these remote Monashee mountains. Snow was excellent, very dry and light. The guides were excellent and friendly. The organisation was very professionnal. We have runned 8 times so it's good money worth.

The terrain was something funny with trees but not too many so you have space to follow your way! Comparing to heliski it is very enjoyable because you ski more and for less money. It is a very good alternative for freeride. I would highly recommend.

One cat ski day in january 2015

Bourrecoud Cédric14/05/2015
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Rider Ability
    Advanced
  • Country
    Suisse

One cat ski day in january 2015

Bourrecoud Cédric14/05/2015
It was the first time in catski and the first winter experience to Canada. I have spent a very great day in these remote Monashee mountains. Snow was excellent, very dry and light. The guides were excellent and friendly. The organisation was very professionnal. We have runned 8 times so it's good money worth.

The terrain was something funny with trees but not too many so you have space to follow your way! Comparing to heliski it is very enjoyable because you ski more and for less money. It is a very good alternative for freeride. I would highly recommend.

The Biggest For a Reason-Value

Philip Greenwood27/03/2015
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • RiderType
    Snowboarder
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    51-70
  • Home Country
    Canada

The Biggest For a Reason-Value

Philip Greenwood27/03/2015
About 30 days over six years with this operation. They can accommodate intermediate to expert and I've seen 13 year old kids to about 65 years young skiers and boarders. About 90% of the terrain is tree skiing or in small open glades.Guides are professional and generally move things along to accommodate everyone.

They allow rain-checks for bad conditions for up to two years. Have back up cats for breakdowns, lots of terrain, are organized and efficient.

Only drawback is because they are a day-skiing type operation and don't leave from the lodge right onto the mountain. There is a 20 minute bus ride before and after skiing. A 20 minute cat ride to (and from) the mountain and avalanche briefings before the cat ride to brief new skiers every day.

One lunch provided, accommodation extra. Priced about 1/2 other cat ski operations.

The Biggest For a Reason-Value

Philip Greenwood27/03/2015
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Snowboarder
  • Rider Age
    51-65
  • Rider Ability
    Advanced
  • Country
    Canada

The Biggest For a Reason-Value

Philip Greenwood27/03/2015
About 30 days over six years with this operation. They can accommodate intermediate to expert and I've seen 13 year old kids to about 65 years young skiers and boarders. About 90% of the terrain is tree skiing or in small open glades.Guides are professional and generally move things along to accommodate everyone.

They allow rain-checks for bad conditions for up to two years. Have back up cats for breakdowns, lots of terrain, are organized and efficient.

Only drawback is because they are a day-skiing type operation and don't leave from the lodge right onto the mountain. There is a 20 minute bus ride before and after skiing. A 20 minute cat ride to (and from) the mountain and avalanche briefings before the cat ride to brief new skiers every day.

One lunch provided, accommodation extra. Priced about 1/2 other cat ski operations.

Great Day With BRC

Matt20/01/2015
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Snowboarder
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Rider Ability
    Advanced
  • Country
    USA

Great Day With BRC

Matt20/01/2015
My son and I had the opportunity to ski with BRC in mid-January. Being our first time cat skiing (or in the back country for that matter) I was a little concerned about avalanches and other dangers that exist outside the safety of a ski resort. The overnight snowfall was 20-25 cm on top of a not so stable base and Avalanche Canada had raised the avalanche warning to high. We were also placed in an advanced/expert group and as snowboarders I wasn't sure that we'd be able to keep pace with all of the skiers. Turns out all my worrying was completely unfounded.

Our lead guide, Kauri, did a superb job of keeping us safe and educating us on back country risks and hazards. Our tail guide, Kine, kept us all organized and pointed in the right directing while Kauri scouted ahead to find the best lines. After my first two turns any apprehension I had was gone and all I wanted was to get back in the cat and head up for the next run. We had no problem keeping up with the skiers and everyone in the group was very nice. All-in-all it was probably my best day riding ever. If I lived closer I would certainly be keeping an eye out for open seats whenever a storm rolled through. Hopefully we'll get a chance to cat ski again soon and it will be with BRC.

Great Day With BRC

Matt20/01/2015
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • RiderType
    Snowboarder
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Home Country
    USA

Great Day With BRC

Matt20/01/2015
My son and I had the opportunity to ski with BRC in mid-January. Being our first time cat skiing (or in the back country for that matter) I was a little concerned about avalanches and other dangers that exist outside the safety of a ski resort. The overnight snowfall was 20-25 cm on top of a not so stable base and Avalanche Canada had raised the avalanche warning to high. We were also placed in an advanced/expert group and as snowboarders I wasn't sure that we'd be able to keep pace with all of the skiers. Turns out all my worrying was completely unfounded.

Our lead guide, Kauri, did a superb job of keeping us safe and educating us on back country risks and hazards. Our tail guide, Kine, kept us all organized and pointed in the right directing while Kauri scouted ahead to find the best lines. After my first two turns any apprehension I had was gone and all I wanted was to get back in the cat and head up for the next run. We had no problem keeping up with the skiers and everyone in the group was very nice. All-in-all it was probably my best day riding ever. If I lived closer I would certainly be keeping an eye out for open seats whenever a storm rolled through. Hopefully we'll get a chance to cat ski again soon and it will be with BRC.

Big Red Cats will leave a smile on your face

Bob Legasa28/11/2014
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Age
    51-65
  • Rider Ability
    Expert
  • Country
    USA

Big Red Cats will leave a smile on your face

Bob Legasa28/11/2014
If the skiing at BRC doesn't put a smile on your grille then the owner Kieren Gaul definitly will. We had the chance to ski with Kieren in his playground which cover 8 different mountain tops. We hit this in LATE spring and had an over the top experience. Plenty of steeps to be had at BRC.

You can get your legs warmed up a few days before your BRC cat trip at Red Mountain. Good skiing for the whole family at the mountain and nearby Rossland has some fun apres bars and great places to eat.

I highly recommend booking a few days at Big Red Cats. It's easy to get to, only 2.5 hours from the Spokane Airport. Definitely a must for any level of rider.

Check out our trip video at the end of March! Amazing conditions for that time of year. Just so you know the rating guide for the fun factor below does not go high enough!

Big Red Cats will leave a smile on your face

Bob Legasa28/11/2014
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • RiderType
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    51-70
  • Home Country
    USA

Big Red Cats will leave a smile on your face

Bob Legasa28/11/2014
If the skiing at BRC doesn't put a smile on your grille then the owner Kieren Gaul definitly will. We had the chance to ski with Kieren in his playground which cover 8 different mountain tops. We hit this in LATE spring and had an over the top experience. Plenty of steeps to be had at BRC.

You can get your legs warmed up a few days before your BRC cat trip at Red Mountain. Good skiing for the whole family at the mountain and nearby Rossland has some fun apres bars and great places to eat.

I highly recommend booking a few days at Big Red Cats. It's easy to get to, only 2.5 hours from the Spokane Airport. Definitely a must for any level of rider.

Check out our trip video at the end of March! Amazing conditions for that time of year. Just so you know the rating guide for the fun factor below does not go high enough!

Big Red Fun

Mario06/03/2014
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • RiderType
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50

Big Red Fun

Mario06/03/2014
First cat ski trip. Will definitely not be my last. Great group equally matched in our cats every day. Great environment, safe and quick pace which I liked. Shredded a ton of terrain.

Big Red Fun

Mario06/03/2014
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Rider Ability
    Expert

Big Red Fun

Mario06/03/2014
First cat ski trip. Will definitely not be my last. Great group equally matched in our cats every day. Great environment, safe and quick pace which I liked. Shredded a ton of terrain.

Spectacular scenery, great runs and excellent guides.

Basil & Denise06/10/2013
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • RiderType
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Advanced
  • Rider Age
    36-50

Spectacular scenery, great runs and excellent guides.

Basil & Denise06/10/2013
Spectacular scenery, great runs and excellent guides. We skied with Big Red Cats for 3 days in January 2013. The snow pack was excellent and despite lack of recent snow, the guides found us some great powder runs.

Big Red Cats have a very well managed operation and access to plenty of varied terrain. The guides made sure that each individual was well taken care of and worked hard to find runs to suit everyone's ability.

We also stayed on the mountain and skied Red Mountain Resort which offered excellent on and off piste skiing. No crowds, advanced terrain, and friendly locals willing to show us around. There is something for everyone at Red Mountain. Would love to go back soon.

Spectacular scenery, great runs and excellent guides.

Basil & Denise06/10/2013
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Rider Ability
    Advanced
  • Country
    Australia

Spectacular scenery, great runs and excellent guides.

Basil & Denise06/10/2013
Spectacular scenery, great runs and excellent guides. We skied with Big Red Cats for 3 days in January 2013. The snow pack was excellent and despite lack of recent snow, the guides found us some great powder runs.

Big Red Cats have a very well managed operation and access to plenty of varied terrain. The guides made sure that each individual was well taken care of and worked hard to find runs to suit everyone's ability.

We also stayed on the mountain and skied Red Mountain Resort which offered excellent on and off piste skiing. No crowds, advanced terrain, and friendly locals willing to show us around. There is something for everyone at Red Mountain. Would love to go back soon.

One Slick Operation

POWDERHOUNDS.COM01/03/2013
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Rider Ability
    Expert

One Slick Operation

POWDERHOUNDS.COM01/03/2013
Big Red Cats has up to 3 (or even 4) snowcats going out each day and they designate these for intermediates, advanced or experts. This is a very unique characteristic. This gives them the flexibility to really cater for different ability levels, so it’s unlikely that you’d get stuck with people that are way above or below your ability or desire for speed. Not many other cat ski operations can cater well for intermediates, but BRC definitely can.

Other pros: BRC is a very slick, polished and professional operation; there is a variety of accommodation options, all offering good value for money; the attention to detail with regards to safety aspects is impressive; high quality guiding including a back-up guide to assist with snow safety; and fast cats. Being located near Red Mountain is also a bonus so that you can combine resort skiing and cat skiing.

One potential con is that BRC doesn’t receive as much snow as other parts of BC however the annual snowfall is still pretty impressive.

See our Big Red Cats review for more detail.

One Slick Operation

POWDERHOUNDS.COM01/03/2013
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • RiderType
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50

One Slick Operation

POWDERHOUNDS.COM01/03/2013
Big Red Cats has up to 3 (or even 4) snowcats going out each day and they designate these for intermediates, advanced or experts. This is a very unique characteristic. This gives them the flexibility to really cater for different ability levels, so it’s unlikely that you’d get stuck with people that are way above or below your ability or desire for speed. Not many other cat ski operations can cater well for intermediates, but BRC definitely can.

Other pros: BRC is a very slick, polished and professional operation; there is a variety of accommodation options, all offering good value for money; the attention to detail with regards to safety aspects is impressive; high quality guiding including a back-up guide to assist with snow safety; and fast cats. Being located near Red Mountain is also a bonus so that you can combine resort skiing and cat skiing.

One potential con is that BRC doesn’t receive as much snow as other parts of BC however the annual snowfall is still pretty impressive.

See our Big Red Cats review for more detail.

Big Red Cats

Bob Legasa26/04/2012
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • Rider Type
    Skier
  • Rider Age
    36-50
  • Rider Ability
    Expert
  • Country
    USA

Big Red Cats

Bob Legasa26/04/2012
Just 2.5 hours north of Spokane, WA on the Canadian border sits the Iconic ski town of Rossland, BC home to Big Red Cats. This former Gold Mining town carries some legit street cred as I learned from Aussie Transplant Kieren Gaul. The tiny town of Rossland has supplied more people to the Canadian National team than any other town in the whole of Canada and the local racing club here has won more world cup races than any other town in the whole world combined. This town is about the mountains and the riding!

Kieren and wife Paula moved from Australia a few years back and are the owner/operators of Big Red Cats. They run the operation from the base of Red Mountain Ski Area which is located in South Central British Columbia right in the heart of the world renowned Powder Highway. Big Red Cats is one of the biggest cat skiing operations in B.C, with five cats. They run up to four a day and each of their custom made snowcats are spacious and can handle 12 guests with your two certified guides comfortably. Big Red Cats is one of the few operations to split the cats up by ability and offer separate intermediate, advanced, and expert snow cat groups so you don’t ever feel out of place.

BRC has a huge tenure with 20,000 acres complete with some impressive terrain. This zone gets over seven meters of mind blowing snow a year and with the combo of steeps, glades and trees there’s something for all levels of riders.
 
There’s plenty of good après and food in downtown Rossland which is just a stone’s throw away from the base of Red. Make sure you drop into the Steamshovel for a pint and savour the down home, local vibe. Trust me you're going to go away with a fantastic riding experience at Big Red Cats.

Big Red Cats

Bob Legasa26/04/2012
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit
  • RiderType
    Skier
  • Rider Level
    Expert
  • Rider Age
    36-50

Big Red Cats

Bob Legasa26/04/2012
Just 2.5 hours north of Spokane, WA on the Canadian border sits the Iconic ski town of Rossland, BC home to Big Red Cats. This former Gold Mining town carries some legit street cred as I learned from Aussie Transplant Kieren Gaul. The tiny town of Rossland has supplied more people to the Canadian National team than any other town in the whole of Canada and the local racing club here has won more world cup races than any other town in the whole world combined. This town is about the mountains and the riding!

Kieren and wife Paula moved from Australia a few years back and are the owner/operators of Big Red Cats. They run the operation from the base of Red Mountain Ski Area which is located in South Central British Columbia right in the heart of the world renowned Powder Highway. Big Red Cats is one of the biggest cat skiing operations in B.C, with five cats. They run up to four a day and each of their custom made snowcats are spacious and can handle 12 guests with your two certified guides comfortably. Big Red Cats is one of the few operations to split the cats up by ability and offer separate intermediate, advanced, and expert snow cat groups so you don’t ever feel out of place.

BRC has a huge tenure with 20,000 acres complete with some impressive terrain. This zone gets over seven meters of mind blowing snow a year and with the combo of steeps, glades and trees there’s something for all levels of riders.
 
There’s plenty of good après and food in downtown Rossland which is just a stone’s throw away from the base of Red. Make sure you drop into the Steamshovel for a pint and savour the down home, local vibe. Trust me you're going to go away with a fantastic riding experience at Big Red Cats.

Good Times in Rossland

Mathieu27/02/2011
  • Recommend
  • Would Revisit

    Good Times in Rossland

    Mathieu27/02/2011
    Super fun and good terrain make this cat operation a great deal if you are looking for woods, steeps, pillows and dirty jokes. Extensive terrain, great day even if there had been no fresh snow for one week or more.

    The head guide Lee knew where to go, and tail guide Nathalie was as smart and fun as she was pro.

    Good Times in Rossland

    Mathieu27/02/2011
    • Recommend
    • Would Revisit
    • RiderType
      N/A
    • Rider Level
      N/A
    • Rider Age
      N/A

    Good Times in Rossland

    Mathieu27/02/2011
    Super fun and good terrain make this cat operation a great deal if you are looking for woods, steeps, pillows and dirty jokes. Extensive terrain, great day even if there had been no fresh snow for one week or more.

    The head guide Lee knew where to go, and tail guide Nathalie was as smart and fun as she was pro.
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