Overview: Cat-skiing pioneer Derek McManus built this backcountry log cabin at 6,400 feet in the Canadian Rockies. And by that we do mean cabin: the dormitory-style quarters sleep seven. McManus family members play chef, guide, and host, stoking the woodstove and serving gourmet hors d’oeuvres after last run. It’s a 30-minute helicopter flight from Valemount to the lodge.
Notable: The hut’s tenure includes 30 square miles of serene fir groves, rocky peaks, and mountain passes—plus a bright canvas of evening stars. And it’s way off the grid. Solar power keeps the lights on.
Stay Here If: You’re after uncharted adventure. This winter marks Mallard’s first full season. And with ample options for intermediate to advanced backcountry skiers and snowboarders, accessible lines abound.
Our Take: The McManus family welcomes everyone like long-lost friends.
Information: Beds are oversized twin bunks with privacy curtains. Facilities include a hot water bucket shower and toilets. Valemount is a six-hour drive from Calgary or Kelowna. $2,455 a week includes accommodation, heli shuttles, guiding, and meals. canadianadventurecompany.com —Berne Broudy
From the Winter 2015 issue.