Overview

“The mountains are calling and I must go.”

John Muir

On the western side of the great swash of the Rocky Mountain Trench, running closely parallel with the Canadian Rockies, is a great and little-known collection of peaks and ranges called the Columbia Mountains.

Older than the Rockies by a couple of hundred million years, comparable to them in height, fully their equal in majesty, the Columbia ranges attract only a tiny fraction of the Rockies’ visitors. Why? A simple reason: it’s very hard to get up into them as the Columbias are guarded by thickly undergrown wet-belt forests. Only the most inspired, experienced, and stubborn backpackers are able to bushwack their way to the dazzling heights which we attain with ease, thanks to our helicopters.

We heli-hike in two of the Columbias’ most resplendent sub-ranges: the Bugaboos, and the Boobie Burns. Most of us didn’t know that there was so much beautiful wilderness left on the continent. No trails, no campgrounds, no pre-packaged view spots. Very, very rarely we may see a hiker in the distance; almost always it’s just splendidly us. Perfect!

Whether a single, a couple, a family vacation or a group of life-long friends, young or simply young at heart, your serene retreat or wildly spirited custom journey awaits you. Your adventure begins here!

Adventure Level
First-Timers and Old Hands, our guests vary widely in ability and interests. But our mountains are generous; they’ll lavish their gifts on anyone who courts them with respect. Careful matchmakers, our guides keep in close touch with guests throughout their stay. Our hiking groups, organized according to interests and abilities, vary in size. We often have seven guides for a lodge at its full, 44-person, capacity. So there will usually be four flights to the heights for as many as seven different hikes. The idea is to get you well and enjoyably acquainted with the High Country, within the boundaries of your fitness and wishes.

We stress personalized service and flexibility above all. Activities ranging from ambling and walking to hiking and trekking, or even full-blown mountaineering, are tailored to suit your wishes and ability. Whether you are 6 or 96, our objective is to exceed your vacation expectations in every way. The use of our helicopter gives us the flexibility to accommodate all levels of activity.

The following will give you a general idea of how our guides determine hiking groups:

  • You are a person who is very active and enjoys strenuous, fast paced hiking. Your group is made up of people who spend a lot of time in the mountains, are in great physical condition and enjoy challenging their physical and mental limits.
  • You are a person who exercises regularly (3 or 4 times a week) and want to challenge yourself by hiking full days on varied terrain (i.e. hiking over a pass, along ridges or perhaps reaching a peak). Your group consists of people who are sure-footed in rough terrain, may have spent time in the mountains, are in very good physical condition and want to push themselves both physically and mentally.
  • You are a person who exercises occasionally, enjoys hiking for a full day but prefers to do so at a more relaxed pace. Your group includes people who may not have spent much time in the mountains but are keen to explore and stretch their limits a little while with an experienced guide.
  • You are a person who wants the opportunity of exploring a mountain environment in a relaxed manner with an experienced guide. Your group may include those who are apprehensive about hiking in the mountains, are not very sure-footed in rough terrain and are more interested in learning about the environment, fauna and flora than reaching a peak or pass.

Ambling & Walking
Do you wish you could see for yourself the magical landscapes the mountains offer? Cobalt lakes, stupendous glaciers, cascading waterfalls: mountain beauty in its most bewitching form? Or do you dream of secluded, remote, wild places that seem to go on forever? Whether you want to simply take in the views, amble gently along a ridge line, or shoot photographs of marvelously abundant and varied wildflowers, we will be sure to “lift” you to explore your interests. Our walks are tailored to meet your needs and interests. The use of our mountain SUV (aka the helicopter) allows us endless flexibility. You tell us how far and for how long.

Hiking & Trekking
Using a helicopter allows us to “leap-frog the slog”. BUT, the work can be as big, long and heart-pounding as you choose. Our guides are mountain people. They love to share their passion for these magical places. They also love to be challenged and take the more active person just slightly beyond what you thought you could do. Always with safety as the driving factor, we aspire to surpass your expectations.

Mountaineering
Never ever thought they could, but they’ve done it! Forty-five year old mothers with their seventeen year old daughters. Guests who made first ascents in the 50s, looking to regain those heights they never dreamt they could reach again. And then there are the unnamed and unclimbed routes, beckoning those who climb and mountaineer on a regular basis. What would take two weeks to approach, climb and return to your car will now become three bagged peaks in four days.

 

 

Sample Itinerary

 

Lodge-to-Lodge Trips (6…2…1)

 

High Flying Heli-Adventures

Family Adventures

Bodacious in the Bugaboos – Women Only
Grab your girlfriends or meet new ones as you partake in Heli-hiking, yoga, fabulous food and fun. Hike in our blissful surroundings by day and share stories and laughs over wine by night. Leave the boys at home and find your inner bodacious.

Photography workshop with John E. Marriott
John’s easy-going manner and passion for photography will inspire photographers of all levels. The helicopter allows us to explore a variety of landscapes and our mountain guides will take us to special places in and around the Bugaboos with spectacular photo opportunities.

In early August the sun shines brightly on clear mountain lakes and gives life to meadows ablaze with wildflowers. Vibrant reds, purples and yellows carpet the meadows providing beautiful contrast to the jagged spires and ancient glaciers of the Bugaboo Range.

Back at the lodge John will lead evening discussions about techniques and technology and lead a group critique. Our unpretentious hospitality and mountain luxury lodges top off an unforgettable photography workshop.

Private Guided Adventures
Your group or individually customized adventure is waiting to be crafted. Let us tailor a trip perfectly suited to fit your interests and physical skill level.

Really want to get personal? Book the entire lodge for up to 50 guests and host the corporate retreat, family reunion or wedding of a lifetime.

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Dates/Pricing

Short Escapes
Nights Lodge  Adult/Youth/Child Departure
2 Bobbie Burns $1,930/$1,660/$1,448 July 5, 7
3 Bobbie Burns & Bugaboos $2,780/$2,389/$2,039 July 9, 12, 15, 18, 24, 27, 30
August 2, 5, 11, 14, 17, 20, 23, 29
4 Bobbie Burns $3,640/$3,135/$2,730 July 5
3 Bugaboos $2,780/$2,389/$2,039 July 9, 12, 15, 18, 21, 27, 30
August 2, 5, 8, 14, 17, 20, 23, 26, 29
September 1, 4, 7
6 Bobbie Burns – Bugaboos $5,240/$4,505/$3,840 July 9, 12, 15, 18, 24, 27, 30
August 2, 5, 11, 14, 17, 20, 23, 29
High Flying Heli-Adventure
Nights Lodge  Adult/Youth/Child Departure
2 Bobbie Burns $1,930/$1,660/$1,448 July 5, 7
3 Bobbie Burns & Bugaboos $2,780/$2,389/$2,039 July 9, 12, 15, 18, 24, 27, 30
August 2, 5, 11, 14, 17, 20, 23, 29
4 Bobbie Burns $3,640/$3,135/$2,730 July 5
3 Bugaboos $2,780/$2,389/$2,039 July 9, 12, 15, 18, 21, 27, 30
August 2, 5, 8, 14, 17, 20, 23, 26, 29
September 1, 4, 7
6 Bobbie Burns – Bugaboos $5,240/$4,505/$3,840 July 9, 12, 15, 18, 24, 27, 30
August 2, 5, 11, 14, 17, 20, 23, 29
Family Adventures
Nights Lodge  Adult/Youth/Child Departure
3 Bobbie Burns $2,780/$2,389/$2,039 July 21, August 8
3 Bugaboos $2,780/$2,389/$2,039 July 24, August 11
6 Bobbie Burns – Bugaboos $5,240/$4,505/$3,840 July 21, August 8
Bodacious Women’s Adventures
Nights Lodge  Adult/Youth/Child Departure
3 Bobbie Burns Stretch and Stir $2,690
3 Bugaboos – The Classic I $2,690
3 Bugaboos – The Classic II $2,690
3 Bobbie Burns – Cork & Core $2,690
Photo Workshop
Nights
Lodge Adult/Youth/Child
Departure
3 Bugaboos $3,140

NOTE:
Prices are in Canadian dollars and are subject to applicable taxes.
Prices are per person, twin occupancy (excluding private guides).
Single rates are available.
Youth: Individuals 15 – 17 years old.
Child: Individuals 5 – 14 years old.

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Accommodations

“Lodged” between Heaven and Earth
Flying by helicopter into the heart of the Columbia Mountain sub-ranges, the sights of ancient glaciers, jutting pinnacles, snow-capped peaks, and placid lakes are nothing short of mesmerizing. Your heart flutters as you grasp how very far away your “everyday” is and then it is suddenly calmed by the emerging sight of a wilderness lodge, planted firmly in the midst of these splendors. It sits, waiting to welcome you into its warmth and provide you with a home base from which to experience the transcending mountains and majestic evergreens surrounding you.

But don’t let our remote location deceive you…fully equipped with all the modern amenities, our casual, yet refined lodges provide the ultimate beginnings and endings to your days of exploration. Staffed with a dedicated team of guides, hosts and culinary talent, each lodge has a range of offerings to shroud you in true mountain warmth including sauna, whirlpool and massage services, indoor climbing wall, and workout facility. Our cozy rooms with private baths and spectacular views are coupled with a common room graced with a grand fireplace, full-service bar, and deep, inviting armchairs perfect for settling into after an adventure-filled day.

Charming. Remote. Magnificent. Bobbie Burns.
The magnificent Bobbie Burns, named for the distinguished Scottish poet, tempt even the most avid hikers with wondrous mountain terrains. Nestled amid an alpine valley of soaring evergreens, this unpretentious mountain lodge provides the ideal setting for renewal and recreation, connection and conversation. While relaxing on the sun-drenched decks, the abounding wilderness that envelops this mountain sanctuary will entice you to journey both inward and outward.

Featuring 24 rooms (44 guests) with private baths, guests will also relish the outdoor whirlpool, sauna, swimming pond, game room, climbing wall, porch-side basketball hoops, and browsing in the quaint lodge shop. At the fireside hearth, enjoy a glass of award- winning wine from our extensive cellar collection. Or relax with a soothing massage after an active day outdoors.

In addition to some out-of-this world hiking, the Bobbie Burns is home to some of our more adventurous Summer activities such as the Valley bottom adventure trail with 7 zip-lines over raging rivers; spectacular high ropes course; the much-talked-about Mt. Nimbus Via Ferrata; the Conrad Glacier Adventure Trail which combines hiking, Via Ferrata elements, ziplines and more!

Mountain Ranges
Purcells and Selkirks

Base Elevation
1370m

Hiking Elevation
1370m – 3050m

Hiking Terrain
690 sq. km

Enchanting. Magnetic. Captivating. Bugaboos.
Although the Bugaboos are renowned for their commanding granite spires, exploration here will reveal an abundance of blossoming meadows, placid icy lakes and ancient rock formations. Thrill seekers will relish the Skyladder Via Ferrata and their ascent toward the sky or a walk through time on a trek over the glaciers beneath the commanding spires. Long coveted by adventurists the world over, this amazing journey will place you into the elite group who can boast about their encounter with the seemingly unreachable.

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Extensions

Design your own vacation!

We’ll be happy to assist you in customizing a complete Western Canadian holiday. Here are some of the standout places we can book for you to extend your time in the Canadian Rockies.

Fairmont Hotels & Resorts
Stay at the iconic Banff Springs Hotel, Chateau Lake Louise or Jasper Park Lodge! Each of these historic landmark hotels mix opulence with mountain tradition. Notable amenities include the Willow Stream Spa, Stanley Thompson-designed golf courses (consistently ranked Canada’s best) and access to UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including Banff and Jasper National Parks.

Banff Caribou Lodge
Well-appointed yet reasonably priced guest rooms in a mountain lodge atmosphere. A short walk from Banff’s thriving downtown.

Rimrock Resort Hotel
A four-star hotel offering grand views of the Bow Valley. It’s located near the Banff Upper Hot Springs, away from the hustle and bustle of downtown Banff.

Post Hotel
A Relais & Chateau property, the Post is known for its natural-wood features, first-class amenities, and world-class dining room.

Rocky Mountaineer Rail Tours
A wonderful, two-day railroading land cruise across Western Canada from Vancouver to Banff on the luxurious Gold Leaf Service. Great food and great views from the famous glass-roofed Dome Car.

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