Ski and riding equipment has changed a lot in the past 5 years

Guests should come to the North Cascades prepared with the necessary clothing and equipment you might need for a variety of weather and snow conditions for a day in the mountains. We strongly recommend that you bring modern ski and/or riding gear, which will make your experience both safer and much more fun!

If you have questions about your current gear, give us a call and we can make some recommendations. If you know your current gear is dated, the Goat’s Beard Mountain Supplies in Mazama rents high quality touring gear, including split boards.


North Cascade Heli

Due to the nature and type of conditions we encounter, we strongly recommend that our guest use fat powder skis or longer, wider snowboards that are better suited for backcountry riding. More flotation equals more fun!

We currently have a wide selection of skis to choose from, including K2 Coombas, Coombacks, Obsetheds, Darksides, Hellbents and Pontoons. For our female guests, we also have several pair of K2 Phat Luvs, their women's specific powder ski. We are also proud to offer a limited selection of K2 snowboards, including a number of different length Gyrators. Guests can bring their own equipment, but are welcome to take advantage of the demo K2 skis and snowboards we have at the heli barn (included in the price of your program). An added bonus: this means all you need to travel with is your clothing and boots!

North Cascade Heli

We can and do experience a wide variety of weather during a day in the mountains. Guests should be prepared to spend a full day in the mountains, with some down time waiting for the helicopter. Clothing should be loose-fitting for warmth and ease of movement and should provide protection from wind and snow. Powder suits work well as does a layered system so that you can peel off layers as needed. Be sure to bring a warm hat, gloves, goggles, and sun screen.

All of our clients ski with a small DaKine pack that has room for some extra clothing and snacks. We do have some space for extra clothing in the helicopter and we also carry extra goggles. Boots should provide plenty of warmth and be flexible enough to allow easy bending at the knees and ankles. Ski poles with larger baskets make traveling in deep snow easier (we can provide these for guests who prefer not to travel with poles) and snowboarders are encouraged to carry a pair of collapsible poles in a small backpack.