Escape the resort crowds and earn your turns on a backcountry skiing adventure in Colorado’s Summit County. We scout out the best conditions and assess avalanche danger and other potentially dangerous conditions that may not be visible to the untrained eye. Not an expert skier? Never skied in the backcountry? No problem! If you can ski Vail’s back bowls, you can ski in the backcountry.
Our experienced and professional guides will teach uphill and downhill skiing technique, risk management, and talk you through decision-making in the backcountry. Bring your own gear or take advantage of our rental packages to get fully equipped with alpine touring boots, skis, bindings, avalanche beacon, shovels, and probes.
Backcountry skiing is one of the best ways to enjoy the winter in Colorado. Not only does it provide the opportunity to extend your ski season but it allows you to experience something few skiers ever will, skiing powder in solitude. Enjoy some mellow turns in a fresh tree stash, lay the first line down the powder filled meadow, or even potentially traverse a high alpine ridge line to a snow-covered summit. CAG’s professionally trained guides are here to show you the way.
Acquiring rentals can sometimes be stressful. Look no further, new for the 2021/2022 season we are now operating a full backcountry demo shop out of our basecamp in Silverthorne, CO. We will be carrying full A/T touring setups from Weston, Faction, Dynafit, and Stereo. Discounts will be honored when booking a guided tour or course. We also carry snowshoes, ice climbing gear, avalanche rescue gear, and more.
Offer more than just a guided experiences. We understand that backcountry travel requires a wide range of skills. This can be an overwhelming endeavor for those looking to start backcountry skiing on their own. Welcome, the Backcountry Mentorship Program. From clinics to avalanche education, to ski mountaineering courses we have you covered and offer plentiful perks along the way. Our local team of experienced and qualified guides are here to help you on your journey towards a lifetime of backcountry skiing.
1 day ( 8 hours)
Guided backcountry skiing tours generally operate from December to April depending on conditions.
1 person – $375
2 people – $240
3 people – $195
4 people – $175
5 people – $165
5 clients:1 guide
Summit Country, CO and surrounding locations.
204 Ryan Gulch Rd Silverthorne, CO 80498
Pre Trip – Clients will be contacted directly from their guide no later than 48 hours before trip start to discuss trip details
Day of Tour – 8:00am – 4:00pm Meet at TH or CAG basecamp to meet your guide and then travel into the field for a full day of learning and fun
Medium sized backpack (approx. 40L)
Alpine Touring Skis, Telemark Skis, or Splitboard
Climbing Skins (must be properly fitted)
Hard or softshell pants
Synthetic or merino wool base layer
Softshell jacket (optional)
Down or synthetic insulated jacket
Hardshell or water/wind resistant jacket
Light gloves for uphill travel
Brimmed hat or visor
Neck gaitor or buff
Joining CAG for a Summit based adventure? Check out our partners at The Pad, Silverthorne’s first boutique hotel/hostel, centrally-located along the Blue River, in the heart of Colorado ski country. Built for the modern traveler, their affordable, yet high-amenity, lodging in beautiful Summit County, Colorado allows our guests to prioritize experience, adventure and to focus their spending on activities and experiences in the Rocky Mountains and our community. Just ask the folks at CAG for details or click the button below to visit their website.
Refunds will be honored for cancellations with more than 48 Hours PRIOR notice to trip start time. An administrative fee of 10% will be assessed for all cancellations.
Rescheduling will be honored 48 HOURS prior to trip start date. An administrative fee of 10% will be assessed for all rescheduling.
All activities are Rain or Shine. In case of operator cancellation due to adverse or unsafe conditions prior to start time, first the operator will attempt to reschedule. If rescheduling is not possible, the client will receive a full refund. Operator, including guides in the field, reserve the right to shorten or reroute activity in the case of unmanageable hazards or inability of guest to complete the objective. Completion of objective-based routes is not guaranteed.
Students on skis or boards must be comfortable in steep blue to black terrain at the ski resort. Students should be able to travel off-trail on ungroomed or unmaintained terrain and bring appropriate equipment for traveling on snow. Touring skis and splitboards are available for rent from our Silverthorne, CO basecamp. Looking for more of an educational outing? Sign up for one of our 1-day Intro to Backcountry Ski or Splitboard Courses!
Local qualified and professional Guides
5:1 maximum client:guide ratio
Discounted use of ORTOVOX beacon, shovel and probe (if needed)
Discounted Demo Gear
We are cognizant that COVID-19 remains problematic, and we are instituting safety policies for our students/clients, guides, and staff. We will continue to follow all Local, State, and CDC health guidelines throughout the season and as such our COVID policy is subject to change. Please check our COVID-19 page for the most up to date information for your trip or course.
Backcountry skiing can be a physically demanding activity. Prior to the start of any course or backcountry trip you will be asked to complete a brief health history. The failure to disclose pertinent information on the health history form could result in serious harm, even death, to the signing participant, other guests and/or the guide. All information submitted is completely confidential; it is for the guide’s use and would only be shared in the event of an emergency with medical and/or rescue personnel directly caring for the guest. Your ability to enjoy the adventure depends on your health and fitness, thus it’s recommended that you are in good physical condition.
While backcountry skiing poses inherent risks, Colorado Adventure Guides number one priority is in keeping our staff, patrons and students out of harms way. Our guides and instructors have many years of experience and are professionally trained to recognize potentially hazardous situations in the backcountry; they plan and operate accordingly.
All of our guided backcountry skiing trips are booked private and custom and priced accordingly. If you are looking for a group trip option please see our Backcountry Skiing Courses or contact us to see if we have any group trips available on the schedule.
Before your backcountry skiing trip make sure that you are comfortable skiing on the ski resort and are ready for a day skiing in unmaintained terrain. You will want to make sure you drink plenty of water leading up to the day and get a good nights rest. It is always smart to pack the night before to make sure that you have everything needed for the next day. Get a good stretch in the morning and make sure to pack plenty of water and snacks to stay fueled throughout the day.
For field based trips clients will be encouraged to utilize our CAG Company vans or to carpool to help alleviate trailhead overcrowding. Your instructor/guide will contact you with more details at least 48 hours prior to the date of your trip that will include meeting time and location.
Your instructors work hard before, during, and after your course to provide you with a great experience and while not expected, gratuities are always highly appreciated and if you had a safe, educational, and fun experience. Gratuities typically range from 15-20%.
If you are reasonably fit, and you can ski on the resort comfortably at a Blue/Black level, then you should be able to enjoy an easy to moderate tour in the backcountry. The uphill touring requires a bit more physical fitness and then the downhill skiing surface conditions can always vary.
We operate our guided ski tours, conditions permitting, from December through May. Throughout most of the winter in Colorado our tours are in the search of powder and are on the mellow side in terms of steepness due to avalanche concerns. Once our snowpack starts to become more stable, typically around Spring, we start to venture out into our steeper and more technical skiing terrain.
Our backcountry skiing tours have limited capacity and tend to book up months in advance. It is strongly recommended that you reserve your spot before the winter season starts.