Updated: Apr 24, 2019
Snowbiking is the hottest motorized sport in the world and it’s easy to see why. 5 of us headed up the snowy winter playground of Whistler, Canada to ride the glacier peaks with one of the greatest snowmobile riders ever, Geoff Kyle. The snow was incredible, the machines were world class, and the adventure was simply epic. Altogether the highest overall FACE Score™ of 9.6 for this near perfect adventure.
Summary: Two days snowbike riding through the glacier parks of Whistler, Canada. Guided by sledding legend Geoff Kyle, these dirt bikes with snowmobile tracks are beyond fun.
Where Was It: Two hours North of Vancouver, Canada in the town of Whistler at Geoff Kyle’s Freeride lodge.
Here’s how it went down:
5 of us flew into Vancouver, rented a car and headed up the famed Sea to Sky highway to Whistler. Growing up in Vancouver, I’ve been up and down this road many times but it never ceases to amaze me. It is one of the most beautiful stretches of road anywhere in the world. We arrived at Geoff’s place by 7:00 pm that evening.
Geoff’s place is an amazing authentic log cabin tucked in the hills of the neighboring town of Pemberton. We settled into the suites and joined Geoff and Virginia for home cooked appetizers and cocktails. Very cool - Geoff has cut blocks of 100k year old ice glaciers and cracks them open for drinks. Sipping scotch with glacier ice is something special.
The next morning we pack up all our gear and get ready to hit the trail. It’s nice that Geoff provides all the gear for riding (boots, helmets, goggles, backpacks, radios, avalanche beacons). All that’s needed is your ski gear and you’re good to go. After a quick safety briefing we were off to one of Geoff’s secret spots.
The snowbikes are incredibly fun to ride. It’s like riding a dirt bike on a cloud. All the speed and fun but none of the consequence. The Beta bikes have great power and balance and within about 20 minutes you feel in total control. I’ve ridden snowmobiles before and the difference is staggering. The snowbikes are absolutely intuitive and natural to ride. Once you get the hang of it, you can go like a pro. Geoff took us to a beautiful frozen lake and treed valley (he keeps the name secret). The snow was so deep and soft we played and played for hours till it was time for lunch.
Geoff forages and finds some dead wood and makes a fire right in the snow. He slaps on some homemade moose sausage on the flames and cooks us up a world-class trail lunch. We spent the rest of the day riding untouched valleys and tree lined hills smiling ear to ear.
That night Virginia made her famous moose stew (from her hunt), which really hit the spot and then a quick dip in the hot tub, some chatting by the fire, and it was lights out.
Day two was to the Whistler side and into the glaciers. We rode way, way up the groomed trail above the tree line to find endless mountain glacier tops. It was by far the most beautiful scene I’ve ever experienced. Pure white glacier tops with nothing but untouched snow for as far as you could see. Simply awe-inspiring. We rode for hours without seeing another group or another track. It was incredible.
We stopped and hiked down to see a collapsed ice cave and had lunch literally on the face of a glacier ice mountain. Not sure how to describe it. Without fail someone will ask me about avalanches and if we were concerned. The answer is absolutely not. Yes, we have all the protection and Geoff gives a very thorough avalanche pre-safety talk and training each day, but when Geoff guides, you can see the years of experience and confidence leading you. Not once were we in an area that was concerning.
I’d heard rumors for years about Geoff Kyle and his riding, and I grew up watching his Sledneck videos, but getting a chance to follow him, carving perfect figure 8 tracks together down the open untouched face of a powdery glacier was a very surreal experience.
Driving back to Vancouver Sunday night, the 5 of us smiled and relived the adventure till we landed back at LAX. Still one of the most enjoyable, exciting weekends in memory.
Best Moments: Cresting over the last trailhead to see the open glacier terrain. Virginia’s Moose stew.
What We Loved: Geoff Kyle is a world-class guide. It makes all the difference. The new Beta bikes and Yeti kits were a noticeable improvement from previous years.
What We’d Change: Just more time on the hill. Would love three days.
Who Is This For: If you’ve ridden a dirt bike, you will love this. If you’ve ridden a snowmobile, you’ll totally love this. Effectively, if you have any motorized vehicle skill or desire, you will love this.
Must Have Gear: These padded bike shorts are a butt saver!
FUN: 10.0 – There is absolutely nothing like rolling with total control and power through the soft powder. Better than skiing, better that snowmobiling.
ADVENTURE: 9.8 – The exotic nature of Whistler adds to the experience and there is always a trail ride to get to the riding destination. It really adds some accomplishment to the overall experience.
COST: 6.0 – It’s not cheap, but it’s tremendous value.
EFFORT: - 4.0 – It’s a drive to Whistler so there is some travel involved, but manageable.
Overall FACE Score™ 9.6
Will I do this one again? Most certainly. Contact me if you want to roll with.
Want details on RA Members exclusive pricing, email me.
Connect with the team: