A rendering of Revelstoke Backcountry Guides proposed hut. ~ Image by Revelstoke Backcountry Guides

A rendering of Revelstoke Backcountry Guides proposed hut. ~ Image by Revelstoke Backcountry Guides

Revelstoke guide seeks backcountry ski hut tenure

Mike Bromberg of Revelstoke Backcountry Guides applying for tenure for heli-access & hut-based touring

A Revelstoke guide is proposing to build a backcountry hut in the Selkirk Mountains just east of town.

Mike Bromberg, an internationally certified mountain guide and the owner Revelstoke Backcountry Guides, has applied for a 40-square-kilometre tenure to build a hut and provide guided tours in the Twin Butte area southeast of Greely.

In his application, Bromberg writes he wants to offer helicopter-accessed ski touring, where small groups would be flown into the tenure area and then ski out to Greely at the end of the day.

“The concept is for small groups of skiers to be transported to the tenured area enabling them to explore terrain which would be difficult or impossible to access without the aid of a helicopter on a one day program,” he says. “After the initial ‘access flight,’ groups would spend the entirety of their day using skins to access the ski runs before a final descent.”

The long-term plan is to build a 2.5-storey lodge capable of sleeping 15 people for trips of two to four nights in length — shorter than the usual week-long stays required at most backcountry lodges.

“Our aim is for the egress of guided groups is human powered (without the use of helicopter transport), a feature truly uncommon for backcountry experiences in British Columbia,” writes Bromberg. “Our existing clientele has indicated that this is absolutely an opportunity that they can support and fits with our brand of thoughtful, connection-centric experiences.”

Revelstoke Background Guides was formed last year and offered tours from Revelstoke Mountain Resort and in Rogers Pass last winter. They also offer guided rockclimbing in an area south of Revelstoke.

Meanwhile, an application to build a series of huts and trails in the Gold Range southwest of Revelstoke was turned down by province. Jeff Bellis applied to build three huts and connecting trails in the area for the purpose of guided summer hiking and mountaineering.

However, the Integrated Land Management Bureau said the application didn’t have enough information on how the impacts of the operation would be addressed.

“This proposal will affect wildlife, habitat, creating access for humans and predators to the backcountry and the spread of invasive weeds,” states the reason for decision.

Bellis said he was reviewing the government’s requirements and changes it wanted to see before deciding whether or not to re-apply.