Canada’s vast mountain ranges aren’t just for powder seekers. After the snow melts, British Columbia offers some of the best mountain biking in the world. Level up your two-wheeled adventures with a heli-biking tour that takes you to the summits of your favorite peaks and endless miles of trails. Helicopter-access mountain biking in B.C.’s alpine peaks is a must for any adventurer’s bucket list. Before you fly to Canada in a private jet, keep in mind that the one-way bike drops are best left to advanced and expert riders.
British Columbia’s Top Heli-Biking Destinations
Mount Barbour, Pemberton
With hundreds of kilometers of manicured bike trails, Pemberton in the Coast Mountains makes up part of the Sea to Sky corridor. The mountain bike trails on Mount Barbour were completed in 2016 in an effort to preserve the environment and make them safer. Check them out for yourself with a heli-mountain biking tour by Blackcomb Helicopters, where you’ll ascend more than 6,000 vertical feet. The trip down takes 2.5 to 4 hours, depending on the drop you choose, your speed and the number of stops you make to take in the views. Because of its sandier terrain, the best times of the year to ride are in early and late summer.
Selkirk and Purcell Mountains, West Kootenay Region
With more than 1.5 million acres, Retallack, between Kaslo and New Denver, has the largest backcountry mountain biking operation on the planet. The operator’s world-class riding excursions take you to impressive all-mountain, downhill single-track, and enduro trails, as well as freeride descents where you’ll never encounter crowds. The customizable heli-accessed riding tour can take you to a series of runs that vary between 2,000 and 9,000 feet in elevation, or to one of the longest mountain bike downhill tracks on the planet at 6,000 vertical feet.
One of the few peaks where you might encounter heli-snowboarders during a heli-biking trip, Whistler is an all-mountain adventure. It takes about 15 minutes from the resort town to reach 5,000 vertical feet and its 360-degree views. The trails offer plenty of opportunities for cliff jumping into tarns, as well as various changes in scenery, including ridge lines, alpine meadows, rugged forests, refreshing lakes and seriously steep passages. Book your tour through Blackcomb Helicopters.
About an hour north of Pemberton, South Chilcotin Mountains Provincial Park is home to some of the most gorgeous mountain scenery in B.C. Among the dramatic, glacier-carved peaks are fjord-like lakes and a high plateau that stretches from the Fraser River to the mountains. In addition to its splendid beauty, the Chilcotins are also known for their large population of mustang horses. Rather than ascend in a helicopter, those wanting in on the extreme action charter a float plane that drops riders directly into the alpine. Tyax Adventures offers single- and multi-day tours through the Chilcotin backcountry, where you might see moose, cross streams, traverse steep descents, and encounter grizzly bears.