Fresh powder turns all day long, no lift lines-and no lifts, for that matter. No, there are no helicopters involved, nor a lung-exploding hike. Your bank account won’t suffer, and you won’t have to drive to a remote location in British Columbia. Still guessing? I’ll give you a hint: snowcats. “Ah, yes,” you say, “I’ve heard of these snowcat tours.” But perhaps you haven’t heard of this one.

For the past three years, Keystone Colorado has been making 860 acres of in-bounds backcountry riding accessible via guided snowcat tours to people who wish to experience something a little more adventurous than the resort’s lift-accessible terrain. This season, Keystone has expanded the acreage by 278 acres by opening Independence Bowl, a veritable treasure trove of steep, deep, untracked powder.

On Friday, December 15, Joe Carlino and I were lucky enough to go on a media tour of the new expansion. Maybe it was the pessimist in me, or maybe it was the pounding, altitude-induced headache that I woke up to that morning that made me consider crawling back in bed. Thankfully, I chose to go. If you’re in area this winter, I suggest you do the same. Now go look at the slideshow. I know that’s all you want to do anyway.

Keystone Adventure Tours
$81 per day (plus the price of a lift ticket)www.keystoneresort.com
1-800-468-5004