Untouched Lines

Heli-skiing on Greenland's West Coast

From Summit To Sea

Greenland is one of the most spectacular places to ski in the world. Its powdery slopes are best accessed from the helideck of a superyacht. Visiting Greenland, let alone skiing here, has never been easy – an island archipelago with few towns, very few hotels, virtually no roads, no ski lifts, minimal infrastructure, a very complex fjord system to navigate and a total population of just 55,000. But for those with a superyacht, a snow-capped wilderness with deep untracked powder and glacial runs dropping as much as 2,000 metres to the fjords below awaits. With the help of a helicopter to lift you from your yacht’s helipad high up into the most heavily glaciated, dramatic mountains imaginable, you can spend a day of sensational skiing, then return to the comfort of your waiting yacht.

Go with the Pro

A heliskiing charter in Greenland, arranged with local skiing experts, offers seven to ten days of sensational skiing, typically lifting off in the helicopter around 9.30am, skiing four or five untouched runs before stopping off for an idyllic picnic lunch on a peak or beach, and then skiing another four or five in the afternoon. You’ll have one guide for every three or four guests, another guide on standby, a helicopter pilot at your disposal, and, if desired, a professional powder skiing instructor dedicated to helping you improve your style. All the necessary safety equipment is provided — rescue gear, transceivers, avalanche airbags — giving you peace of mind. And at the end of the day the helicopter flies you right back to your luxury yacht for a night spent on the open ocean, under the stars.

Epic Slopes

While the waters off the east of Greenland are dense with sea ice, most heliskiing yacht charters focus on the wild west coast of Greenland. There’s some world-class backcountry skiing around Maniitsoq Island, with wide, immaculate slopes descending along the fjords all the way to the water. It’s also home to colourful little clapboard villages, pristine rivers and pods of visiting humpback whales. Maniitsoq Island opens the gates to vast and deep fjords encompassing the most beautiful mountains in the region, including the 100km-long, endlessly forking inlet that is Eternity Fjord, where glacier upon glacier pours down from towering peaks. Here you can ski glaciers, couloirs, vast bowls and virgin snow that’s never once been skied before.

Luminous Lights

Further north again is Disko Bay, carving the most impressive icebergs of the Northern Hemisphere. This is a magnificent fjordscape and a UNESCO World Heritage site, offering mythic vistas, empty blue skies and spring snow so light it’s like skiing on a cloud. The west of Greenland offers skiing at its purest and most thrilling. Nowhere else can you drop from summit to sea in a single descent. But a heli-skiing yacht charter to this part of the planet offers more than just epic slopes and virgin snow. If you come to Greenland early in the main heli-skiing season, which runs from late March to mid-May, you might even catch a glimpse of Aurora Borealis – those storied, luminous lights, dancing mysteriously in the Arctic night.