*What is your canceling/rescheduling policy?
Please understand we are a small business with a limited season for operating, therefore cancellations affect us greatly and we must adhere to our cancellation policy. We suggest you consider carrying a policy with Travel Guard to insure your trip.
- Cancellation-No Snow: “No snow means no snow for touring. If we can tour, but can’t make powder turns, we still consider that we have snow. If there truly is no snow, then we’ll give you a full refund, less a 15% service fee on the deposit.
- Cancellation- Foul Weather/Avalanche Hazard: We do not guarantee the weather, therefore there is no refund because of foul weather, poor snow conditions, or avalanche hazard. There are avalanche hazard-free routes into the huts and safe ski terrain around all the huts. A rental party has the option of hiring an SVT guide to show the party safe routes of travel.
- Cancellation-Sickness or Emergency: The deposit is non-refundable. A doctor or emergency statement is required to confirm a sickness or emergency. For example, colds and flu are not refund bugs.
- The $150 deposit on the hut rental reservation is nonrefundable. The balance is due 30 days prior to trip departure. You can pay with Visa, Mastercard, or a personal check. If we have already collected the balance and you cancel with more than 30 days notice, you will receive a Full Refund, less the deposit.
- If you cancel between 30 days and 2 weeks, we refund half the balance, not the deposit.
- If you cancel less than 2 weeks before your trip, no refund.
- We understand things come up and want to work with you and see you go out to the huts. The deposit is nonrefundable, but is transferable. If you cancel with more than 30 days notice, your remaining Balance from date of cancellation may be utilized for another trip in the current season, weekdays only.
*What amenities are at the huts?
The cozy huts are equipped with wood stoves, pre-cut firewood, a sauna or hot tub, a complete kitchen, propane cooking unit, bunk beds with sleeping pads, Coleman lanterns, games, magazines, toilet paper, paper towels, all cleaning supplies and covered toilets with a warm seat. The renter brings food, personal gear , sleeping bag, and avalanche gear if visiting one of the high elevation huts. A Ski Tour and Downhill Ski Guide plus map are located in the information binder at each of the huts.
*Do the huts have hot tubs or saunas?
Yes, Bench Hut, Boulder Hut, Tornak Hut, Coyote Yurt and Pioneer Yurt all have wood fired saunas.
Fishhook Hut has a wood fired hot tub.
*Can I take my dog to the hut?
We love dogs, and hate to be discriminatory, but we cannot allow them at our huts in the winter. We melt snow for water, and dogs tend to, you know, leave their mark, around the hut. This creates a very unsanitary situation!!!
Plus there is an issue with wintering wildlife too.
We have one hut up in the summer, the Coyote Yurt. We do allow people to bring dogs to the yurt in the summer only, because we do not have the water problem there.
*What is the check in/out time?
The check in/out time is 12:00 noon. We ask that you do not arrive before noon and that you be packed and have the hut clean by 12 noon on your day of departure. You can enjoy the hut until the next party arrives, and then you can be on your way out.
*Are the routes to the huts marked or maintained?
No, routes are not maintained or marked. Map and compass skills are essential. You can buy detailed topographic maps at local mountain shops, Backwoods Mountain Sports and The Elephants Perch, both in Ketchum, or the SNRA north of town. Please keep in mind that even shorter trips with minimal elevation gains can become very challenging in whiteout conditions or if you have to break trail through fresh snow.
*Can/should/do I have to hire a guide?
If you or anyone else in your party has NOT been into the particular hut/yurt before, a guide is required. The guide will ensure you have no difficulty finding the hut and will go over an important yurt-life orientation. Hiring a guide enhances your whole experience; they will lead you and your group safely and efficiently to the hut as well as provide local and up to date information on snow stability, potential ski tours, the best destinations and secret stashes to maximize fun and safety on your backcountry hut trip. Our guides are great companions, you will not regret having a guide along!
*How long does it take to ski into a hut? Snowshoe?
Travel time varies greatly depending on the difficulty of the route, personal ability and weather conditions. A general rule of thumb is to estimate one mile per hour and an additional hour for every thousand feet of vertical gain. On clear days when a trail has already been broken, most groups will travel faster, but in low visibility or if there is no broken trail, it can take even longer. Below are some estimates for travel time to each hut:
- Fishhook Hut 3-5 hours
- Bench Hut 3-5 hours
- Boulder Hut ½ -2 hours
- Tornak Hut 3-5 hours
- Coyote Yurt 4-7 hours
- Pioneer Yurt 3-6 hours
*What do we do for water?
Winter hut users will find large pots at the huts for melting snow. Put water from a water bottle in the stainless steel pot and slowly add snow until you have accumulated some water volume. Filling the pot with dry snow will result in scorching the metal pot and a certain “burnt” taste to your water. If you consistently add snow to the pot, you can make plenty of water for drinking and washing dishes.
Summer hut users: we have water in jugs at the Coyote Yurt for summer use.
*Will my cell phone work at the huts?
A cell phone could be extremely helpful in the event of an emergency, but can not be relied upon. Cell communication is very limited, it may be available near the following huts; Tornak, Coyote, Bench and Pioneer.
*Are snowmobiles allowed to access the huts?
It is possible to use a snowmobile at Tornak, Coyote and Pioneer Huts to get closer. But you can not actually drive the machines to the hut.
- If you are going to snowmobile into Tornak Hut please park your snowmobile on the road 100 yards away from the Tornak Hut so that a snowmobile trail is not created to the hut.
- For Coyote Yurt, we suggest you park your snowmobile at the gate on the East Fork of Baker Creek road and ski the 2 miles up to the yurt. You still carry your gear uphill for 1800 feet, but it reduces your travel time by about 2 hours and provides a fun ski out of the yurt.
- Pioneer Yurt you can snowmobile within 1000 feet of the yurt up until March 15th, after that the area is open to snowmobiles and you can actually snowmobile right up to the yurt, keep in mind that it is in mountainous terrain.
- Boulder is in a non-motorized area, so no snowmobiles.
- Bench and Fishhook are also located in a non-motorized region, but it is possible to snowmobile the 2 miles up Redfish Lake Road to get a little closer, but is a fairly easy ski in.
- For those of you who do plan to use a snowmobile, please keep in mind that the huts are in very remote, backcountry locations and that you are on your own. Additionally, the goal is to have a quiet, non-motorized backcountry experience, so please be courteous of fellow backcountry enthusiasts.
*Can I use a sled to carry the heavy stuff into the huts?
Sleds work great for Boulder, Fishhook and Bench, but is more difficult getting into Pioneer, due to distance and elevation gain. We do not recommend sled use for access to Tornak Hut and Coyote Yurt, the routes are too steep.
*Can I go to a hut in the summer?
Yes. We do keep a yurt open in the summer, the Cooyote Yurt located in the beautiful Smokey Mountains. It is great to hike, bike or even drive to the yurt (still a ½ mile hike in the yurt from the parking area). Coyote Yurt sits at 8700' in the Smoky Mountains of Central Idaho with incredible views of the Pioneer Mountains, the Boulder Mountains, and the Smokies. For more information, visit the Coyote Summer Yurt page.
*Is it okay to carry a cooler with ice to Coyote Yurt?
You definitely can carry a cooler with ice to Coyote Yurt, just keep in mind you will have to carry it the ½ mile up to the yurt. We do have a wagon hauler that could make it easier if there are a couple strong hands willing to push and pull. We recommend putting the food and beers in your backpack with some freezer cold packs and using the 2 coolers at the yurt instead of carrying up a heavy cooler.
*How do I make a hut reservation?
To make a reservation you can either call 208-788-1966 or email us at email@example.com. We will collect a non-refundable deposit of $150 to hold your dates. We accept Visa, Mastercard, or a personal check for the deposit.
- On weekends (Fri/Sat nights and holidays) a Private reservation is required and the minimum cost is $350/night at all huts.
- Sunday-Thursday nights the minimum cost per night at all huts is $175, which covers 5 people’s spaces. If you have more than 5 people, each person must also pay $35/night. If you would like to reserve the yurt Privately on a Sun-Thurs night, to ensure that no other party will join you, the cost is minimum $350/night.
- Please remember to attach an additional 6% to your total for Idaho sales tax.
*How do I sign-up for an Avalanche course, Chix on Stix and other guided expeditions?
Either call us or go to our website for dates and cost of the ski programs.To make a reservation we will need a non-refundable deposit of $200. We can put it on your credit card (or take a personal check), and collect the balance one month before the course/expedition starts. Upon receipt of the deposit we will send you a confirmation packet in the mail with an equipment checklist, and some forms to be filled out and sent back to us. After you have looked over the equipment checklist please let us know if you will need to rent any gear.