Guest comments

Guest comments

Thank you so much for taking care of us all, it is an amazing effort that you pull off so well. When I am out with Ruedi I feel like I'm in the presence of a great gravitational force that takes a hold of me and gets me to places I would not be on my own and get to see wonderful things.

Bruce, CA (April, 2017)

Many thanks to all of the staff at SME. I have skied all my life but never have I seen such backcountry majesty and granduer. And Ruedi, so immensely professional with just the right amount of western outlaw...

Jim, CA (April, 2017)

Well Ruedi you lived up to your reputation - one tough son of .......... a teddy bear really! And a pleasure to spend a week with the rest of the staff too. You all make the SME experience the best. So happy to have gotten to ski so much terrain despite weather and snow conditions. You exceeded expectations and them some. Keep it up - excellence is rare.

Jim, CO (March, 2015 )

This place is fantastic, Ruedi and Nicoline are amazing hosts. Many thanks for all the hard work that makes the Durrand Glacier one of the best ski touring experiences ever.

Peter, MA (March, 2014 )

I just wanted to drop you both a quick line to thank you both and all your team for giving us such a fantastic week. Some of the descents were undoubtedly the best I have ever experienced - as Dan knows, I exclaimed at the time they were orgasmic - or that's how it felt!! And I loved some of the ascents as well, skinning up untouched glaciers and snowfields surrounded by peaks that seem to go on for ever in the distance. What wonderful terrain you chose, Ruedi, all those years ago and how wonderful it still is today. The chalet team were really exceptional as not only did they keep serving wonderful food all week but they seemed to be constantly cheerful and friendly - something which really helps to rub off on your guests, even old ones like us! Your daughters are amazing - they talk to the guests without any apprehension or discomfort and always seemed to be working hard! They are a real credit to you two as their parents and the way you have brought them up. So you will gather that as first time visitors to SME, we were hugely impressed by the whole operation and had a fantastic week. I was delighted with what I personally managed to achieve in the week and only wish I'd found SME 20 years ago!!

John N., Scotland (2011 season)

The Monashee Traverse was totally awesome. The peaks that we summited, the powder we skied in late May, the great time will not soon be forgotten. Like all your trips you challenged us, pushed us hard and in the end we all were better for it. If ski tourers want adventure, I can't think of a better guide than you to challenge them.

I can't wait to get up to Durrand Glacier again and count me in as a regular traverse attendee. I can't think of a better way to spend late April or May then the adventures one gets on your traverses. See you soon. Have an awesome summer.

Kent K., Colorado (2010 season)

I wanted to thank you once again for my fabulous week at the Durrand Glacier. This winter was extremely busy and SME was the light at the end of the tunnel. I'm happy to report that you guys lived up to all my expectations, - and more! The location of your operation is simply breathtaking. Although physically demanding the 33,000 vertical feet that we skied was deeply satisfying and highly enjoyable. The week was a true treat.

Matt M., Vancouver (2010 season)

Just a few words to say thank you to all the SME staff, thank you very much! It was a great week, not only for the beautiful places, mountains, glaciers and the fantastic powder snow we found but also because of your kindly attention, the experience of Ruedi and the guides, the unbelievable food prepared by Bruce, the warm and familiar atmosphere in the Durrand Chalet. Coming to Canada to ski at the Durrand Glacier was really an "experience" that will be fixed in our minds for a long time.

We hope to see you again and come with new friends from Italy. Ciao!

Andrea and the Team Italia... Ljuba, Marco, Gabriele, Walter (2010 season)

A quick note to say thanks for another great week at the Durrand. We probably can't really know exactly how hard you work to get us good skiing while staying safe but rest assured we know you did and truly appreciate it. Ruedi, keep being who you are and doing what you do and we will be back again and again.

David B., Helena MT (2010 season)

Ruedi, Thank you so much for giving us a great week of skiing. We all understood the conditions as were amazed at what we were able to ski. We all had a great time and are really looking forward to our next time. We enjoyed experiencing life at the lodge and your warm welcome and interest in our group. You have a wonderful family and team.

Tim F., Calgary (2010 season)

I have been thinking a lot about you after coming home. I'm very impressed with what you are doing in the Selkirk Mountains. It takes a strong vision and firmness. The world needs more people like you.

Hans R., Norway (2010 season)

I just wanted to say that we had a fantastic time on our trip! Incredibly well run, fun the whole way, beautiful country along with great food and hospitality.

Paul B., Ontario (2010 season)

We wanted to thank you very much for a great week! We had a great time and it was really nice to be able to spend time with you both and your beautiful daughters Charlotte and Florina, also Bruce the chef and the rest of your wonderful guests. Thank you also for accommodating our schedule and always making sure we are well looked after. Your attention to detail and hard work does not go unnoticed. We always enjoy meeting your other guests who are very nice, interesting and like minded. We are already excited about next year.

Paul S., Montreal/Bozen (2010 season)

Vielen, vielen Dank nochmals fuer Eure so persoenliche und tolle bewirtung, Eure Gastfreundshaft und Eure Betreuung. Wir haben uns wirklich zuhause gefuelt, obwohl es nicht die Schweizer Berge waren oder die Bayrischen Alpen.

Maria und Markus W., IL (06/07 season)

I want to tell you that my week with you was a most amazing adventure for me. I loved the experience very much and I feel more confident now with my ability to tour and ski. You have a very special place and I enjoyed sharing it with you and the girls and all the great staff and guests.

Susan R., CA (06/07 season)

I wanted to thank you for the wonderful week at the chalet that last week of April. It was a treat to have such an intimate, personal family atmosphere. I feel lucky to have been able to reschedule for that time frame.

Shane H., CO (06/07 season)

Thank you for a wonderful week of skiing in the spectacular Selkirk Mountains. We enjoyed the excellent skiing and the fantastic team of people that you have assembled to make it all possible. We particularly appreciate the professionalism and extraordinary effort that you and Dan made to assess the avalanche risks. The ABS packs are a great invention that we had not seen previously.

Thank you again for the wonderful week. We look forward to our next visit.

Chris S. and Joe G., WA (06/07 season)

Thanks so much for an awesome time. I expected a lot and you blew me away. Good job on the weather too! I enjoyed every aspect of your program and accommodations. Awesome chef and top notch work by the guides too.

Greg S., CO (06/07 season)

Thank you so much for what was one of the best trips I've ever done. You run a wonderful operation - very professional, from accommodations to guiding to food. I think I could have spent 3 month up there!

Jennifer S., CO (06/07 season)

"Juste un petit mot pour te dire que j'ai adoré mon expérience au glacier Durrand et que j'ai été très impressionné par toute l'organisation.

Le site est extraordinaire, les montagnes et la neige étaient parfaites, le guide très professionnel, la nouriture exquise et l'ambiance très sympatique et chaleureuse.

C'est pour moi, et de loin, ma meilleure expérience de montagne et de ski a vie.

Bonne fin de saison et tu peux être certaine que je vais retourner vous voir bientôt."

Carl, Québec (2006)

"Celebrating my 13th trip with Ruedi (since 1991), my 75th birthday... and my retirement from the intense weeks at SME which have been one of the most exhilarating experiences of my entire life. Thank you, and congratulations, Ruedi and Nicoline, for creating this unique universe of ruggedness and civilization."

Phillipe Dunoyer, Colorado (2005)

"Best vacation ever - got a suntan, ate gourmet meals, great company, slept 10 hrs/day, shopped and a bit of skiing on the side too."

Nancy Jacklin, British Columbia

"What an extraordinary and beautiful week we had. Life does not get any better than exploring on skis, high mountains, eating delicious food, good conversation and sleeping under eiderdown in a lovely cozy chalet. Thank you very much Ruedi! We continually appreciated your skill and were very glad to simply trust your experience and follow you to all sorts of beautiful places. We are sure to be back."

Monica and Michael Lehner, New Hampshire

"Thank you for an exciting week of ski-mountaineering and great hospitality. Skiing will never be the same when compared to the last 7 days of skiing ice-falls, climbing 2 peaks a day and skiing over 5000 ft. of vertical each day."

Karen and Jim Bell, Yukon

"Thank you Ruedi for giving us the confidence to ski between the crevasses without fear and enjoy the snow. The descent of Ruth Glacier ranks as one of the best runs of my 37 years of skiing. The views were spectacular and the experience was better than I ever could have expected. To finish the day in a hot sauna and shower is as civilized as the wine with the gourmet meals. I look forward to coming back again."

Michael Slankovitch, California

"The most demanding and exhilarating skiing I've ever done. Indelible memories: lunch on a crystal calm midday at the very top ridge of Eagle Peak, an adrenaline pumping ride down the Concordia Icefall, meandering through bus-sized seracs, 2600 feet down Juliana Glacier and into Kaleidoscope in the sun, and everyday the snow was extraordinary. Thank you for your leadership and knowledge and for showing us all the magical powder kingdom to its fullest."

Peter Roman, Washington

"Fantastic week! Sun, snow, wind, deep powder and steep slopes in addition to fantastic cooks! I've visited many European Huts in the Alps! Great to have one in my back yard. Keep the purity and tradition - it makes the Durrand very special."

Fred Martwick, California

"Thanks for a fantastic week that far exceeded our wildest dreams! We hope to see you again soon - skiing in the Selkirks!"

Rich and Lisa Cook

"Thanks SME for an unforgettable week! We have been in the mountains skiing before, but never like this. It's amazing that there is so much to see and learn. What a special place Ruedi and Nicoline have created for so many people's dreams."

Ruth Wade, Colorado

"One memorable run after the other. I leave the mountains, and Ruedi's gift to all of us, with renewed spirit and strength for the challenges that lay ahead. We are all blessed to have this encounter with the wilderness. Ruedi and his staff provide an element of comfort in the midst of this "nature hit" that is so appreciated. I look forward to my return."

John Emery, California

"The only thing more amazing than a run down the Durrand North Face is to return to a deck with fresh baked pita and home made hummus."

Miles Epstein, New Mexico

"The single best day of skiing of my life was out of the Moloch Hut up Mt. Graham, down Graham Glacier. We could see Mt. Sir Donald and beyond. Thanks to all who made this day and many others possible."

Paul Doherty, California

"I am positively honored to spend time with Ruedi and crew during this fabulous week of sunshine, steeps and deeps. Almost 40000 feet of great turns this week. SME knows how to challenge a person to their limits and reveal the glories of life. Those who love to ride or ski, like me, will be back."

Tobin Booth, Washington

"Thank you to all the staff at Durrand Glacier for yet another wonderful powder week of skiing. This place challenges the body and renews the spirit. The mountain scenery and copious amounts of powder cannot be surpassed. You folks have a great life here and provide a great product. Thanks again."

Dave Sparks Colorado

"In 32 years of skiing I've found myself in some pretty amazing places. This place tops the list for sure - not just the spectacular high-alpine terrain, flowing glaciers, ice-falls and gnarly crags, but also the attitude, true love and respect for the mountains. I loved the food, the chalet itself, the photos on the walls, the giggles of Charlotte and Florina. This place attracts an amazing assortment of people, from all walks of life who all share a common passion for the mountains and the willingness to challenge themselves. Thanks to everyone for a great time and warm gemuetlichkeit."

Mark Tribes, New York

"Can't find words enough to describe what this experience has meant to us. We've discovered our strengths, worked on our weaknesses - definitely pushed and expanded our boundaries. Top notch hospitality. The Durrand Glacier area is a little piece of heaven. Thank you all for this most wonderful experience."

Marilyn and Doug Warne, Alberta

"Another great trip to SME (my 6th). Have already had the "when can I come again" talk with my wife and I haven't left yet. Good stability and light snow makes for unbelievable ski lines! I've skied more 40 degree plus lines in the past week than in 15 years of back country skiing."

Chris and Madeline West, Colorado

"Hi Ruedi, I know that you have ascended and skied a lot of meters/feet... As a person who has shared a tiny, minuscule portion of that total, I must say that every foot was memorable. So my thanks to you for your persistence, ingenuity and forsight to make Durrand Glacier Lodge what it is today, as well as your leadership to make mountain travel so memorable. May you experience many more years of healthy love of the outdoors."

Gordon Konantz

"In 25 years of backcountry skiing throughout the mountain ranges of Europe, Alaska, Canada and the western US, my annual week at the Durrand Chalet has clearly been the highlight. No where else has ever come close to the winning combination of amazing location, fantastic snow, top notch hospitality and unparalleled guiding expertise."

"For the past ten seasons Ruedi has led our group of friends through challenging terrain and down world class descents with confidence, skill and safety. In addition to having more fun and powder turns in one week that I ever thought possible I have also come away from these trips with a stronger friendship and deeper respect for Ruedi, Nicoline and the entire staff at SME. They have clearly perfected, and happily share, a balance of backcountry comfort, winter pleasure and ski mountaineering safety."

Dave Nettle, California

"Why do I ski at the Durrand Glacier? I have been skiing at Durrand Glacier at least once a year since 1990. The skiing in the rugged terrain is excellent. It's a true alpine experience and is augmented by the comfortable and hospitable Durrand Chalet and the nearby Moloch Hut. I have also taken part in a number of ski mountaineering adventures with Ruedi Beglinger, who's guiding is unsurpassed in my opinion."

Jack McGhee

"I have skied with Selkirk Mountain Experience on more than 20 trips, including numerous weeks at the Durrand Glacier, a Monashee ski traverse, and a ski mountaineering expedition to the Wrangell-St. Elias Range in Alaska. I have been consistently impressed by the mountaineering knowledge and expertise of Ruedi Beglinger and the professionalism of his assistant guides. At the Durrand Glacier Chalet, Selkirk Mountain Experience runs an overall first-class operation that caters to the adventurous and fit backcountry skier. There are now many guiding companies in North America, but I will continue to choose Selkirk Mountain Experience for backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering."

W. Conrad Liles, Washington

"Over the past six years, my husband and I have skied with Ruedi in the Selkirks and Alaska. We are drawn back every year to the awesome terrain, powder snow, gourmet food, remarkable hospitality, and impeccable organization and professionalism of every SME trip. More importantly, we recognize that the privilege and challenge of skiing in such wild terrain carries with it an inherent risk that simply cannot be eliminated. Ruedi's exemplary leadership, broad experience, and vigilant attention to safety have been demonstrated in many thousands of skier days to hundreds of guests who return year after year for a reason. When our unborn son is old enough to spend a month with Grandma, we'd like to ski Mount Logan... but only if Ruedi Beglinger will be our guide."

Katie and Jim Gill, Colorado

"The Selkirk Experience lets you enjoy the rugged remoteness of the entire mountain-range with only 15 other people while you are being pampered and indulged as good as it can get. The fantastic skiing lures you into it; the quiet, heavy snow-packed setting completely convinces you, and the cozy family-style atmosphere captures you. Attention! Once you try this extraordinary combination, you don't want to live without it anymore!"

Jutta Kern

"Dear SME,

We want to let you know how much we enjoy your winter ski mountaineering program. Since 1992 we have been coming to the Durrand Glacier Chalet for a wonderful week of backcountry skiing. This year will be our 10th trip and we continue to return because of the high quality and professionalism we have come to expect from the guides and staff. We consider ourselves to be experienced backcountry skiers (getting in about 100 days a season) and understand that there is an inherent risk to the sport. The training, qualifications, and experience of the guides at SME is of the highest quality we have seen. We trust Ruedi and his guides to provide us with a quality experience that puts safety first. The point of this is to let you know in spite of the accident last winter, we support your program and believe the safety of your guests is your #1 priority and always has been. We are looking forward to spending another week with you in February."

Matt and Susanne Hoggard

Arriving here for the first time rendered me speechless. The rawness of the setting make me very emotional and humble. Having 3 guides maximized our appreciation of the terrain in every direction. Thank you for living your vision and sharing it with world.

Helen and Chris, Canmore (July, 2015)

So on my 28th visit to SME and the very best "private national park" in Canada run by the every present Beglinger family... I am very happy to report that all is in order and the magical adventure of knowing this place and these people continues and is still over the top amazing.

Doug, Canmore (September, 2015)

This has been a unique and wondrous holiday for me: staying in such a beautiful, welcoming, luxurious chalet with gourmet food amidst this paradise of mountain wilderness with no other people! Thank you.

Christine, Victoria, BC (July, 2014)

After waiting to make this trip of 2 years I am happy to say it lived up to my expectations and more. The family were the perfect hosts, the meals spectacular, the girls as guides were competent, friendly and hard working. Beglinger family you have one of the most spectacular destination hikes out there. Thank you from the bottom of my hiking boots.

Sandy, Calgary (August, 2014)

We were delighted everyday by the warm hospitality, fabulous food and some of the best hiking experiences any of us has had. We're now inspired to become stronger hikers so we can try out some of the more intrepid hikes nex time! We fell in love with this place and will plot and plan (& train) our way back here. Thank you.

Caroline, Nancy & Margaret, Vancouver (August, 2014)

Thanks for all your hard work building these amazing trails in this most beautiful part of the world. All of you do an excellent job creating a professional yet home-like atmosphere for your guests. My husband and I loved the hiking, wildlife viewing, botanizing and alpine yoga we were able to do during our too short stay.

Jenny and Ian, Victoria, BC (August, 2013)

Yet another great trip to the Durrand - the best hiking ever. See you again soon.

Jane and Alan, Calgary (August, 2012)

This has been my seventh time here and I am already looking forward to number eight. Thanks ever so much for everything. Everyone has been great.

Daniel, WA (September, 2012 )

We just can't stop talking about what an AMAZING experience we all had at the lodge!! Our favourite lodge in 6 years of backcountry hiking BY FAR! Everything was absolutely perfect!! Thanks again soooo much - I really do believe it was a life-changing and great soul-enriching adventure for us all!!

Dawn B., Calgary (Summer 2013)

We compliment Ruedi, Nicoline and each of the staff for making our experience truly memorable in every aspect.

Burke and Hanneke, Vancouver (Summer 2010)

We had three marvelous days when we stayed at the Durrand Glacier Lodge in July. Beautiful weather, one of the nicest spots on earth I've ever been and wonderful hikes. Thanks to the good care of your cook, the Beglinger family and all the guides we, the four Dutch, had a great time.

Ans vH., The Netherlands (Summer 2010)

We want to thank you with all our heart for this wonderful week in the mountains with you. The atmosphere in your little paradise makes it a very special place, which we will always remember fondly and to which we will be drawn back.

Frederike A., Montreal (Summer 2010)

What a wonderful week. We enjoyed it immensely. The Beglingers are such great hosts and Ruedi has laid out such great trails. It was wonderful to hear no sounds other than waterfalls and laughter. This will be my last such adventure at age 85?? But maybe again next year at age 86!!

Cam M., Calgary (Summer 2010)

Hello Nicoline, Bruce, Paula and everyone,

I just wanted to thank you for one of the best experiences of my life last weekend. It was unforgettable and the scenery indescribable! Your hospitality was exceptional and thanks to Bruce I'm sure I gained weight even though I hiked extensively each day.

I'm sure I will be seeing you all again.

Once again - many thanks!

Tami C., Calgary (08 season)

... I was reminded of my awesome (truly awe filled) hike up to Tumbledown Lake and how grateful I am to you who provided that opportunity for me.

Temple M., VI (07 season)

Highlights from a family reunion at the Durrand Glacier:

... Fetching ice from the glacier... watching my three little girls charge tirelessly up the mountain... Unstructured time for body, mind, spirit... Drinking out of a mountain stream... hiking to the glacier and touching it... Seeing mountain goats... Collapsing on lounger on deck after hike...

Bascom family, OR (07 season)

Thank you hardly seems adequate for the wonderful 3 days of hospitality at the Durrand Glacier Chalet. It was a joy for me to see the expressions on my hiking friends upon returning from the day's hikes. This was especially true for the seven gals who had not hiked with our group in the past, or, in some cases, been in a helicopter or hiked in the back country. I heard comments like "how do you ever explain that experience to someone who has never hiked to the top of a mountain?" I don't know if your were in the chalet when Donna I. (who has hiked with the group since the beginning) walked in after the first day to exclaim "that was one of the best days of my life". Both hiking guides were exceptional and so was the food.

Joanne R., WV (07 season)

Selkirk Mountain Experience. Clearly the best hiking in Canada. Our trip started in Calgary... the highlight of this trip is a helicopter flight followed by four days and nights at an exclusive isolated mountain chalet at 1,938 meters elevation in the heart of the Selkirk Mountains surrounded by the best hiking in Canada.

Bob and Gail Douglas, Ontario (07 season)

This was one of those rare periods in which there was no other place I wanted to be or other thing I wanted to do.

Don Martinusen, Washington, D.C.

"Just a note from John & Carol Howard saying thank you for the four days we shared with you at the chalet. The weather, scenery and hikes were splendid; Nicoline's meals were excellent; Stephanie was a charming and competent guide; the girls - Charlotte, Florina and Corrina - were adorable and well-behaved; the helicopter rides were thrilling; and we were so fortunate to be your only guests for those days.

Before we came, we were a little concerned about the cost of the Selkirk Mountain Experience, but we very quickly saw that it is a wonderful value, a unique experience that we would highly recommend to anyone who loves the mountains. The four of us felt it was a perfect alpine vacation!

Many thanks to Ruedi and Nicoline for what you have created there in the meadows beside Durrand Glacier. You have our admiration. We had a wonderful time!"

John & Carol Howard, Oregon

"Four years of dreaming of the perfect place to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversaries culminated with our choice to visit the Selkirk Mountain Experience at Durrand Glacier. The dream has been fulfilled! Our expectations of the perfect place have been met. We have hiked like we've never hiked before, eaten wonderfully prepared and delicious meals, and enjoyed the company of a terrific group of hikers."

Len and Laurie Shrimpton, Alberta Bob and Lynn Gapes, Ontario

"Magnificent trails, incomparable scenery and a great lodge. But the most attractive feature of the Durrand Chalet has been the warmth, friendliness and helpfulness of its staff. That, especially, has made this an unforgettable holiday."

Margaret and Andrew Murray, BC

"Unique scenery, great trails and hiking together the guiding and cooking has made this one of our most enjoyable lodge experiences."

Nelleke and Frans Burger, Alberta

"Many thanks for the very enjoyable visit. We were greatly impressed with the lovely lodge and magnificent trail system - a great boon to us geriatrics. Thanks for adjusting to our pace and making it nice for us. It was great to revisit this country after 40 years and to meet Ruedi."

Nelleke and Frans Burger, Alberta

"Thanks for everything. The stay at the chalet was the summit of our holidays in the Rocky Mountains. You showed us the best places of the beautiful surroundings of the chalet. We enjoyed the hikes very much and also the meals. Hopefully until the next time."

Annette and Hans, Holland

Just wanted to shoot a note of thanks your way for the absolutely fantastic adventure in the Bernina/Glarnerland. Having sadly missed the Berner Overland trip two years ago my dad and I were completely revved up for this year's trip, and it was absolutely fantastic. I know the last minute itinerary alterations weren't the easiest thing, but we couldn't have asked for a better experience.

For the great jokes, the beautiful photos, the amazing destinations and the beautiful powder snow – thank you!

Already looking forward to next time.

Dave Mc, Bernina-Toedi trip 2014

I have been meaning to write you to thank you for the awesome trip on the Haute Route. It was really fun going in a small group with you as the guide. I learned a lot and had a blast.

You are truly an alpine guide extraordinaire. It was clearly evident on the trip. I look forward to seeing you this year at SME.

Kent Kasica, July 2008

I now have a little more time to put pen to paper and say hi. First of all thanks for the best action-adventure-vacation a skier could have. I have a great photo of us on the Zumsteinspitze serves as my screen-saver on my laptop. Everyone that sees it freaks out and comments on how cool it is. It was simply a great day full of challenges, manageable risk and incredible skiing. I told my mom it was one of the best days of my life. So thank you once again for the great experience.

You are truly an alpine guide extraordinaire. It was clearly evident on the trip. I look forward to seeing you this year at SME.

Johnny Keefe, CO (06/07 season)

I now have a little more time to put pen to paper and say hi. First of all thanks for the best action-adventure-vacation a skier could have. I have a great photo of us on the Zumsteinspitze serves as my screen-saver on my laptop. Everyone that sees it freaks out and comments on how cool it is. It was simply a great day full of challenges, manageable risk and incredible skiing. I told my mom it was one of the best days of my life. So thank you once again for the great experience.

"I wish to thank you for my fantastic trip with SME at the Haute Route this spring! I had a fantastic time, with the best guiding, itinerary and routes that I could imagine. Ruedi and David are truly fantastic guides!

It is beyond my imagination how SME can not only put together such a great itinerary with variations on the "normal" H.R., but to modify the itinerary day by day to suit the existing snow conditions, weather and client abilities. SME's knowledge of the routes, peaks, terrain and huts, combined with guiding ability allow the trip to be tailored for the best variations and experiences.

In our first 5 days, with clear weather and sunny conditions, we were moving early in the good snow, fantastically summiting 4000m peaks daily, and ending the days before the snow softened dangerously. When the weather cooled and we encountered such good powder snow on Mt. Blanc, we were able to enjoy the conditions into the afternoon on high and wonderful slopes of the Valee Blanche. SME's ability to have us safely complete the Haute Route down the Mer de Glace once the weather changed to storm and pea-soup fog was impressive!

But most impressive of all was how we were able to complete the middle section of the route, while escaping the warm temperature dangers from no overnight freezing and wet snow avalanches. By adapting to more conservative routes and traveling quickly and early in the changed conditions we safely completed the route, even as we watched other groups not adapt and expose themselves to danger, or quit the route.

My only misgiving is that recent climate change and warm weather has decreased the alpine glaciers and accelerated snowmelt, so that the glacier ski runs are shorter, the low altitude skiing has suffered, and ski areas are closing so early in the spring.

I will be joining SME to travel to the Swiss, Italian and French mountains at one of your wonderful 4000 m peak trips in the future. Will there be any way to include a few extra days, either just before or after the 4000 m trip to ski and climb with SME when there in the future?

I will be contacting you this fall, once I can schedule with a few friends to come and ski at the Durrand Glacier Chalet this winter.

John Morrone, Colorado (June 1, 2005)

"My twenty year nostalgia for ski touring in the Swiss Alps suddenly found "fulfillment"... and more, in every respect: the mountain glacier scenery, the challenge of peak climbs, the heavenly powder, and... the refined and civilized haven of the chalet: the cozy and neat Swiss décor, the music and the fabulous meals. The "Selkirk Mountain Experience" is an experience in the highest quality of human living. It is a lifting thought to know that it is there to be enjoyed again."

Philippe Dunoyer, Colorado

"The first mountain ski touring experience of my life has become the outdoor experience of my life. In order to find anything as good or better I will have to come back."

Tim Heslip, Alberta

"What can you say in a few words about a week of mountaineering in Ruedi's beautiful Selkirks? ... How about - fabulous food, views, photos, hiking, companionship. This was a week I will always remember - the best climbing available from a mountain hut, with a great guide. I will be back for sure for a ski or climb."

Peter Sutherland, Alberta

"Thanks to Ruedi's magnificent guiding I enjoyed the awesome privilege of sitting on the summit of Mt. Moloch. Absorbing the vast perspectives and deep silence of this place was an other worldly experience. I will always be grateful to the rock and of course Ruedi for this transcendent glimpse of nature's beauty."

John Kerr, Ontario

"Mt. Graham was a breathtaking island of heaven, which made me feel as part of a privileged few who actually view such beauty in a lifetime."

Francois Dunoyer, France

"A distinct pleasure to accompany Ruedi on the Fridolin East Face descent. After six days I am once again having a hard time believing where I am, what I am doing.

This place is beyond words. Thank you."

Norman Bardeen, Colorado

"Thanks SME. You showed me how to climb higher than I thought was possible."

Lisa Coyne

"The mountains have refueled us for the rest of life."

Jeff and Val Rothen, New Hampshire

"Time stopped for 7 days in my life. Time to reflect, to learn, to play, to rest. This grand mountain experience will be relived in our hearts and minds and it will rest in our souls. Thank you."

Teanna Tullis, Washington

"Mt. Graham was a breathtaking island of heaven, which made me feel as part of a privileged few who actually view such beauty in a lifetime."

Francois Dunoyer, France

"Wow, this week vastly surpassed my high expectations. Highest accolades for doing what you do so well. A most enjoyable thrilling week... Thanks for creating such a wonderful operation."

Lisa Freundlich, California

"For showing me unsurpassed beauty.
For returning adventure to my life.
Thank you Ruedi and Nicoline. "

Rob Wishart, BC

"The sights were splendid, the experiences remarkable, the food - absolutely superb. Thanks for sharing your Shangri-La with us - the peace, the serenity, the quiet! We hope it will not change. Good luck."

The Batyckys, Alberta

"This was one of those rare periods in which there was no other place I wanted to be or other thing I wanted to do."

Don Martinusen, Washington, D.C.

"What a hidden jewel in the Selkirks! The scenery is superb, everybody is so friendly and the meals are outstanding. Thank you for a wonderful first visit. We'll be back."

Norm and Louise Capper

"My first trip and so impressive words escape me! Knowing this place exists will keep me sane."

Bill Melton, New Mexico