For the second year in a row, Steep-n-Deep Powder Tours and Beyond the Boundaries teamed up to introduce a crew of ladies to the incredible Andes via a unique all-women’s snowboard tour. Ian Gil, founder and guide at Steep-n-Deep; Christine Savage and Mary Walsh, the ladies behind BTBounds; and Iris Lazzareschi, pro snowboarder and experienced backcountry guide headed to the Southern Hemisphere in mid-August to get a dose of winter during the summer months, welcoming a crew of women from all over the US and Canada who were also eager to escape the dog days of summer and score some fresh, Chilean snow.
The 8-day tour started off in Chile’s capital, Santiago, where the crew spent a day exploring the city on foot, learning the history of the area and getting their first taste of the country’s culture. On day two, Farellones, a mountain town nestled in the lower, jagged peaks of The Andes became home for the week. Farellones is the hub between three of Chile’s favorite resorts: La Parva, Valle Nevado, and El Colorado, each offering cruise-y groomers, fun terrain parks, and when snow hits, above-treeline powder stashes that are accessible for days after storms if you have the right guide. After a few days spent scoring turns in the Chilean alpine, the crew made their way to Santiago to celebrate, enjoying traditional Chilean meals at the traditional Chilean time–midnight. (The question as to when the country sleeps has yet to be answered.)
For BTB and SND, the annual trip to Chile is an opportunity to not only take laps and check out new resorts, but to explore a new place via snowboarding. The cities, the culture, and the cuisine are integral parts of this and the BTB/SND tour is focused on how we are can experience all of this via the core of our shared love of cruising down snow-covered mountains. An enormous part of the Chilean experience is what happens after you’re done riding for the day: the brilliant Andes sunsets, refreshing apres pisco sours, the magical Hotel Farellones and its papas duquenos–the time in the mountains is well spent and then it’s off to the coast!
The final few days in the Southern Hemisphere, the crew explored the coastal cities of Valparaiso, Vina del Mar, and Concon. Valparaiso is known for it’s prolific and gorgeous street art. It’s a bustling metro with perfect, sunny weather–a stark contrast to spending time in the mountains. It’s the perfect place to warm up after a dose of winter and offers amazing empanadas, stunning views, and a legendary karaoke scene.
The above photos paint a better picture of the week in Chile, but it’s, of course, best experienced in person! For more information on this epic excursion (two tours coming up in August 2018!), as well as the other camps and tours offered by Beyond the Boundaries and Steep-n-Deep, check out their websites and social accounts: