Early season skiers and riders itching to burst into the backcountry can get free lodging with cat skiing at Revelstoke Mountain Resort. The resort, which usually opens in late November, is running the cat ski special plus an additional ski and stay package for inbounds skiers prior to Christmas holidays.

Cat skiers can get free lodging at Nelsen Lodge from opening day until Dec. 22. Rates for the early season cat ski package, which includes one night of lodging and one day of guided cat skiing, start at $400 CAN per person, based on double occupancy.

"December cat skiing is highlighted by consistency of snowfall," Dan Sculnick, manager of the Revelstoke Outdoor Centre, told OnTheSnow. "It's a great month because it's snow-loading time with day after day of snowfall."

Cat trips get skiers into South, Montana, and Kokanee Bowls for a full day of exploring. The guided tours do not require a 45-minute cat ride to get to the terrain. Skiers and riders hop the gondola to the Stoke Chair for a warm up run that descends to the cat for a 15-minute ride to bowls. "It's true backcountry sitting adjacent to inbounds skiing with open meandering meadows dropping into trees and glades," Sculnick described the terrain.

Reservations for cat skiing with free lodging should be made by phone. One day of cat skiing during regular season costs $400 CAN per person.

A second early season ski and stay package at Nelsen Lodge is available for those who want to ski inbounds instead. The Nelsen Lodge First Tracks Ski and Stay package runs from opening day until Dec. 25. Rates for the package start at $131 CAN per person, based on double occupancy. The package, which can be booked online, includes accommodations and one adult lift ticket per person.

More information. Or call 250-814-5000.