Gostlin Keefer Lake Lodge

Guest Information Guide

Welcome to Gostlin Keefer Lake Lodge. Nestled deep in the heart of the Southern Monashee Mountain Range on 8.5 Acres, our lodges and Infrastructure stand testament to one man's dream of bringing luxury accommodation and phenomenal terrain to the skiing and riding public. Jeff Gostlin has been a ski guide for over 20 years and has assembled a team that brings the best the industry has to offer adjacent to the best in five-star backcountry lodge life. Combining that with over 35,000 hectares of terrain you are sure to find the “best run” of your entire life, here at Keefer Lake. As you get settled in your room, please take some time to have a read through the following pages. Along with important safety information, this guide includes information about meeting times, the cat experience and what to expect from your stay here at Gostlin Keefer Lake. Every one of us truly hopes this is the best cat skiing vacation you will ever have.

Table of Contents

01
Emergency Information (Fire Procedures and Muster Points)
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02
Lodge Life
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03
Housekeeping
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04
Hot tub, sauna & spa services
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05
Games Room
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06
The Cat Ski Program (A day in the life...)
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07
Our Snow Cats
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08
The Terrain
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09
Safety Equipment
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10
Live Local, Source Local
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11
Shuttle Service
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12
Summer Program
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13
Rebooking your trip
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14
Staff Profiles
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15
Guest Feedback
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16
Tipping and Gratuities
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Fire Procedures and Muster Points

In the event of a fire in any of the buildings, you will hear an audible alarm as well as see a visual alarm for those guests with hearing impairment. At this time, you will gather warm outdoor clothing and exit the building via the nearest fire exit. DO NOT use the elevator. Our muster point for any building evacuation is located at the main yard entrance where Keefer Lake Forest Service Road enters our yard. See map below. At that time, the lodge manager will do a head count and determine if every guest and staff on property is accounted for. Once you have left the building, you are requested to remain at the muster point until an all clear has been called or until further instructions are given.

Lodge Life

Welcome to living your dream vacation. We have two amazing lodges built with guest comfort and satisfaction in mind. The 9-guest room Black Bear Lodge was built in 2016 from a vision Jeff Gostlin had of providing the ultimate experience to his cat skiing clients. Followed closely behind that build was the 16-guest room Pinnacles Lodge, finished in Feb 2018. Even while nestled deep in the mountains his goal was to provide outstanding accommodation and a fantastic facility. His attention to detail in designing and building the Black Bear and Pinnacles lodges can be felt from the heated floors to the locally sourced live edge bar top. These are just a few of the details that we all hope will make your stay with us the best yet! While you stay with us here at Gostlin Keefer Lake Lodge, we would like to bring a few things to your attention.

   We are a 100% Off-Grid facility up here. That means we have absolutely no connection to the outside world through telephone lines, power lines or municipal water and sewer connections. We create our own power and deal with our own wastes exactly like a small city would. This also means a few small adjustments on your part to help the system be the most effective it can be.

Power is in finite supply. We will not run out, but your cooperation helps reduce our power consumption. And like everything on our planet, it’s the small things that matter. Things like remembering to turn the lights off when you leave your room or not leaving computers and phones plugged in and charging beyond the time needed. All these little things help us provide a greener off grid experience for all our guests.

Our power is generated through 3 sources: Solar, Hydro, and Diesel/Propane burning generators.

We have 4 solar arrays, set up in 2 large panel banks that can effectively provide up to 17 Kw of power on sunny days. During the spring and summer when our power consumption drops, we are usually drawing all our power needs from the Solar Arrays alone.

Situated on top of the creek on the east side of the main property is a small building that houses our Micro Hydro facility. This system taps into a reservoir fed pipe system that powers a jet stream micro-Hydro turbine generator. The power we generate off this system is mainly in use when the creek flow is enough to fill the reservoir located up the cat road behind the shop. Typically, the stream levels fall below the levels required in late summer and again in January when they freeze completely.

Located in our Generator House is a 60Kw Izuzu Diesel Generator and a 30Kw Koehler Propane Generator. These are our main power supplies during winter months and they essentially run non-stop during this time. Thankfully, the Diesel generator is designed to run continually, and we use the Propane generator as a back-up during service times.

A few other reminders that we would like you to keep in mind as you enjoy your stay here at Keefer Lake Lodge.

Please be gentle when closing doors, they will slam if pulled too hard or left to swing shut. Quiet Time in the lodge is 10 pm so please be respectful of your neighbors. No outside footwear in either of the lodges and no ski boots on the stairs at all, they are so slippery! The floors are all heated and its wonderfully comfortable to walk around in your socks or slippers. Your room and the lodge are all heated through a series of glycol loops inside the concrete floors. These loops are filled with a mixture of glycol and water and the Black Bear Lodge is heated by 2 wood burners that are fed 24hrs a day in the winter. The Pinnacles Lodge is heated the same way but with propane burners instead of wood. The thermostat in your room and around the lodges are locked out to prevent the temperatures from being changed. The reason for this is that a system this large takes quite a while to balance and regulate. It can take 2-3 days for the temperature to settle if adjusted. Feel free to open your window if you find it warm and let us know if you are cold and we can get you more blankets for your bed.

You may have noticed the signs in all of our bathrooms, “Nothing goes down the toilet that hasn’t gone through your body first, except this toilet paper. Our septic system thanks you.” These signs are necessary as we are on a closed septic system up here at Gostlin Keefer Lake Lodge and our proximity to Keefer Lake means we must be diligent in keeping anything out of the system that may cause it to fail. This includes sanitary products, Kleenex/tissue, and condoms. Please use the waste receptacles provided.

WIFI and telephone service are provided through a satellite connection. We have a finite supply of internet data available and as such, we ask that you do not stream/download movies, videos, or music. The use of Facebook and Instagram clips create the same draw on our data supply so please wait to upload all those amazing photos until you are back in town!

Telephone Number: 778-760-5877

If you become ill at all during your stay, please let the Lodge Manager know as soon as possible. We do ask that anyone who becomes sick to self-isolate in their room as viruses can spread quite quickly in this intimate environment. We can organize food to be delivered to your room and if necessary, transportation to the nearest town with a doctor for treatment or testing.

Housekeeping

When you head out for your day in the mountains, our hard-working little housekeeping elves will be scurrying around to get your room and all lodges clean and shiny for your return.

Housekeeping will typically make-up your room every day which includes making your bed, emptying the garbage, and taking away any dirty dishes. If you wish to forgo this service, please use the ‘Do Not Disturb’ door hanger in your room and no-one will enter your room.

Our housekeepers will respect your belongings when in the room and work around any items left on the bed or any areas of the room.

If you require fresh towels at all during your stay, please ask or leave your dirty ones on your shower/bathtub floor and we will replace them for you.

If you require an extra pillow, blanket or maybe a hairdryer during your stay, please ask any lodge staff member and they will be able to get these items to you.

If you need personal laundry done during your stay, please let one of our staff members or the lodge manager know, and we will be happy to put a load through for you.

Hot Tub, Sauna and Spa Services

Hot tub is open for your use every day from 3pm until 10pm. We ask that you do not take glass onto the hot tub deck, as broken glass means a complete shut down and drain of the system for safety reasons. Please ask your server or bartender for plastic cups for your drinks. You can use the handheld radio provided so that you can order drinks from the bar without even leaving the tub! Also, cannonballing into the hot tub is frowned upon for obvious safety reasons.

The Sauna is heated by a wood burning stove and is ready for guest use by the time your snow cat arrives back to Keefer Base. Feel free to keep it burning as hot as you can handle it with the firewood provided under the benches. It is an amazing and relaxing experience that can be enhanced by the light use of water on the rocks.

Please use the hot tub and sauna towels provided. They are in the sauna entrance hall as well as some refreshing lemon water to re-hydrate after your session.

We also offer massage service here at the lodge. Please feel free to use the sign-up sheet located next to the bar in Black Bear Lodge. The spots available fill up quickly so if you are interested, be sure to sign up early.

Games Room

Downstairs in the Black Bear Lodge is our games room. Please feel free to enjoy a game of darts, pool, or foosball. NO drinks on the pool table and when playing the game of Crud, its better if you keep your drinks well away from the playing area! We highly recommend that you play this game at least once during your trip. Jeff is great at explaining the rules, and any number of people can play.

A day (or four) in the life of a cat-skier

Every day

  • 6:30A.M. continental breakfast begins
  • 7:00 - 7:45A.M. hot breakfast is served

First day

  • 8:00A.M. waivers and other legal documents are discussed and signed in the living room/bar area plus safety video. You do not need to be dressed in your outdoor gear for this.
  • 8:45A.M. meet your guides, dressed and ready to go, outside your locker/drying room for safety briefing and avalanche skills training
  • 9:15A.M. cat safety briefing with your driver
  • 9:30A.M. load the cat and the fun begins!
  • 12:00P.M.ish lunch is served in the cat. Each guest has their very own personalized lunch prepared for them by our kitchen team that includes your choice of a soup, sandwiches, homemade baked goods, snacks, fruit, and veggies. We don’t have a set lunch-time stop (unless requested) so you can just grab your bag and dig in for a snack whenever you like. The cat has a large thermos of water and Gatorade so please bring your water bottles with you. We have also provided a special Keefer Lake bottle for you free of charge. If you have dietary requirements and or preferences, please let your kitchen staff know, and we will have a tasty lunch prepared to your liking.
  • 3:15 - 4:00 P.M. return to lodge at the end of the skiing day. Time will depend on time of year and available daylight
  • 3:30 - 4:30 P.M. 4:30 served at the outdoor kitchen (one-hour service with times adjusted based on return of the cats)
  • 4:30 P.M. - 6:00 P.M. ave a refreshing drink, jump in the hot tub, relax in the sauna or get a massage. This is your time to kick back and bask in the opulence of all the lodge has to offer!
  • 6:30 P.M. dinner is served. A delicious three-course meal of our Chefs’ creation awaits your palate.
  • 8:00 P.M. photography slideshow from the day's fun presented in the bar/lounge area

Second (& third) days

  • 8:15A.M. meet your guide by the cat, equipment checks (beacons, packs, skis, radios, H2O bottle ready to go)
  • 8:30A.M. load cat and the fun begins!
  • 12:00P.M.ish lunch is served in the cat.
  • 3:15 - 4:00P.M. return to lodge end of skiing day. Time will depend on time of year and available daylight
  • 3:30-4:30 Apres served at the outdoor kitchen (one-hour service with times adjusted based on return of the cats)
  • 4:30P.M. - 6:00 P.M. have a refreshing drink, jump in the hot tub, relax in the sauna or get a massage. This is your time to kick back and bask in the opulence of all the lodge has to offer!
  • 6:30P.M. dinner is served. A delicious three-course meal of our Chefs’ creation awaits your palate.
  • 8:00P.M. photography slideshow from the day's fun presented in the bar/lounge area
  • 8:30P.M. if this is your last night, don’t forget to take a walk through the retail store to grab a momento or a gift for someone special so it can be added to your final bill for the morning.

Last Day

*Pack Up your room and leave all luggage and personal belongings outside your room before you head out for the day. Your belongings will be carefully re-located to the downstairs common area in your respective buildings so that you can use the showers and changerooms after you return from your last epic day on the cat.

**Ensure you bring down your preferred method of payment with you to breakfast so you can settle up your bill with the Lodge Manager. Your bill will be ready and waiting for you to review on the wine barrel by the bar. And don’t worry, you can still grab one last drink before you head out at the end of the day!

  • 8:00A.M. meet your guide by the cat, equipment checks (beacons, packs, skis, radios, H2O bottle)
  • 8:10A.M. load the cat and the fun begins!
  • 12:00P.M.ish lunch is served in the cat.
  • 3:00P.M. return to lodge end of skiing day.
  • 3:15P.M. apres served in bar area
  • 4:00P.M. the shuttle arrives and it’s time to start packing up and saying your goodbyes

Snow Cats

We have the pleasure of offering you the best snow cat experience in the business. We have two new Pisten Bully 400`s equipped with custom Passenger cabs give you the most relaxing and comfortable ride in the cat skiing industry. When Jeff sat down with Kelowna based Aqualu to design the cab, he spared no expense in bringing every little detail to this cabin. There are no bad seats on this ride, with everyone forward facing and decked out in soft leather, you`ll feel like you are in a luxury sedan as you relax on your ride back up the mountain. The heated glove dryers located above your head in your own individual cubby also holds helmets and extra gear. Really all you need to bring to the cat is your stoke and we`ve got all the extras covered!!

The Terrain

Terrain covers ove 40,000 Hectares of forested and semi forested land. Our runs at this time are located on 2 mountains within our tenure, Mt Yeoward and The Dome. As a new operation, we have just begun to take a bite out of all the available terrain our tenure has to offer. From Sub Alpine to valley floor, we can offer our guests a little bit of something for everyone. Steep trees? We got that! Open bowls, yep that too! Gladed trees, drops and features, we’re sure to have you covered for whatever your heart desires up here. With an average seasonal snowfall of 18m (59ft), an average total snowpack depth of 300-400cm (10-14ft) and a typical winter temperature of -4.5C we are quite sure you won’t run out of amazing lines to discover and shred! Your days can range in elevation from 2125-1100m (6972-3608ft) which is a lot of vertical at your fingertips to explore and conquer. As we have no beginner terrain up here at Keefer Lake, we know you have a strong intermediate to advanced skiing/riding ability and can truly experience all that our beautiful mountains have to offer. Have a look at our 3D terrain Map in the games room and talk to some staff, I think most of us have some amazing stories and photos to share about how we’ve had the best skiing/riding days of our lives up here. We promise you won’t leave here without your own amazing stories too!!

Safety Equipment

The following is a brief overview of the safety equipment that you will be provided with on your trip. The use and deployment of these items will be explained in detail during your safety orientation. All guests are responsible for the use of the equipment after it has been issued to them. Please inform your guides immediately if you have any issues with your gear or it becomes damaged during your trip. Guests will be responsible for the replacement cost of items if they are lost while in your use.

Avalanche Airbag Backpack – This is a backpack that is equipped with a deployable avalanche air bag system. This system is designed to be deployed in the event of an avalanche and will assist the wearer by maintaining float so that they stay on the top surface of an avalanche debris field.

Tracker 2 Transceiver – This is a BCA avalanche beacon that will transmit a signal to responders in the event of an avalanche burial or can be switched to receive signal so that the wearer can assist in a search for missing persons

Collapsible 3-meter Probe – This is the tool used to pinpoint search after a beacon signal is found. It allows searchers to more accurately concentrate digging for buried persons.

Collapsible avalanche shovel – This is the tool used to dig out buried persons in the snow.

Two-way radio – This is your communication tool while out on Mountain

Radio Use

THINK, WAIT, SPEAK

  1. Think- Think about what you want to say, keep it short and simple.
  2. Wait – Wait a few seconds to see if anyone else is already speaking on the radio, when you talk over someone else’s transmission they are unable to hear the person originally speaking to them, this is called “walking on a transmission”
  3. Speak – Speak clearly, slowly and concisely. Remember that you are not having a discussion you are relaying information. Keep your voice level moderate so that the other person can hear you without having to turn their radio up or down, do not yell or whisper.

TO, FROM, TO, ON (what channel i.e., one or repeater)

  1. TO – This is the person you are trying to reach
  2. FROM – This is you
  3. TO – This is the person you are trying to reach
  4. ON – This is the channel you are calling on, if the receiver is scanning channels, they are able to then change to the channel you are calling on to ensure you as the transmitter can hear them.

Live Local, Source Local

One of the things we strive for here at Keefer Lake is our dedication to sourcing local. It’s a commitment that we take pretty seriously. We live locally so we try and support our local economy whenever we can. From the duvets that keep you warm at night to the shampoo and body wash that are in the showers. Up and down the Okanagan Valley, we are constantly looking to find something else that we can purchase or support that comes from within our community.

Back to Earth – Coldstream, BC

Hair and Body Products, Room Sprays, Detergents and Cleaners.

Skevik – Vernon, BC

Locally designed and made skis.

Okanagan Spirts – Vernon, BC

Craft Distillery making high quality spirits and liquors

Sundowner Meats – Lumby, BC

Free range beef and pork.

Rouck Brothers Sawmill – Lumby, BC

The source of the majority of the wood used to build both the Black Bear Lodge and Pinnacles Lodges.

Shuttle Service

We have the luxury of being one of the few cat skiing operations that are accessible by regular passenger vehicle in the winter so there are no sled rides or snowcat shuttles necessary to get you to our lodge. Although we highly encourage the use of our shuttle service (and it’s included in the price of your trip), you may choose to rent a vehicle to get to the lodge. Depending on what you would like to do, either option will get you from Kelowna airport in about 2.5 hrs. The shuttle is a comfortable way to get in and out of our backcountry lodge. For large or private groups it can be a fun option, travelling together through the mountains. Please get in touch with the Lodge Manager or Guest Relations Manager to discuss shuttle options.

Summer Programs

It's not called Keefer Lake for nothing and eventually Mother Nature steps in and lets her summer colours shine through. Keefer is such an amazing place in the summertime, you may just want to come back and experience all that the lake has to offer in the warmer months. A few of the things we offer for our summer guests are corporate retreats, family functions, wellness retreats, weddings, hiking adventures, and heli-hiking trips. A few of the activities you can enjoy on the water include boating, fishing, and stand-up paddleboarding. We also have a 9-hole disc golf course, axe throwing and hammock-city for entertainment on dry land. Please ask the lodge manager for more details or contact our Events Management Team at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to book your summer adventure.

Rebooking policy

We have a unique opportunity for you to rebook for next year at the end of your current trip. When you leave here, you will have 7 days to rebook for your current time period at this year’s price. If after those 7 days are up and you haven’t rebooked, those specific days will go back up for sale to the general public. If you then choose to book later on, it will be at next seasons prices. It pays to rebook early here at Keefer, because we have almost all of our seats booked by the end of March for the following season.

Staff Profiles

Guest Feeback

We thrive on hearing about our guests’ experiences up here at Keefer Lake Lodge. We are constantly on a mission to be the best in the industry and we really appreciate hearing about what we are doing well and also areas for improvement. If you are experiencing something that could be improved upon during your stay, please do not hesitate to let us know right away. We would be so disappointed to have a guest leave without ever having the opportunity to turn a situation around for the better and if you prefer to provide your feedback more candidly, the Lodge Manager will be more than happy to speak with you in confidence.

If you would like to leave us a written review or a shout-out to certain staff members that really made your stay exceptional, please sign our guest book on your way out.

The absolute best way to recognize the Keefer Lake Team is to head over to Trip Advisor and leave us a five-star review with some comments of how we made your ski vacation absolutely amazing.

Gratuities

So, you are nearing the end of your most amazing cat skiing/riding trip and you are considering how to show your appreciation for all the hard work that has gone into making this unbelievable experience a reality. Leaving a gratuity is a way for you to share thanks with all the crew. Usually, in the cat-skiing industry tipping is done at the end of the trip as one sum added onto your final bill.

 Here at Keefer Lake, we believe every one of the staff is an integral part of making your experience the very best the industry has to offer, and our tipping pool reflects that. Every single person that works here during your stay ( 30+ people at a time), gets a share of the tips you leave behind.

You will see on your final bill that we have automatically added a 15% gratuity based on the total price of your package, not including incidentals. This number is added as a guideline for our guests who have requested more specific values to go by. This gratuity is completely optional and can be altered to whatever amount you feel comfortable with.

The following is a sample of the gratuities form that we include with your final bill on the morning of check-out. If you are content with the 15% amount that is already applied, check that box and your bill will stay the same. If you want to leave an alternate amount, higher or lower, write your selection in the ‘other amount’ section and we will adjust your bill accordingly.

We sincerely thank-you for your generous acknowledgment of our efforts through the gratuities program.

We aim to be the best out there and we appreciate all of the feedback that you can provide.  If there was anything that we could have done to enhance your experience, please let us know.

All of our team members are vital in what we do and all are included in our tip pool.       The only exception to the tip pool are our massage experts.

Was there a person and/ or people that absolutely made this experience for you?  Please take this opportunity to give specific shout outs to them!

15%

of tour total

Other Amount

percentage of tour total or dollar value

Massage Therapist 1

not included in tip pool

Massage Therapist 2

not included in tip pool