General FAQ

No worries! This is the perfect place for groups (or couples) to learn how to use specialized backcountry ski equipment and travel through the backcountry. We can create an introduction to backcountry skiing course anytime you would like.  If you feel the need to refresh your backcountry skills this is the place! 

Mono County Search and Rescue Mammoth Lakes — (760)-932-7549.
Call 911 in the event of an emergency. Feel free to call Mike or Tim anytime if you have questions. An orientation folder is located in the yurt with pertinent phone numbers.

Hoover Wilderness Map, Humboldt Toiyabe National Forest Map,, Back Country California’s Eastern Sierra Book. Maps are located in the yurt for your reference. Please respect private property in the summer community of Virginia Lakes. Also, Google Earth is a good resource for terrain and topography.

From our waiver: “I acknowledge that if for any reason, medical or otherwise, I cannot go on the trip I have paid for and it is less than 21 days before my trip date, I am ineligible to receive the 75% credit. I also acknowledge that I cannot receive cancellation credits for weather, etc. over which High Sierra Snowcat has no control.”

Yes. The red PB snowcat is equipped with a BLS trauma bag including oxygen and backboard. A Cascade Toboggan is located on top of the Snowcat for your use in the event of an emergency. 

Dogs are prohibited in the yurt / hut and are discouraged because of the harsh winter conditions outside and the need to melt snow for drinking water.

Guided Trip FAQ

Yes, 4 minimum and 6 maximum. If you would like to add just call us. We can usually accommodate, We try and keep the guide to client ratio at 3:1 and prices as low as possible. I you would like to go from hut to hut the Dunderberg hut only sleeps 6. 

Avalanche Safety (Required)

  • Avalanche beacon (3 antenna, w/ fresh batteries)
  • Avalanche shovel
  • Avalanche probe
  • Avalanche Air Pack (optional)

*We can provide limited avalanche rescue equipment and ski equipment.


  •  Alpine touring or telemark ski equipment, or Splitboard equipment
  • Climbing skins – must cover full width of ski base
  • Helmet (Required)
  • Goggles
  • Medium-sized pack

Recommended Clothing

  • Hardshell, waterproof jacket
  • Softshell jacket
  • Hardshell pants
  • Down or synthetic insulated jacket
  • Synthetic/wool long underwear top
  • Synthetic/wool long underwear bottom
  • 2-3 pairs synthetic/wool socks
  • Light fleece top
  • Warm, waterproof gloves or mittens
  • Lightweight gloves for hiking
  • Warm hat
  • Brimmed hat or visor
  • Neck gaiter/balaclava
  • Comfortable change of clothes for evening

Overnight at Hut

  • Sleeping bag & Pillow,
  • Sheet
  • Headlamp w/ fresh batteries
  • Toiletries, small towel
  • Meds you might need (pain relief, cold, etc.)
  • Earplugs


  • Water bottle 1-2L
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Cell phone and USB cord
  • Camera 
  • Music on your phone (Bluetooth to speakers or iphone plug)

           Don’t short yourself we have the snowcat!

No. The snowcat is used as a tool to transport customers to the best snow and ski terrain. It may be used several times a day, but it really depends on the group abilities, snow conditions, and terrain choices. We may climb a short distance with the snowcat and then climb the remainder with skins. A few of the descents put you 3-5 miles from the yurt and we will pick you up in the snowcat. We use it to move your personal gear from one yurt to another and support day to day operations. The snowcat is also used as a classroom and a place for daily safety briefings. 

Partial/Self-Guided Trip FAQ

We require at least a day of guiding and then you can stay an additional day (or two). When it comes to value and experience you can’t beat the price of our fully guided trips without the hassel. 

$320.00 covers transportation into the yurt. Its a 5 mile and 1000 foot descent back to the winter parking lot at Conway Summit. If you are interested in a return trip please call to see if we can facilitate your needs.

$320.00 covers transportation into the yurt. Its a 5 mile and 1000 foot descent back to the winter parking lot at Conway Summit. If you are interested in a return trip please call to see if we can facilitate your needs.

Road closure can be unpredictable and is highly dependent on weather, but we try to keep Virginia Lakes Rd. status up to date in the footer of this website here: 

Also check the Mono County Web Page. If Virginia Lakes Rd. is open, you can drive close to the Virginia Lakes Yurt. If the road is closed, you must skin to the yurt or arrange a lift from our snowcat. 

The Dunderberg Yurt cannot be accessed by vehicle. 

This depends on you! We are happy to arrange a ride in at any point between 8:00am-7:00pm. If you need special arrangements just ask and we will try to accommodate you. Pickup point is on Virginia Lakes Road about 1/8 of a mile from Hwy 395 on top of Conway Summit. See Directions and Maps

Check in is 12:00pm and and check out time is 9:00 am. If it is the morning of your check out please have the yurt cleaned and ready for the next group before you head out for your final turns of the day. If checking in please be aware that others may have neatly stacked their bags up for a quick pick up after hitting that last line before heading out.

Please have the yurt clean and picked up for the next guests, stash your extra gear on one bunk, ski, and retrieve it on you way out.