Heli-skiing or -boarding is pretty much on every rider's bucketlist. A lot of things pop up on the bucketlist when you have to make a certain effort. In this case, it means that you have to pay quite a lot of money before you can fly away with the metal bird. And we have to make choices. Heli-skiing or -boarding doesn't have to be that expensive, as you can experience in the Italian resort of Livigno.
Livigno is an example for many other ski areas when it comes to freeriding. Their basic idea is that informing is much more meaningful than simply forbidding. For example, they ensure that you have the right information at your disposal every day. There are large signs at the lifts and the local avalanche forecast of Livigno is published every morning. There are a lot of possibilities to ride powder directly from the lifts, but you can also go up with the helicopter.
The holy grail of heli-skiing is of course not to be found in Europe. For that you have to cross the ocean to British Columbia or Alaska. However, that comes with a nice price tag. It's also possible to heli-ski in the Alps. There are quite a number of runs in Switzerland and perhaps the best heli possibilities of the Alps can be found in the Italian valley of Valgrisenche. Yet heli-skiing in Livigno is interesting, because it is very accessible. You 'only' pay € 275.00 for two drops.
Heli-skiing in Livigno is now possible in the Valle delle Mine or the Valle delle Monte for a number of years. These two valleys aren't part of a National Park. Since there is room for four people in the helicopter, it should generally not be a problem to find a group with the same level. Eventually the guide picks a line both based on the avalanche safety, but also on the level of the group.
The runs you ski or ride with heli-skiing in Livigno vary from very mellow powder fields to steeper couloirs. This clearly distinguishes them with heli-skiing in Switzerland, where it is just a bit too flat in general. When you have the right group and the right conditions, then it is certainly possible to make some nice runs.
Heli-skiing in Livigno definitely is something to do when you visit this Italian gem!