Happy Winter: Andreas Fransson’s Musings

fransson

Andreas Fransson may seem like the maddest man on skis, ticking off unimaginably steep descents around the world. But he’s also a yogi and deep thinker with endless musings on life in the mountains. Backcountry Managing Editor Tyler Cohen got to know Fransson last April on a trip to Chamonix, France, and he profiled the extreme […]

Pit Maneuvers: Snow pit tests and digging protocol

pits_feature

When was the last time you dug a snow pit? During that Avy 1 course you took a few years back? On that one hut trip last winter to a zone you’d never skied before? Digging pits is often seen as time consuming, but, in reality, there’s no better way to understand the snowpack upon which you’re traveling. Here are four videos to refresh your skills.

Bare-Ass Backcountry: Sweetgrass “Valhalla” Segment

sweetgrass_feature

Beacon? Check. Shovel? Check. Probe? Check. Anything else? Nope. We hereby approve of Sweetgrass Productions’ bare-ass backcountry protocol.

Heaven on Earth: Holden Village, Wash.

holden_webready

“We came up to Holden in search of spirituality,” says splitboarder Neil Provo. And he and the Powderwhore crew found it in the snowy peaks, pillow lines and steep couloirs above the Lutheran retreat at Holden Village, Washington.

Testers’ Choice: Dynastar Cham 107 W’s

testerschoice

Becca started her ski-testing career back in 2003 when the Gear Test Week lodging was at an Alpaca Farm in Vermont. She has met Glen Plake twice, drank tea at Warren Miller’s house and winked at Scot Schmidt. Her pick of the test? The Dynastar Cham 107 W’s.

Getting Caught in the Coast Range

kcavy_feature

Last April, pro skier KC Deane joined photographer Mason Mashon and friend Kye Peterson for a photo session near the Pemberton Icecap in British Columbia’s Coast Mountains. KC and Kye skied a test run, made several ski cuts on their intended line and dropped a cornice nearby to no hazardous effect. But when KC dropped into his intended line, he took a wild ride.

Mountain Skills: Cutting a Cornice

cornicecut_feature

Dropping a cornice onto a slope can be an effective way to see if it will slide, simulating the weight of a skier on the snow. Here’s a video demonstration of proper cornice cutting technique.

Mountain Skills: Ski Cutting a Slope

skicut_feature

By skiing quickly across a slope you can test stability without hanging yourself too far out there. Here’s a video that demonstrates proper ski-cutting technique.

Testers’ Choice: Atomic Charter

testerschoice

Road Dust, a 10-year tester, started racing at age 13, telemark raced at the national level during college and is now back on AT gear. He practices law, but dreams of a long-term vacation and is busy planning his revenge on fellow ski tester Shaggy. His pick of the test? The Atomic Charter

Stoked on the Gear Guide? Tell Us!

stoked_feature

Ever seen such pure, unadulterated excitement? Little Aven here is a five-week-old aspiring backcountry skier, and she’s pretty fired up about the 2014 Gear Guide. What do you think of the issue? Love it? Hate it? Jonesing for winter? We want to hear from you!

css.php