The Testament, Part One: Turiano produces first half of Jackson Hole Backcountry Skier’s Guide


It’s not often that guidebooks get mistaken for coffee table treasures. Striking mountain panoramas, clean layout, inspirational spreads—it’s a thing to behold. But Tom Turiano’s Jackson Hole Backcountry Skier’s Guide: South somehow makes the leap.

Snow Stability and Climate Change: One researcher weighs in

A retreating, climate-change-affected glacier in Icy Bay, Alaska. [Photo] U.S. Geological Survey

No matter what your stodgy uncle says, climate change is happening and, by many accounts, it’s poised to mess with our winters. “People have done studies looking at Colorado, the Wasatch here in Utah, Pacific Coast Ranges, and across the board we’re looking at, by the end of the century, 3-5° Celsius in warming,” says Matt Jeglum, a PhD candidate studying atmospheric sciences at the University of Utah. “That’s big.”

Panjshir, Afghanistan Suffers Onslaught of Avalanches


PANJSHIR, AFGHANISTAN Severe avalanches that began Tuesday in the northeastern Panjshir region of Afghanistan now account for an avalanche-related death toll of over 168 people, as of Thursday evening. A heavy snowstorm, which started early Tuesday, dropped up to one meter of snow in places, reported, despite an otherwise relatively mild and dry winter. The avalanches ranged across four northeastern provinces, […]

BC Banter: IFSA Athlete Education, Adirondack Backcountry Ski Festival Registration, Jackson’s Goodwin Cabin, Epic TV Releases Haute Route Video


IFSA and SASS Global Travel Launch Athlete Education Initiative  CRYSTAL MOUNTAIN, WASH. The International Freeskiers and Snowboarders Association (IFSA) is partnering with Surf and Snow Sessions (SASS) Global Travel to promote backcountry decision making and avy awareness. At select 2015 IFSA National events, SASS Global Travel, in affiliation with BCA and Project Zero, will be […]

Running Interference: How Candy Affects Your Beacon

Beacon bafflers: keep this stuff away from your beeper. [Photo] David Crothers

At October’s International Snow Safety Workshop in Banff, Alberta, Ilari Dammert, Mammut’s electronics product manager, and Edwin Meister, a project manager with the Swiss electronics manufacturer CCS Adaxys, presented startling findings on beacon interference. Backcountry users have long known that electronics, particularly cell phones, can interfere with a transceiver’s function, but the level of interference and range of culprit gadgets hasn’t been known until now.

Snow King Moves Up: Inside Jackson, Wyo.’s Uphill Movement

Snow King Mountain by dusk. [Photo] Marco Antonio Torres

Snow King—known as “the King,” or the town hill—isn’t the reason people move to Jackson, but once they settle in, it often becomes a big part of life. The lift access is important, but where Snow King truly shines is in its extremely lenient uphill policy: three designated uphill routes during operating hours, and dogs allowed whenever the lifts are not spinning. Yet, increasing uphill pressure has put the issue in the hot seat in Jackson this season.

Shifting Ice: A mother-daughter pair explores Greenland in an unconventional way


About a year ago, one not-your-everyday mother-daughter conversation took place when Pip Hunt called up her mother, Martha. Pip, a former freeskiing competitor and ski coach, had something else up her sleeve for the woman who helped shape her athleticism and sense of adventure. According to Pip, the call went something like this: “Hey, Mama! […]

Basecamp: Four Centuries of Safety Gear


Backcountry safety gear has come a long way in the last two decades, never mind since the 1600s. Even so, gear is still no substitute for education, yet it’s always worth looking at how far the sport has come. Here’s a look at some relics that have shaped the last few centuries of backcountry safety.

BC Banter: Winter Wildlands Alliance Conference, “Working for the Weekend,” Vertfest heads to Snow King, Cambridge, Mass. Avalanche


Winter Wildlands Alliance Announces Grassroots Advocacy Conference BOISE, IDAHO As of January 2015, a new federal regulation, the Over-Snow Vehicle Rule, is protecting National Forest powder stashes. Now, National Forest Units that receive regular snowfall are mandated to create winter travel management plans that include specific trails and areas for snowmobile use to conserve areas […]

Mountain Drones: In Vail and Telluride, Avalanches Could Soon be Drone-Controlled


For photographers and production companies, drones have become a standard in the backcountry for capturing aerial angles without the high expenses of helicopters. But now, Mountain Drones, a Vail-based start-up company, is taking drones one step farther. The company, which started with a group of friends concerned about avy safety, is planning to use drones […]