Sure, the Northeast has had a slow winter, but that won’t stop The Mountaineer in Keene Valley, N.Y. from hosting their 12th Annual Backcountry Ski Festival. Skifest is the Northeast’s premiere backcountry event, with massive offering of guided tours, a full-blown equipment demo on a throwback hill and weekend-long instruction. And this year, Chris Davenport will be there as keynote speaker. For all the details, check out the press release below.PRESS RELEASE – The Mountaineer in Keene Valley, NY will host the Twelfth Annual Adirondack Backcountry Ski Festival the weekend of March 1 & 2, 2014. Backcountry skiing means skiing on natural snow in natural terrain, and combines all of the elements of touring, climbing and downhill skiing into a real winter mountaineering experience. We are excited to host SCARPA athlete Chris Davenport – one of the world’s most accomplished big mountain skiers – at this year’s Backcountry Skifest! Among his many ski mountaineering achievements, in 2007 Chris became the first person to ski all fifty-four of Colorado’s 14,000-foot peaks in less than one year. Don’t miss what is sure to be a memorable presentation by Chris at the Keene Central School Saturday evening! Chris’ presentation on Saturday is open to the public – doors open at 7:30 pm for the 8:00 pm show, and tickets are $10 with raffle tickets available for $1 each. New this year – The Mountaineer is encouraging all attendees to bring a non-perishable donation to the Keene Food Pantry to Saturday evening’s presentation.
Cloudsplitter Mountain Guides in Keene Valley will lead guided backcountry tours for several ability levels on Saturday and Sunday, and Chuck Boyd will teach an Introduction to Avalanche Safety and Awareness course on Saturday, with a fieldwork component on Sunday. Advance registration for all guided tours and instructional clinics is required. Registration information is available at www.mountaineer.com/skifest.
Demos and mini clinics will be held at Otis Mountain in Elizabethtown on Saturday. Otis Mountain is a private ski area that offers a great venue for testing out the latest skis and boots as well as clinics on skinning, telemark skiing, splitboarding and more. Mammut will be on hand with an avalanche beacon practice park that is open to the public. Mini-clinics and equipment demos will be free of charge, and no registration is required. Just show up ready to ski! The mini-clinics and demos take place from 10am to 3pm. Otis Mountain is located off of Route 9 in Elizabethtown, just a 15 minute drive from Keene Valley.
- NEW THIS YEAR @ OTIS – Local guide and backcountry splitboarder Will Roth will host a free Intro to Splitboarding clinic with splitboard demos from Voilé!
- ALSO NEW @ OTIS – Green Goddess Natural Foods will be on site all day with soup, grilled wraps, hot coffee, hot chocolate and baked goods available for purchase!
The Skifest is a benefit event, with proceeds supporting the New York State Ski Education Foundation’s Nordic racing programs and the Adirondack Ski Touring Council, stewards of the Adirondack Park’s backcountry ski trail system, including the famous Jackrabbit Trail. Major sponsors for this year’s event include SCARPA, Backcountry Magazine and Dynafit. Additional sponsors Black Diamond, Julbo, Madshus, Mammut, Marmot, Kastle, Outdoor Research, Primaloft, Scarpa, Voilé and adkbcski.com help make the event happen as well as provide demo gear for participants to try free of charge. The Skifest is a benefit event, with proceeds supporting the New York State Ski Education Foundation’s Nordic racing programs and the Adirondack Ski Touring Council, stewards of the Adirondack Park’s backcountry ski trail system, including the famous Jackrabbit Trail.