2015 Grand Traverse: Scott Simmons on his team’s win, training and Smelling the Roses


Aspen, Colo. welcomed Grand Traverse racers a little earlier than expected this year, as Scott Simmons and Paul Hamilton cruised through the finish in a record-breaking six hours, 44 minutes and 35 seconds. Thanks to the fast course and a tough training regimen, the duo were more than able to accomplish their pre-race goal: win. “We wanted to make […]

New-School Ski Mountaineers: At Sugarbush, Vt. junior skimos head off piste

Diggity, Rickety and the Skimos. [Photo] David Crothers

A three-mile section of Central Vermont’s Long Trail links Sugarbush’s Castlerock Peak and Mt. Ellen. It’s routinely traveled by backcountry skiers, and today a group of ski mountaineers are lined up to make the tour. But, instead of being kitted out with spandex and race gear, they wear mondo size 17 boots and 140-cm long skis. They are a part of Sugarbush’s Ski Mountaineers program, a development group of 15 kids ages 10 to 17 who meet each weekend to learn backcountry skills.

2016 Gear Test Week: The Round Up


After a week in Powder Mountain, the 50 gear testers and Backcountry staff have dispersed back to their respective mountain towns. Like the Annual Board Test, the Gear Test was a huge success; the squad tested 200 skis and 50 boots, as well as a range of tele and AT bindings, all while enjoying the surprise […]

The 2015 Grand Traverse: A Racer Reflects


This past weekend marked the 18th Elk Mountain Grand Traverse, a 40-mile backcountry ski race between Crested Butte and Aspen, Colo. The race kicks off at midnight, and racers generally finish between eight and 16 hours—if they make it to Aspen at all. Across those long miles, racers must traverse over 7,800 feet of elevation gain, transition from […]

Numerous Avalanches Hit Mt. Washington, N.H.

The second avalanche of the day, which deposited three to four feet of debris across 400 feet of the Tuckerman Ravine floor. [Photo] Courtesy Mt. Washington Avalanche Center

On Sunday, March 29, several avalanches occurred throughout New Hampshire’s Presidential Range, notably four human-triggered slides on Mt. Washington and Mt. Monroe. According to a report from the Mt. Washington Avalanche Center, one of these avalanches resulted in injuries.

ORTOVOX Issues Voluntary S1+ Transceiver Recall


Longmont, Colo. ORTOVOX is issuing an immediate recall of the S1+ model avalanche transceiver due to a repairable hardwear issue. The issue occurs in transmission mode and is based on the limited ability to transmit a discoverable signal, even when turned on and properly functioning. The recall affects all S1+ models that have been distributed […]

2016 Board Test Week Round Up


The last week was awesome, inspiring and exhausting. My board test team rode harder than bats outta hell, and they deserve every bit of recognition for their work. So I was pretty annoyed last night when I overheard some guy at the bar saying he was sick of hearing “so many snowboarders acting all high […]

2016 Gear Test Week: Day 4 Dispatch


The testers were back at it again on Friday at Powder Mountain, after a surprising array of songs and skits performed at the Gear Test’s Annual Talent Show on Thursday night. As the day heated up, the group took advantage of the corn and tested the faster and lighter skis of the BCM selection. By the end […]

2016 Gear Test Week: Day 3 Dispatch


Day 3 of the Gear Test Week was another welcomed day of bluebird skies and warm temperatures. Before the snow turned slushy, a group of testers dropped into terrain typically accessed by the Paradise Lift, which is currently closed due to snow conditions. The crew took turns in the Powder Chambers—untracked, north-facing slopes—and after a quick […]

2016 Gear Test Profile: Sheridan Davis and Mary McIntyre


Since 2008, approximately 50 testers from around the U.S. have congregated in Powder Mountain to shred on and evaluate next year’s bindings, boots and skis. Some testers make it back every year, putting their home mountains second for a week with Backcountry and their fellow testers, many of whom are now like family. And each year […]