Jeffery Bergeron, under the alias of Biff America, is a monthly columnist for BCM. Biff provides anecdotes about some of our favorite things: beer, sex and skiing.
In late February of last winter, Christian Mason joined a group of friends for a bc yurt trip in northern Idaho’s Payette National Forest. To shorten the 10-mile approach to Payette Powder Guides’ Lick Creek Summit Yurts, the team utilized snowmobiles for shuttling gear and people. After six days at the yurts, the group loaded up the sleds with excess food and beer, and Christian stepped behind a sled to be pulled out. Then things went wrong.
Eric Carter says his speed record on Washington’s 14,410-foot Mt. Rainier was somewhat of a consolation prize. He and best friend Nick Elson were aiming to set the speed record on the Liberty Ridge, but were forced to move to the Disappointment Cleaver route when news broke that six climbers were lost near Liberty Ridge (the six are still missing and presumed dead). We caught up with Eric to talk about his record climb, the tragedy on Liberty Ridge and the sport of ski mountaineering.
Remember when inline skating was as rad as backcountry skiing? Yeah, neither do we. But back in January 1999, when Alpine Trekkers were cutting edge, Alpina began making plastic telemark boots and offered a line of roller-skates—perfect for practicing the balance, coordination and one-legged pirouettes necessary in every bc skier’s skill set. Here’s BCM founder David Harrower’s review of the Alpina 450.
Elemental carbon is a major component of all living things, plus pencil lead, diamonds, etc. But none of that is useful for making skis. Sure, everyone knows carbon fiber is used in the construction of skis, boots, poles, and probes (not to mention bike frames and fishing rods). But, did you know that you can buy a carbon-fiber coffee table, toilet or even a complete bathtub?
How often have you stood on the top of a Northeastern hardwood ridge looking down on a steep, powder-filled glade, and wondered how much better the skiing would be if you could just lop a few beech saplings here, trim a few hemlock boughs there? Vermont backcountry skier and attorney Eric Goldwarg contemplates that reality.
Like the ad says of Asolo’s revolutionary Tele Breeze Plus, “sometimes words are not necessary….” We’re working toward publishing our 100th issue and celebrating 20 years of Backcountry Magazine. Can you believe it? Well, since we all can’t put our beers together with celebratory cheer, we’ve unearthed early editions of the mag, dug through them […]
“I like my heavy gear—it gives me more control.” “I don’t need light gear. I’m faster than my partners.” “Saving a couple pounds doesn’t really matter anyway.” I’ve heard all these statements about lightening the backcountry load, but are they really valid? Or does trimming zipper pulls and cutting toothbrush handles really make a difference?
At its April conclave in Belek, Turkey, the Executive Board of the International Olympic Committee granted provisional recognition to the International Ski Mountaineering Federation (ISMF) for the possible inclusion of skimo as an Olympic event: As early as the 2022 Games we could see not just more Spandex and snot but improbably stripped-down AT bindings, backpacks that weigh less than a bra, dental floss harnesses and high-mountain suffering.
Throwback to Issue #10, January 1997, when topsheets were neon, freeheel bindings were dainty and telemark skiers didn’t wear clothing. Because it’s “the equipment” that really counts…. We’re working toward publishing our 100th issue and celebrating 20 years of Backcountry Magazine. Can you believe it? Well, since we all can’t put our beers together […]