Local Legend Chris Landry: Lessons from a phantom pioneer

Landry is a recluse, that’s a totally fair word. I think he might even characterize himself that way. He was a very influential skier in the ’70s and ’80s not only doing the first descent [of the Landry Line] on Pyramid Peak but also the first descent of Liberty Ridge on Mt. Rainier, which was huge and not repeated for many years.

Aspen’s Mountain Man: Lou Dawson

Lou Dawson’s name is synonymous with backcountry skiing. He’s known as a pioneer, historian and walking gear encyclopedia, between countless first descents—like Snowmass, South Maroon Peak and Capitol Peak, to name a few.

A Washington-based group dreams of creating a hut system. But will bureaucracy get the best of them?

Springtime in Wenatchee, Washington is a blaze of white. The town, considered the apple capital of the world, sits an hour southeast of Stevens Pass on Highway 2. In April, the drive is a blur of blossoms. But now that I’m up a little higher—sitting next to a woodstove recently lit for the first time […]

Not Your Mom’s Ski Academy: A Maine School Heads Out of Bounds

Ski academies are well known for pumping out big names and fast results in alpine racing, and Carrabassett Valley Academy (CVA), a private middle and high-school ski academy based near Sugarloaf, Maine, is no exception. But what about the kids who aren’t exactly itching to become the next Bode Miller? Enter CVA’s Backcountry Program, which […]

The Seventh Sojourn: It’s impermissible to ski on Kilimanjaro. Will it soon be impossible?

When Hannah Follender was studying abroad in Kenya in 2009, she climbed to the top of Kilimanjaro (19,340 ft.), where she saw a large basin filled with snow. Although she wasn’t there to ski, the glaciers sparked an idea—she would return someday with skis in tow.

The Wild, Wild South: How a handful of South American countries are reshaping guiding and avalanche safety

That emphasis on certification, and on overall avalanche education, is relatively new for much of South America, says Greg Shaffran, an avalanche instructor and guide for Aspen Expeditions who has spent the past three summers in Chile and, last season, began teaching avalanche courses in Ushuaia, Farellones, Laguna Del Maule and Chillán.

From Granite to Grizzlies

Military Outdoors initially started in 2006 and extends from one basic principle: if the Sierra Club is designed to protect and promote exploration of the outdoors, then those who dedicate their lives to protecting these spaces should get a chance to enjoy them. Plus, being outside can help ease the transition from military service to civilian life and provide mental and physical health benefits.

2018 Gear Test Preview: Bindings

With Backcountry Magazine’s 2018 Gear Test kicking off tomorrow, we’re looking ahead to the latest in skis, boots and bindings that are rolling in to Powder Mountain today. Each year, to make sure we’re testing the most contemporary gear, we operate under a simple rule: Only first- and second-year skis, boots and bindings, or older models with construction updates, are eligible […]

The Start of a New Down: A common weed takes on an unusual purpose

Milkweed isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when considering insulation materials.

Allied Forces: Backcountry alliances form across the U.S., giving skiers and riders a unified voice

The trend of forming backcountry community organizations is one that’s catching on nationwide. From California to Washington, through Colorado and Utah and all the way to Vermont, alliances are taking hold, organizing backcountry users around grassroots advocacy.

css.php