It’s Getting Hot in Here: What Wildfires and Record Temperatures Mean for Skiers and Riders

Megan Michelson left her home in Tahoe City, California, last summer as the Dixie fire made air quality worse than that of Beijing on a bad day. While she was gone, the Caldor fire swept in from the south, displacing tens of thousands of people. After one of the worst fire seasons on record in the western U.S.—and one that hit particularly close to home—Michelson explored what it means for our climate, our winters, our snowpack and our skiing.

Outclassing the Old Guys: The College Student Notching First Descents in Alaska

First descentionist Zack Little has absorbed lessons from an impressive roster of mentors to become a leader among his peers.

Mountain Skills: Essential Education

The list of skills and knowledge needed to get into the mountains is never ending. In fact, it’s subject matter that numerous careers are built on, but safe and efficient backcountry travel doesn’t necessarily require a PhD in snow science or a guide’s certification. It takes common sense, good partners, a willingness to learn and, above all, the following 10 things that every skier and rider should know.

Make it Count: How to get the most out of travel

There’s a difference between a vacation and a trip. Vacations are stress-free, feet-up affairs spent sipping cocktails in luxury’s lap. Trips are relaxing in a high-paced, flow-state way, filled with activity and energy, often leaving one begging for a vacation by the end. Resort skiers go on vacations to carve corduroy and eat filet; backcountry skiers go on trips to find adventure. And while the latter is easily more rewarding, earning those rewards takes proper planning and preparation. Here’s how to maximize a trip for all it’s worth.

Up and Down Colorado’s Elk Range with Michael Wirth

Michael Wirth explored a lifetime’s worth of peaks in Colorado’s Elk Mountains in just two months. The young ski mountaineer summited and skied all 59 13ers in the remote range, becoming the first person to do so.

Happy Place: Grace Staberg finds her flow on the Skimo World Cup

When Grace Staberg starting skimo racing during her freshman year of high school in Summit County, Colorado, she was the slowest kid on the team. Now age 20, Staberg is living in Europe and competing on the Skimo World Cup.

Mountain Skills: Cody Townsend Ditches Deviance

What do space shuttles and backcountry skiing have in common? According to freeride skier Cody Townsend, it’s a relationship that stems from an explosion and a theory. Better yet, he’s adapted a method of assessing off-piste risk based on that relationship.

Till Death Do Us Part: Hadley Hammer’s Journey of Love and Loss in the Mountains

It took 178 days for pro skier Hadley Hammer to fall madly in love with Austrian alpinist David Lama. It took one day to lose it all. The mountains brought them together, ripped them apart and carried her back from the gutter of grief.

Gearbox: Four Headlamps to Light Your Early Morning Adventures

It’s June, so you may have already transitioned to bike mode, which is fine, but if you live in one of the ranges across the United States still being hit with periodic storms, you may be looking for a headlamp to light the early morning wakeups. Or you’re looking for a light that illuminates any number of other outdoor activities, for a headlamp is a piece of gear that transcends seasons, that always lives in your pack, that saves you at just the right time, no matter the time of year. From the classic to the futuristic, here are four lamps that will help regardless of what type of adventure you’re on.

Manageability Thoughts: Are you biting off more than you can chew in avalanche terrain?

Avalanche educator Sarah Carpenter takes a step back to evaluate what hazards are manageable in the backcountry, what what needs to be avoided.

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