Hips Don’t Lie: How a solid foundation leads to strong skinning

In 2014, when Exum guide and longtime skimo competitor Janelle Smiley entered a hospital for double hip surgeries, she worried she might never skin again. She and her husband Mark, an internationally certified mountain guide, had built a life around uphill skiing—Janelle is a three-time winner of the National Skimo Championship, a two-time North American Championship winner and won the team division of the 2013 Swiss Mountaineering Championship with partner Stevie Kremer.

Covering Ground: How to plan a dialed multiday traverse

Wapta. Ortler. Spearhead. Haute Route. These are hallowed ski routes; lines on a map that, over time, have become greater than themselves. For many skiers and riders, they have become pilgrimages. And for good reason.

Fruits of the Sea

How an old-timey city in northern Québec celebrates tradition while embracing its evolving future.

Backstory: Turning Back

An overhanging rock face looms to our left, and I can see the Coleman Glacier sprawling far below my feet. Kyle and I are on the Hourglass, a 50-degree ramp that gains Mt. Baker, Wash.’s North Ridge. Early this morning, after a few soggy hours of sleep in Murkwood Camp, we’d navigated the crevasses of […]

The Last Hill Until the Next One

For an offbeat crew taking the long route from Reno, Nevada to the base of California’s Sierra Nevada Mountains, slow is better and biking is best. 

The Spearhead Doctorate: JD Hare traverses from the mountains to the blueberry patch and back

He may spend the summer months tending blueberry bushes, but JD Hare is far from being put out to pasture. In 1996, at age 18, Hare came achingly close to ascending Canada’s tallest peak, Mt. Logan, but turned back just shy of the 19,551-foot summit when altitude sickness affected most of his party. While that mission would have made Hare the youngest person to summit Logan, it still helped propel his freeskiing career toward steep and creative lines. But his inclination to migrate west from his native Ontario was sparked much earlier.

Return to Evil: Hilaree Nelson revisits oblivion to ski India’s 21,252-foot Papsura

In March 2013 Hilaree Nelson set out to climb and ski a towering 6,000-meter monster in a remote corner of India. Papsura—or The Peak of Evil by its endearing sobriquet—commands a proud, west-facing couloir that plummets more than 2,500 feet from its 21,252-foot summit.

The Backside of Beyond: An essay by the late Allan Bard

Steve McQueen said, “I’d rather wake up in the middle of nowhere than in any city on earth.” Edward Abbey referred to the urban scene as “syphilization.” We read between the lines and suspect a cure for the subtlest of modern maladies, the condition caused by the strained nervous sense of urgency that seems to define life in the city.

White Trash: An essay by Allan Bard & Tom Carter

The driving snow obscured the porch light. With his face pressed against the frosted window pane, Bardini continued raving about the chills, thrills and high-speed adventure of his favorite subject—crud skiing.