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posts tagged "Backcountry"
Words: Erme Catino
Early season turns are right around the corner! With anticipated cold air supposedly moving across the country this week, it’s about time to get your gear in order for the season. While those first few skin laps at the local hill are fine for some un-tuned skis, skinning up the mountain with beat-up skins that have lost their glue can easily turn first snow-day stoke into a grumpy mess.
Enter Gecko Skins. Gecko Skins are based out of Austria and are NOT a glue skin. They use “molecular fusion,” which allow the skins to not wear out as easily, and can be cleaned with luke warm water to remove dirt, pine needles, etc. Furthermore, their adhesion layer can withstand temperature from + 250° C to – 70°C, and are patent pending.
The Marker Duke finally has a friend to play with. Meet the Salomon Guardian and Atomic Tracker, two new touring bindings from the sister companies. Skiing Magazine broke the story a couple of days ago, and we skiers are always psyched to see new products coming down the pipeline. While the binding isn’t going to be available until Fall 2012, skiers are already drooling over it. In the meantime you can shop our current touring bindings, since winter is quickly approaching. – Erme
We’ve been profiling Green Mountain Freeride’s adventures this winter as well as the tragic accident to their member and friend Ryan Hawks. Green Mountain Freeride is a collection of VT born and raised rippers who are traveling the globe shredding. Here is an update we received earlier this season from member Louis Erickson and his rare descent of the East Ridge of the Grand Teton. – Erme
Words and Photos: Louis Erickson
The February high pressure period was full of sunny days and sub-zero temperatures, so with our sights set on some big lines, we decided to head up to Teton National Park.
By 6:30 am, I was bumping down the road in Brady’s white pick-up to get our third climbing partner. With our crew assembled, we switched cars and drove from Teton Valley to the park. Upon arrival, we decided to climb and ski the East Ridge of the Grand Teton.
After skinning for two hours up Garnet Canyon and into Surprise Lake we stopped to take a food break and look at the objective ahead. Half an hour later we were under the East Ridge of the Grand putting on crampons and fueling up with the last of the home-made cookies. Our ascent was carefully planned as we began up a small choke which led us onto the Eastern ridge, and once we were on the face we began to pick our way through the rock bans. As we began to get higher on the route snow conditions quickly deteriorated and we encountered rotten snow along with a four inch wind slab.
After some debate we decided to head down from roughly two thirds of the way up the face. While skiing we triggered pockets of wind slab on the steepest pitches of the run…the line definitely had my full and undivided attention.
This ski mountaineering route is a classic and was first pioneered by Rick Hunt and Hans Johnstone in 2006 on their second attempt. Since then only a handful of skiers have attempted this route. It is probably the longest run off the Grand Teton, and is a very technical climbing route never the less a ski descent. I cannot wait to get back on this again!
Video: Jordan Manley and Sherpas Cinema Crew
Words: Erme Catino
Here is Jordan Manley’s third and final webisode – sponsored by Gore-tex and Arc’teryx featuring his travels from last winter. This artistic edit documents the groups six day high-alpine tour near Banff National Park and the Freshfield Icefield. Hopefully these edits will continue for next season, enjoy!
Words: Erme Catino
Jordan Manley just released his second episode of his webseries A Skiers Journey. This episode takes us to La Grave, France and I can’t help but think of Doug Coombs and the movie Steep while watching this edit. The cinematography again is phenomenal, but so too is the gnar of which is the French Alps. With no ropes and avalanche control, skiers looking to send it need to be aware of the conditions and listen to the mountain – this edit is a nice refresher to the ski porn heli-shots we’re all about to watch during ski movie premiere season. Enjoy!
If you have truly skied in some of the best powder in the world, than you know well the deep feeling of longing when you see a ski vid of some lucky schmuck tearing up a fresh line with nothing but virgin snow ahead.
But, the reality is that a good amount of us never venture off the front side of the mountain, or in my case, never get back out west after living there for five years. That is why, this sweet little high-quality vid makes me so happy. There is both crud skiing, and a tease toward the end of what a really spectacular day would realistically look like for most of us. Bear in mind the ski footage starts at about the halfway point but it is still a tasty little nugget. I can’t wait until parts two and three.
Words: Erme Catino
While many of us are still sweating out a lingering heatwave, the ski industry is getting geared up for the fall preseason and despite 90+ degree weather, the new gear is arriving at Skiershop.
The other day we received a shipment of Mammut products (look for a dealer review soon), and we wanted to highlight the Mammut Pulse Barryvox Avalanche Beacon. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that with the recent popularity in AT gear, more skier/riders are looking to head into the backcountry and if you head into the BC, you need a beacon! Avalanches are the real deal and can happen anywhere; East or West.
There are several great beacons on the market, but what sets the Mammut Pulse apart is their digital and analog 3-antenna approach that provides a 360 degree directional search arrow. Hopefully you will not have to use it, but the Mammut Pulse also allows the user to locate up to 8 multiple burials. This feature allows the user to mark specific burials and focus on one rescue at a time, check them off once they are rescued, and shows which signals are being searched by other Pulse users.
Needless to say, this beacon will greatly increase chances for survival in multiple burial situations with proper use…pretty awesome. As always with any beacon make sure you practice your skills before you head out in the BC.