The Truth About Skiing

Ski mountaineering guide, tips and tricks

Passionate and true ski mountaineers go climbing over the rocks, ice, or broken glaciers, fresh, virgin powder snow, and multi – peak ascents with adequate ski mountaineering equipment. In ski mountaineering, skiers climb slopes and ascents on their skis or by their boots.

Ski mountaineering

It is a very dangerous sporting because you can easily get caught in avalanches, fragile glaciers, extreme coldness and you may get altitude sickness if you are not prepared for this type of terrains. On the other hand, you are about to walk and climb and then ski through untouched, fluffy, sparkling powder or very steep slopes, glaciers and cracks.

Where to go ski mountaineering (backcountry skiing)?

Backcountry skiingThe best places for ski mountaineering are definitely Alps, and the Pyrenees. Scotland is also a great place for ski mountaineering as well as the North American Rocky Mountains. If you are fresh ski mountaineer, try to find places with safe and firm glaciers like Vanoise in French Alps or Silvertta Alps between Austria and Switzerland. Ski season in Alps is between December and June, but the best time for ski mountaineering is in March and April.

As you already know, there are two basic skiing styles-Alpine and Nordic, referring to their origin places. The skis – Alpine or Nordic differ in the thing is the heel of a boot is firmly or slightly attached to the ski. Some people who goes ski mountaineering think that Nordic is better because these skis are much lighter and heels are relatively free, so it could be easier to climb with them. Some other says that Alpine skis are better because when you climb you usually go downhill down dangerous terrains and you would definitely not want your ski to get off easily. The type of skis and bindings you should choose for ski mountaineering should depend on a terrain you are climbing and descending. The right choice is on you and the experience of the other people that went ski mountaineering through the similar places.

The type of clothes you should wear is detail explained in our skiing system-The Truth about Skiing.

Ski mountaineering safety gear

Ice axe

Ice axe for mountaineering

If you are skiing in Europe, you are probably skiing on glaciers so, wear a harness, and keep a rope in a rucksack so you can easily get it when needed. It is recommended to carry a pulleys, slings and karabiners for rescuing anyone who falls into a crevasse. You should probably need to take ice axe and crampons, as well. On the other hand, you are going to need avalanche safety gear like beacons, shovel and probes.

Ski mountaineering safety tips

At high altitudes, you are going to be in low-oxygen areas, which could affect your breathing, thinking, and even the consciousness, so be careful and well-prepared! Read our literature in order to prevent possible accidents.

For prevention of altitude sickness during ski mountaineering drink plenty of fluids, avoid cigarettes and alcohol, and eat carbohydrates for energy. Acclimatize yourself to altitude gradually, so as to sleep somewhere at lower altitude, and explore higher altitudes only after waiting for a few days.

Another important thing about ski mountaineering is how to avoid or get yourself out of an avalanche. You must know what type of gear to carry with you, how to examine the terrain and to predict an avalanche, and mostly important, how to escape or save your companions from an avalanche. These life saving things are also explained in our skiing system.

Exercise on time because you will need every atom of your strength to endure these extreme weather conditions and unique appearances of the nature. Learn how to act in different kinds of accidents, and learn how to treat injuries. If you do not know any of these, you must not go on a ski mountaineering because you are going to get yourself and your group in danger.

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