Backcountry Comes to the Frontcountry

by Greg Colquitt | February 2, 2018

Backcountry Comes to the Frontcountry

by | Feb 2, 2018 | Ski Industry News | 0 comments

The quiver is changing.

No longer are the days of just a pair of resort skis. The newest kid on the block is the alpine touring ski. And it’s becoming sexy.
Whether displayed on your iPhones screens, the big screen, or in the screen of our minds, the allure of the backcountry is undeniable. Heli-skiing, pillow lines, untouched gladed forests–the list is enough to make anyone excited to ski–but should you have to trek into the world out-of-bounds to find it?

Finding fresh lines in-bounds

As backcountry skiing becomes more popular, more resort-goers are finding peace of mind and fresh lines within the safety of resort boundaries–with a little bit of work.
To find the goods, all you need is a set of skis with touring bindings, which allow for free heel movement as if you were walking, and climbing skins. Climbing skins have a history deep in the origins of skiing itself and are designed after the fur of a short haired animals. Have you ever pet a Dachshund backwards? That same grip on your finger tips is what grips the snow and prevents you from sliding backwards, thus allowing you to climb up the mountain.
It’s simple, really–all it takes is a little bit of coffee because to get the freshest lines you’re going to need to start early. Find a buddy to share the mission with and enjoy the turns on the way down. Just don’t hesitate to yip and holler as you hit the the “Hollywood line” underneath the chair before the early morning staff hit the top of the mountain. But what if you’re looking for turns when the chairs stop spinning?

Pre & post season turns

Some of the best turns of your life can come before and after the resort closes for the season and it’s important to know how you can make this a reality.
For starters, always check with your local hill’s policies about uphill traffic both before and after the season. Then, depending on the snowpack, be aware of avalanche terrain you plan to ski. If you’re heading out in the early season, don’t be fooled into thinking low snowpack = low avalanche risk. The danger is still present, and continues on into the post-season. All these things considered, the resort is the least avalanche prone due to skier traffic throughout the season, so if you’re looking for late season turns, this is your best bet.

Earn your turns.

So what are you waiting for? There’s no reason why you can’t find the best turns of your life both in bounds and during the regular season. They say the early bird gets the worm, but there’s snow on the ground. The early bird gets the turns.

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