Ski Touring Equipment Guidebook

Dear Adventurers and Ski Addicted, this short article serves mainly to have an overview of the materials necessary for the Ski Touring, in order to be sure that we always have everything we need for a beautiful ski touring/mountaineering trip.

The goal is to have an easy consultation list, so as not to forget anything, and to be able to bring with us even those small objects/details that can make the difference, especially when your trip takes place in an isolated environment or you will find yourself in remote mountains  of the world, without the possibility of having the support of shops or rentals. 

Classic ski touring and mountaineering equipment

For each ski touring tour, fundamental are, of course, skis (touring or free-touring), poles (telescopic or not), touring bindings, skins and boots with walk mode.

So let’s see how to fill the backpack and what can be useful to us.

We recommend a 30/35 lt. backpack trips for day trips, this capacity should be enough to contain everything you need without bringing us useless material. Let us remember that a light backpack allows you to tire us less and ski more easily.

As accessories, we consider the knives (rampant or ski crampons) important, especially for those who practice ski mountaineering in spring (early departures often involve a hard and frozen snowy coat) or at high altitude (such as, for example, the 4000 in the late season).

Then there are some accessories that it is good to always have with us, such as a good repair kit, composed of duck tape (often can save the day), the plumber bands, a good multitool knife with screwdriver and pliers, a lighter.

An emergency kit must never be missing with fundamental equipment (there are different types on the market, we recommend not to overdo the material included).

We also recommend having (perhaps one in groups) a kit consisting of instantaneous wax for skis (if the snows can become sticky or our skis lose smoothness), wax or paraffin for waterproof treatment of the skins (if the snow sticks under the skins during the climb, this is very common), plastic scratch to scrape skins and skis with frozen snow.

Water (better with salts), a thermos with hot tea as you prefer and food (bars, dried fruit or maltodextrine gel works well)

Technical ski mountaineering

When the trips become more demanding, it may be necessary to enrich our equipment with crampons and ice axe (usually light versions are fine, we are talking about snow and rarely of ice). Be careful to try the compatibility with your ski boots before purchasing. This equipment will allow you to face more impervious slopes or to safely face some more technical parts to get to the top.

It may also be necessary to have the rope with you (we always recommend a single approved rope), for any exposed sections, short climbing sections or belaying.

At this point your equipment will have to be enriched with harness (light for ski touring) and consequently also mountaineering material such as a belay device, quickdraws, dynema or kevlar slings, screwlock carabiners. As for this material, being a mountaineering topic, we always recommend dealing with adequate training before undertaking climbs of greater commitment.

Hut to Hut ski touring and mountaineering

If you like ski mountaineering day trips, then you will go crazy for several days tours.

Tackling the haute route of the Alps will allow you to visit remote places and fully enjoy the ski days that you will not forget.

You will therefore have to rethink the capacity of your backpack, a 40 lt. backpack should be enough, otherwise 45 could be the definitive encounter.

You should have enough space to bring some spare garments, a sheet bag for the night and possibly bivouac slippers (not all the huts are equipped with it).

If your tour takes place in a glacier environment, then you will have to prepare sufficient space for your glacier equipment.

Don’t forget documents and some cash money, not all refuges have pos.

For those who begin the path to become a Skialper, we always recommend a good training, relying on professionals in the sector, covering fundamental topics such as climbing and descent technique, weather and nivology, organization of the trip and safety.

Our UIAGM/IFMGA Mountain Guides will be available to accompany you and teach you all the fundamental notions to tackle any type of terrain with awareness and a high level of safety.

Ski safe!

Horizon Adventures Team

Go Ski touring with our IFMGA Mountain Guides

2024-07-25 07:33:10

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