Winter in the South Chilcotin

Waiting on Winter – Planning for the Backcountry

While the snow is taking it’s time to join us this winter there are plenty of thing to do to keep busy and help us prepare for a great backcountry ski season.  Due to the lack of skiing, I’ve had plenty of time to read up on all sorts of ski related things… trip planning info, conditions reports, gear reviews, general safety and so much more!

***The snow started falling as I was writing this!  Check out the photos of snow at Tyax Resort on our Facebook page.***

Safety should be a number one priority for anyone traveling in the backcountry, followed closely by fun.  At the beginning of the season it’s always a good idea to remind ourselves of our safety training.  Along with checking your safety gear, and practicing with it before going out,  A great little article by local ACMG ASG, Alex Wigley, about The Problem with Avalanche Rescuewith some important things to consider.

A little bit of trip planning is essential for any backcountry excursion, something that can be glossed over when one person in the group does the planning for the group. Know where you’re going, the terrain options, the conditions, what resources are available, are all key pieces of info in planning. As backcountry enthusiasts reading and understanding the information put out by the Canadian Avalanche Centre  is always a starting point. There is also some great reading on the Forecasters blog -which covers a variety of topics on a more in-depth scale, and the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides (ACMG),  Mountain Condition Reports (MCR).Eldorado Cabin view

With all the new technology these days having at least one method of communication is not only easily available it’s also quite a bit more affordable. Renting a Satellite phone is common these days, or purchasing a GPS tracking device with SOS messaging capabilities (Personal Locator Beacon) can be done under a couple hundred dollars.  SPOT and inReach both offer great products, each with their own pros and cons and worth the investment.  If you happen to be in an area with Cell phone reception knowing exactly where you can get reception is key, but relying on cell reception in the backcountry isn’t recommended as we all know that cell phone battery life is limited and reception can be intermittent.  Also being aware that electronic devices can affect your transceiver so keeping your electronics separated (20 cms at least) will help in minimizing this interference.

Our little cabin is a ski tourers’ paradise, tucked away in the South Chilcotin Mountains, it’s miles away from civilization.  Being in such a remote location this also requires guests to be totally self supported and prepared for all types of situations.  We ask that guests read the Cabin information provided thoroughly and come prepared to have an awesome backcountry trip.

So why not take some time now to read up… perhaps while doing some chair squats to keep those legs in ski-shape!