Ever wondered about the nuances of “closed” ski runs you encounter while resort uphilling? If you don’t see a sign turned your direction, while a closed sign is displayed to downhill skiers coming from above, is the run open, or closed? A court case involving Vail hinges on these sorts of issues. I find it rather interesting, both from the standpoint of how signs are managed at resorts, as well as the implications of personal responsibility vs depending on big brother ski patrol. From my omniscient office chair: whether you ski in the wilderness or at Vail, watch your own behind, and be sure your kids get a good dose of safety training regarding on-mountain and side country resort hazards. Article here.
In other Vail news: they bought the Crested Butte resort. That might be related to ski touring as much as the price of a 2×4 in Beijing. Or, perhaps it’s more important than one would think, as resort policy regarding everything from uphill skiing to support of skimo racing can touch the sport of ski touring. So keep your ears open. More here.
And our third Vail item. Did you know Vail once had a theme song? Anyone? We have an MP3. Not sure we can share it, looking into the history, more later.
In WildSnow local news with international implications, our Elk Range Mountain Safety Coalition will continue throughout the summer with free and low-cost educational outreach. This thing is amazing, a coalition of Mountain Rescue, Forest Service, sheriff department filled out by two competing guide services, I have high hopes. Coalitions can suffer from two much committee decision making so we shall see, but for now I highly recommend this anyone in Colorado who’s relatively new to peak climbing. Lot’s of options to attend, see details.
Want “summer” snow? There is always South America. I like venturing down there in adventure travel mode, but those wanting a more civilized and organized experience do have options. For example, champion skier Kim Reichhelm will be doing her Portillo thing, as will the Dav, though his “collectiva” is full up.
As if MS Windows “waiting” isn’t enough these days… What’s the latest avalanche beacon to have a software glitch? At the moment, Ortovox 3+ is under the spotlight. Anyone long for the days of simplicity? Recall infos here.
“It was the second week of May … Christine L. Reid and Benno Rybizka feared that the snow might already have melted, foiling their plan. Two ski seasons had already passed since they had decided to make a ski film … a novelty in the 1930s…” More here.
Just for reference, next winter. Are you set on ski touring in France? If so, and you’d like to avoid Cham-hype and other crowded resort areas, it appears the Maurienne valley could be a good bet. Article here.
I recently got curious as to how things are going at Black Diamond. So I accosted a PR guy I trust and got the spiel. He said their backcountry ski line (Helio!) is going well, understandable, and they’ve got something like fifty new products coming to retail over the next year. What they claim is the lightest shell in the market should be interesting. You’ll see it here.
In closing, tired of summer yet? For a break, learn all about hair ice, that which is not formed by breathing down on your neck beard.
WildSnow.com publisher emeritus and founder Lou (Louis Dawson) has a 50+ years career in climbing, backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering. He was the first person in history to ski down all 54 Colorado 14,000-foot peaks, has authored numerous books about about backcountry skiing, and has skied from the summit of Denali in Alaska, North America’s highest mountain.