Euro Get-Ready, Military Precision?


Post by WildSnow.com blogger | March 31, 2009      
European Backcountry Skiing

Euro Get Ready

Is “military precision” an oxymoron? I hope not, as that’s the ideal I strive for (and usually miss by a kilometer) when getting ready for these overseas backcountry skiing adventures. It’s morning, I’m driving to Denver in six hours, and my gear looks like a museum diorama in the making rather than a tightly packed 49.999 pound roll-around that’s ready for the cargo hold.

Backcountry Skiing

The official WildSnow.com traveling museum of backcountry skiing.

New this trip: Lightweight carbon-shafted shovel from Arva. This scoop is not designed for constant use, but it’ll dig a guy out of an avalanche if necessary. Also lightened up my alternate footwear by finding a pair of Reebok Travel Trainers, with insoles removed these weigh 19.4 ounces for the pair. Yeah, heavier than something more flimsy, but good to have something you can walk a few miles in without needing prosthetic feet afterward. (Yes Virginia, Crocs were considered — and rejected.) For a glacier rope we’re bringing an 8mm rando cord, with my 30 meter hunk of 5-mil Techcord (the black rope in the photo) as a spare line to build an extrication system if necessary. Not sure if I’ll carry my thermos or not, and how many pairs of socks does one need for a few hut nights? Two is probably plenty… Ok, time to cram all this junk in the bag.

Comments

11 Responses to “Euro Get-Ready, Military Precision?”

  1. Tucker March 31st, 2009 10:32 am

    The hardest part of any trip, good luck. 😉

  2. Ken March 31st, 2009 11:02 am

    Is that a probe I see? Lou Dawson with a probe? Maybe Lou is subject to a little social coercion…. Just giving you a hard time. Have fun! -Ken

  3. justin March 31st, 2009 11:51 am

    Ha, your living room floor is looking a lot like mine does right now.

  4. Njord March 31st, 2009 11:55 am

    Geeeshhh Lou: You were conducting PCIs without even knowing it!

    (PCI: Pre-Combat Inspections, a cornerstone of squad-level leadership prior to a major movement).

  5. Jason Gregg March 31st, 2009 12:40 pm

    Hi Lou,
    Will you ski with your Alias pack? I’m packing for my first time on the Haute Route and it’s looking like the M/L Alias is going to hold all my stuff. Will you take knee pads? One last question if you don’t mind, will you ski in schoeller type pants and carry shell pants for bad weather?

  6. Lou March 31st, 2009 4:52 pm

    Hey guys, yeah, the probe is usually carried when I venture into the unknown where mistakes are more likely. Still know from practice that a ski pole works pretty well, but might as well be avy PC!

    Pant system: OR Tremor Windstopper Softshell, with thin polypro long underwear in case the weather gets really stormy, but usually just the pants are enough. They’re quite water resistant, enough to survive a few hours in the rain. Upper will be the usual combo of Cloudveil softshell jacket with wool long sleeved T, a puff jacket, and a lightweight waterproof shell if things get really nasty. Two pair gloves, one warm, one light. Also bringing a synthetic sun shirt that also doubles as another slightly insulative layer. Hats: bill cap for sun, stocking cap, and thin polypro balaclava.

    I’m bringing my Alias, what doesn’t fit in there will be left behind!

  7. Lou March 31st, 2009 4:57 pm

    Oh, and Jason, no knee pads for this kid though I wish there was something minimal built into my pants… Have a good trip!

  8. Tony Clapp March 31st, 2009 9:27 pm

    Quick question off topic. What is the term for stratified snow? I am thinking that it is something like struggio? I know it is not right, any help? Please.

    Thanks.

  9. Colin March 31st, 2009 9:54 pm

    ^^^ Sastrugi?

  10. Tony Clapp April 1st, 2009 6:59 am

    Perfect. Thank you, Colin.

  11. Skinnyskier April 1st, 2009 10:13 am

    Sounds like a great trip. Question: do you really need three water bottles? Shave weight where possible 🙂

Got something to say? Please do so.





Anti-Spam Quiz:

You can subscribe to comment notification by checking the box to left, but you must leave a brief comment to do so, which records your email and requires you to use our anti-spam challange. If you don't like leaving substantive comments that's fine, just leave a simple comment that says something like "thanks, subscribed" with a made-up name. Check the comment subscription checkbox BEFORE you submit.
If you need an emoticon for a comment just copy/paste off the following list, or use text code you might be familiar with.

:D    :-)    :(    :lol:    :x    :P    :oops:    :cry:    :evil:    :twisted:    :roll:    :wink:    :!:    :?:    :idea:    :arrow:   
  
Due to comment spam we moderate most comments. Please do not submit your comment twice -- it will appear shortly after approval. Comments with one or more links in the text may be held in moderation, for spam prevention. If you'd like to publish a photo in a comment, contact us. Guidelines: Be civil, no personal attacks, avoid vulgarity and profanity.

  Your Comments

  • Bill H: Bright side of self-driving cars: It's going to make point-to-point shu...
  • rob glieden: Bohemia is pretty legit. It belongs in your post Lou as the drive up the pe...
  • Aaron Mattix: Bohemia has been high on my radar of interest. Would love to hear more feed...
  • JCoates: Lou, I grew up in rural Montana so "I get it" when you're talking about the...
  • Maciej Pike-Biegunski: Lou, I abandoned heavy "beef" boots years ago. The marginal gain in ski ...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Jake, I tested on bench, forward-upward release is fine, heel to the side (...
  • Chris: Clean, affordable, and efficient mass transit (whatever form that might tak...
  • Jeremy C: Unfortunately for anyone who likes driving, self drive cars will slowly ero...
  • Lou Dawson 2: In Western Europe, I sure see a lot of people driving... it's not the nirva...
  • Shar: If your subways cars are "grunged out", then that is a reflection of the la...
  • Maz: So when you're in Europe, how do you enjoy the "grunged out subway cars and...
  • zippy the pinhead: Rob, Answer to your question seems to be "yes". https://www.google.com/...
  • peterk: More features than an Alien: carbon, powerstrap-buckle, dual durometer sole...
  • rob trauscht: Possibly dumb question on the soles, but is anyone resoling AT boots? Seem...
  • Scott S Allen: Thanks Lou for the feed back, I really appreciate it! I have worked with B...
  • Topi: I have used Mammut RAS Light 30 for two past seasons (Euro). No durability ...
  • Lou Dawson 2: All fine Dave, appreciate the industry voice chiming in here with useful st...
  • Mammut Dave: Forgot to mention--regarding durability, with any of these light packs you ...
  • Mammut Dave: Harpo and Lou--a bit of info on the light fabric from Mammut. These two pa...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Maciej, in my opinion not quite a stiff feeling as TLT6-P, a bit stiffer th...
  • Lou Dawson 2: Scott, if lasting is your concern, when doing shell fit without liner you p...
  • Lou Dawson 2: John, I'd say your view is accurate. Until they reduce the weight and cost ...
  • John S: I have a little bit older BCA Float model, and this fall I'm helping my dau...
  • Scott: I got a 28 shell and seems tight with 1.5 fingers....may up it to the 29, b...
  • Lou2: There is no real industry standard for how lasts are measured. I go with SK...
  • Scott Allen: Scarpa site claims a 102 mm last in this model of F1 (one of the reasons I ...
  • Maciej Pike-Biegunski: This boot looks really appealing. My feet measure out at an 8D on a Brannoc...
  • Jake: Does this binding work with la sportiva spectre? Had assumed it would sinc...
  • Christian: I made the switch to these late last winter after giving up on my old TLT5 ...
  • Scott McCullough: You could make a bungy lock for split boarders. I bet someone might like t...

  Recent Posts


Facebook Twitter Google Instagram Youtube
Welcome to Louis (Lou) Dawson's backcountry skiing information & opinion website. Lou's passion for the past 50 years has been alpinism, climbing, mountaineering and skiing -- along with all manner of outdoor recreation. He has authored numerous books and articles about ski touring and is well known as the first person to ski down all 54 of Colorado's 14,000-foot peaks, otherwise known as the Fourteeners! Books and free ski touring news and information here.

All material on this website is copyrighted, the name WildSnow is trademarked, permission required for reproduction (electronic or otherwise) and display on other websites. PLEASE SEE OUR COPYRIGHT and TRADEMARK INFORMATION.

Backcountry skiing is dangerous. You may be killed or severely injured if you do any form of ski mountaineering, skimo randonnee and randonnée skiing. The information and news on this website is intended only as general information. While the authors and editors of the information on this website make every effort to present useful information about ski mountaineering, due to human error the information, text and images contained within this website may be inaccurate, false, or out-of-date. By using, reading or viewing the information provided on this website, you agree to absolve the owners of Wild Snow as well as content contributors of any liability for injuries or losses incurred while using such information. Furthermore, you agree to use any of this website's information, maps, photos, or binding mounting instructions templates at your own risk, and waive Wild Snow owners and contributors of liability for use of said items for ski touring or any other use.

Switch To Mobile Version