0utdoor Retailer Day 3 — Backcountry Skiing Media Harmonic Convergence

Post by WildSnow.com blogger | August 11, 2007      

So, I’m walking the booths and checking out Arc’teryx, and who shows up but Mitch and Tim from Telemark Tips, then Dostie pops in (founder and publisher of Couloir mag, for those born yesterday), and along comes Brian Litz, co-founder of Backcountry Magazine. Even Steve Romeo of Teton AT showed up at the same time! This convergent event must have been caused by some kind of vibration resonating between a new boot plastic over at Scarpa and an aluminum cam alloy being kept secret at Black Diamond. I don’t know where I fit in exactly, but I guess I’m founder of WildSnow.com so there you go. It’s always amusing talking to Mitch about the dynamics of a radical web community such as he’s developed at Ttips. The guy has gained a huge amount of wisdom when it comes to how web forums operate, and how to make a useful and successful website that gets a community feel going. As many know, we didn’t want to do a “me-too” over at the Couloir Magazine forums, but rather create something that was more nuts-and-bolts and would add to the variety of backcountry skiing forums you can find on the web. Whether that worked or not is something the jury is still out on, but look for continued effort at BackcountryWorld (now owned by Backcountry Magazine) to keep going with that paradigm, albeit with more pizazz.

Backcountry skiing publishers.
The boys of the backcountry, from left: Lou, Litz, Tim, Dostie, Mitch. It’s been an interesting ride for all of us, to say the least. And it just keeps going.

By the way, to you collegiates out there, our visit to Utah State yesterday went well. Nice place and amazing options for backcountry recreation. Let’s just say I’m getting mighty interested in how you get a college degree and ski 100 days a season. That might make some good guest blogs from someone who might try it.

More later, and thanks everyone for visiting WildSnow.com!



6 Responses to “0utdoor Retailer Day 3 — Backcountry Skiing Media Harmonic Convergence”

  1. Greg August 11th, 2007 8:00 pm


    I live in Texas now. Not much skiing here. But I went to Utah State University and that’s where I learned to telemark ski. I took a class from the Environmental Engineering department. Great class! The final was a nice ski-in, camp, ski-out with good tests of our backcountry skills.

    Go for it!

  2. David Aldous August 13th, 2007 9:11 am

    There is also an avalanche class offered through the forestry department that is held at Snowbasin. It didn’t do anything for my engineering degree but it was the funnest class I ever took. Unfortunately I’ve let my coursework get in the way of the 100 ski days per year. Hopefully we get more snow this season. Last winter was pretty bleak.

  3. Tom G August 13th, 2007 12:37 pm

    I think the best way to ski 100 days a year while in college is to not go to school near the mountains. That’s how I did it. I went to school at an in-state university in the midwest that utilizes the quarter system. Every year I was able (3 total) I took the winter quarter off and spent December through March in Colorado. Really the goal should be not to ski as many days as possible while in school, but rather to go to school in order to set yourself up to ski as many days as possible for the rest of your life. Skiing, including BC, is expensive and not every career is suitable for living in a mountain community. Ski as much as you can while in school but make sure that your college studies will allow you to find employment in the mountains and not have to spend all of your time working two or three jobs. Just my two cents, but it’s worked for me.

  4. Chris (WWU) August 14th, 2007 1:38 am

    It’s a simple formula of how to get to the number 12 credits (full time student status for a school on the quarter system) without failing all of your classes and having to retake them.

    step 1) Online and distance learning classes are your friend. Both allow you to take real classes that can fill boring prerequisites (ie: English 101) without ever needing to attend classes. Just make sure that you don’t grab a class with too much reading or you’ll find yourself stuck in the lodge buried in the Great Gatsby.

    step 2) Take classes that meet a maximum of two times a week. This helps create a 4-5 day ‘weekend’ which by senior year any competent student has usually managed to find anyway.

    step 3) Fill up the remaining credits with a 2-credit skiing/snowboarding PE class. Generally this consists of showing up for a 2-3 hour ‘lesson’ which can usually be negotiated down to sharing back country stories with your jealous ‘professor’.

    Step 4) Take 7 years to graduate because you flunked most of your classes every winter quarter and had to retake them in the Spring. Thankfully the government has a plethora of student loans to hand out and doesn’t mention that you can’t spend them on a season’s pass.

  5. Lisa (the Mom) August 14th, 2007 6:54 am

    Good points, Tom. You figured out a great approach to blend the two endeavors. Thanks so much for your input.

  6. David Aldous August 14th, 2007 9:19 am

    Unfortunately USU and all of the Utah schools are on a semester system which makes it harder to take the winter off. I have had semesters where I was out of class by 10:30 every day of the week or only had classes Monday Wednesday and Friday(Unfortunatley the engineering department didn’t set up the schedule of classes in a way that Tuesday Thursday only classes were an option). It could also be possible to shift classes into the afternoon or evening which would allow ski trips in the mornings. The PE department classes meet once a week at Beaver Mountain which would get you one credit. They also offer climbing and kayaking classes(the kayaking class is more of a in the pool focused on rolling type of class). If you have questions about USU or the outdoor recreation opportunities around there feel free to contact me(I’m assuming that since I enter my e-mail to submit a reply you can access that to contact me or my username is dcaldous on the couloir/Backcontry magazine forum.)

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