WildSnow Headed for Europe

Post by WildSnow.com blogger | November 29, 2007      

I got the news about a week ago and been scrambling ever since. Dynafit will be hosting WildSnow again for coverage of their yearly product launch. This time the event will take place at the lofty perch of the Simonyhutte in Austria, on the Dachstein massif. Word is that the Austrian gear tweakers have some new stuff that will blow minds, so to say I’m excited about this is the understatement of the century. As last year, I’ll be meeting up with Dynafit binding inventor Fritz Barthel and spending some time with him and his family for a few days, then we’ll head up to the Dachstein. They’ve got snow, so I’m looking forward to some real euro style ski mountaineering out of the Simony, perhaps we can even climb the Dachstein if weather cooperates. As last year, it’s a huge honor for WildSnow to be included in this, and we appreciate it immensely.

Red arrow indicates the location of this year’s Dynafit product launch. Internet connection for blogging? Who knows…. but we’ll make it work somehow.

All that said, don’t worry about us being too “Dynafit” around here (as if we aren’t enough of that already). Beyond the tickets for my trip in January, our whole family has reservations on a jet bound for Munich in March, where we’re planning on launching a huge three weeks European dream vacation. Along with a few days of roots tourism visiting my wife’s family origins, we’ll be doing all sorts of mountaineering adventures in the Tyrol, along with factory tours and gear coverage of Scarpa & Garmont boots, Trab skis, more Dynafit coverage, mountain culture immersion (can you say lederhosen?), and so on.

Having been over there last winter, I’m feeling a bit more relaxed about trip preparations. But it’s still tough packing light and making sure you’ve got the right backcountry gear to handle a variety of conditions. Most recent question was what selection of ski pants and casual wear pants to bring? Conclusion so far: I’ll bring a pair of OR Tremor Windstopper softshell pants for use in winter conditions (yes, I’m an optimist), and one pair of lighter duty soft-shell pants, Cloudveil Rayzar, in case global warming is in full force (or if it’s simply sunny-warm type conditions up on the glaciers). For casual wear during hikes to gasthauses and strolls on windy winter streets I still favor my Cloudveil Switchback pants, and I’ll also have a few pair of regular slacks.

Big dilemma is connectivity. I’m rarely happy with the wireless provided by hotels and hot spots, mainly because of the lame internal antenna in my notebook computer. To fix that I ordered a PCMCIA wireless card with an external antenna connector, along with an antenna. Plan is to disable the internal wireless card in the notebook, install the PCMCIA with antenna, and get a noticeable improvement in connection quality. Ultimately, I’d like to install an external antenna connector in the notebook, but don’t have time for such hardware hacking before the big trip. As for cell phones, I picked up a cheap Euro phone that’ll probably be fine for the occasional call. Wouldn’t mind having a PDA that could do email via a cell connection, but that kind of tech is probably beyond my finances. All fun and interesting!


Please Enjoy A Few Suggested WildSnow Posts


22 Responses to “WildSnow Headed for Europe”

  1. mike s. November 29th, 2007 10:36 am

    Assuming you can find a good wireless connection, you should look into Skype. Free, easy, and decent quality. You just need to bring a set of headphones with a mic.

  2. Lou November 29th, 2007 10:48 am

    Mike, indeed, Skype is on the list!

  3. Greydon Clark November 29th, 2007 11:11 am

    No blue jeans for the trip? That sounds a little unAmerican.

  4. Lou November 29th, 2007 12:05 pm

    Greydon, LOL that you brought that up! I was contemplating writing about how everyone over there seems to wear jeans, and there I am in Docker type stuff. I’m wondering if I should bit the bullet of fashion and get some jeans?

  5. Dmitriy Yegoshin November 29th, 2007 4:24 pm

    Hey Lou,

    /shameless plug
    Pick up a Nokia e61i, it will bring you much magic for your trips. With a full qwerty keypad and a microSD slot you can blog and post photos from the go (put the microSD into the cannon you really like using an adapter). I own this phone and its AWSOME! even though it doesn’t have a US 3G and only european 3G. It even has WiFi built in to make those FREE VOIP call from euro back to the states. Email me if you need more info.

    here you go: http://www.e-series.org/archives/category/nokia-e61i
    /end plus

    P.S. I dont even work in the cell phone industry my old phone was 4 years old

  6. Marc November 29th, 2007 4:57 pm

    Carhartts Dude. Totally American.

  7. Paul November 29th, 2007 5:19 pm

    Some Carhartts are made in Mexico.

  8. Tom Gosiorowski November 29th, 2007 10:30 pm

    Lou, I think you’ve gotta try to do the real time on the fly blogging with a cell phone. A couple of years ago there were a couple euros who were doing a ski tour across europe and using cell phone/pda to put up daily reports. Their web site has been taken down, but it was really cool to follow along in real time. Use your media contacts to find some company like Palm to provide you with a phone for the purpose of show casing the capabilities. It’s no more commercial than Toyota providing a truck! There is a real practical aspect to this too – imagine being on a multiday trip and being able to access up to date weather and avy forecasts the whole time.

  9. Jonas November 30th, 2007 5:06 am

    Carhartt rules in Europe to!

  10. Lou November 30th, 2007 7:03 am

    Tom, good ideas, I’m working on it. Glitch is making sure it works in Europe. Last year I called Cingular and asked them if my cell phone would work in Europe, and they assured me it would, of course it didn’t and that created a bit of a problem. So far all I know is that I need to acquire an unlocked PDA that has the wireless options and cell phone…

  11. Paul November 30th, 2007 7:30 am

    I am a firm believer in the greatness of America, don’t get me wrong. Buuuuut, I was just browsing the hut’s web site, (Simonyhutte in Austria link) and see that one of the “Team”s title is “Bar”.
    The Tenth Mountain Huts are great and all, but the fact that there is a stocked bar up in that remote hut makes me think that Austria might not be that bad either.

  12. Lou November 30th, 2007 8:37 am

    Paul, that is truth.

  13. matt November 30th, 2007 11:56 am

    Simony hut is a nice place. They even had a dog sled team last time I there. I was skiing near there a few weeks ago in waist deep powder. Lets hope it stays that way.
    If you have a chance definitely hit up Krippenstein. Best lift accessed backcountry skiing around. You can actually tour up to simony hut from the top of krippenstein.

  14. Swifty November 30th, 2007 4:32 pm

    Look forward to seeing those trip reports! Just moved to Germany this summer myself, so always looking for good beta. Here’s another good website for Hutten in Austria.


  15. Grant December 1st, 2007 12:38 pm

    “Word is that the Austrian gear tweakers have some new stuff that will blow minds”-heard/seen photos of a TLT race boot that looks to have a plastic lower and a carbon fiber upper and a similar lock to the F1. Looks pretty sweet, but not exactly mind blowing, as the Frenchmen has been making those in the garage for over the last 5 yrs.
    I am sure that they will have much more than that though!
    Lou if you are near Grenoble, France during your Euro travels give me a shout, place for you to stay and a factory visit that you might be interested in;-)

  16. Lou December 1st, 2007 1:54 pm

    Oh, if it blows minds then great, if not it’ll be fun anyhow. I saw a bunch of those carbon fiber hybrid boots when I was over there last winter, they were indeed light but the upper was so stiff I couldn’t see it being very comfortable, sort of like having a boot upper made of steel… I of course wanted some anyway (grin).

  17. Grant December 2nd, 2007 12:43 pm

    Fun, that’s an understatement, looks like its gonna be a great trip!
    I am sure the folks at Dynafit have more than a carbon upper race boot to show off.
    Interesting posts on http://www.skimo.org , a guy has put a carbon upper on his F1 race boots.

  18. Marko Pyhajarvi December 3rd, 2007 2:24 am

    Sounds good. I wish I could go climbing in Dachstein as well.

    I agree with blogging real-time. It would be great to read your posts from the mountains! Just inform if you’re going to do it. I’ll be reading your posts!

  19. Robert Martijn Blanes December 4th, 2007 10:50 am

    Hi there lou,

    Great to here you’re coming to the Dachstein massive. You absolutely have to ride the Krippenstein area. One of the last freeride/touring secrets of the Alps. Last year it was even better rated for its offpiste skiing than Verbier and LaGrave. (in a german mag…) Anyway maybe we’ll see eachother on the mountain,

    Robert Martijn Blanes

  20. Clark December 22nd, 2007 7:02 pm

    Hey Lou – any more specifics on the Wildsnow/Euro trip in Jan? A friend from Denver and I are headed to Austria Jan 13th-27th, flying into Munich for starters. After that pretty much everything fair game. Any beta on the region/tours much appreciated. Happy turns

  21. Lou December 22nd, 2007 7:28 pm

    Hi Clark, I’m relatively clueless as to beta for Austria, am depending on the locals. They’ve got snow, so it’s pretty much point & shoot from what I’ve heard.

  22. Brandon April 6th, 2011 8:57 pm

    I realize this is an older post. I was wondering if you or your readers know of
    any blogs or websites that have a meet up sections on their site for international backcountry skiers. Similar to a Rockclimbing.com website. I’m heading to Chamonix in April. I was going with partners but now they have bailed. I’m sure I’ll meet some folks but I’m just trying to preplan a little bit. Just looking for some options as opposed to paying for guides.
    Thanks for any help.

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