Page 3 of 3 FirstFirst 1 2 3
Results 51 to 72 of 72
  1. #51
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Innsbruck, Austria
    Posts
    504
    Quote Originally Posted by geezerb View Post
    So if you go to a popular backcountry spot and ski mostly low danger stuff that happens to be around other people does that put them in a responsibility to help you if something actually did happen?
    Definitely not their responsibility, but given most mountain people are pretty cool almost all will/would help if neccessary.

  2. #52
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Chamonix
    Posts
    623
    Quote Originally Posted by coldwater View Post
    Definitely not their responsibility, but given most mountain people are pretty cool almost all will/would help if neccessary.
    It's interesting, this... of course people from other parties would stop to help in the case of an emergency or accident, just the same as you'd expect them to offer help even if you are skiing with a partner or a group. But there seems to be a certain degree of resentment or reluctance from some people towards a solo skier, which usually goes unvoiced, but manifests itself in the form of a stern tutting or a slight shaking of the head, if you chat to them in the lift line or halfway up a skin track.

    On a personal note, I'm happy to ski a lot of the same things solo as I would with a partner, because I'd only ever be on that kind of terrain if I was fairly confident about the conditions. What a partner is great for, however, is holding the other end of a rope if your balls aren't big enough (it's cold, they might shrink) to climb some stuff solo with skis on your back - a sudden rocky step or steep bit of ice or what-have-you.
    Short stories about snow and rock, and pictures, too

  3. #53
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Le Lavancher pour le weekend
    Posts
    3,339
    SheRa actually makes a really good point (perish the thought ;-)). Should your decision making or risk envelope be any different if you are alone or with someone else?

    In regards to the avy conditions, to me there is no difference in whether or not I'm alone or with someone/group. If it's not safe to be somewhere I don't want to be there even if I'm with someone. This is a big point of the F.A.C.E.T.S. series that has been going on at powder.com (everyone should check it out http://www.powder.com/stories/the-safe-zone/ ). Personally, the 3 really stupid/lucky experiences I've had all had serious elements of 'human factors' which got me into the situation (1x expert HALO, a guide I know well; 2x going along with someone else's decision). I've never gotten into any stupid situations by myself.

    In regards to my own personal safety, i.e. an injury sustained that could prove fatal if by yourself or rather benign if you're alone, this does play into my decision making difference between being with someone or being alone. To be honest, even this is a bit stupid because something stupid can happen even to the best of us (tree well, etc), but I can take a few of the risks of skiing alone in order to get what I want out of it. Risk/reward.

    edit-spelling
    'waxman is correct, and so far with 40+ days of tasting them there is no way my tongue can tell the difference between wood, and plastic made to taste like wood...but i'm a weirdo and lick my gear...' -kidwoo

  4. #54
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    The Continental Divide
    Posts
    7,273
    Quote Originally Posted by ulty_guy View Post
    SheRa actually makes a really good point (perish the thought ;-)). Should your decision making or risk envelope be any different if you are alone or with someone else?
    Hey I'm not trying to convince anybody of anything. Just sharing my thought processes and using this thread as a chance to do some thinking about the skiing I like to do. Early season is a good time to think.

    One thing that has really struck me while reading is to consider the difference between how I handle new terrain and familiar terrain, which I like to mix up equally. I'm definitely very tentative in new spots, like last year when I explored a wider range around Montezuma, this year some new places I have in mind in Clear Creek. I'll do initial hikes and looksees on my own but then usually want someone along at least the first time I ski a real line that may have some consequences to it. Why is that? Maybe not as much for rescue but for another set of eyes and analysis on the situation. I also try to talk to as many people as I can that have more experience than I do in a new area. For me understanding the slide history of a given spot is paramount. Like right now I would like to understand Coon Hill a little better before I get too crazy in there.

    On the other hand, I ski very freely in certain areas that I've been for years and years, like Loveland Pass, or really all the steep woods that I love to hit hard midwinter and find partners such a hindrance. I need to ask myself what mistakes I could be making in my assessments, taking situations for granted.
    Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each.
    Henry David Thoreau

  5. #55
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Le Lavancher pour le weekend
    Posts
    3,339

    Do you like to hit it RAW? - Ski or ride Solo?

    Nah, not accusing you. I agree about summer scoping. Do that a lot while hiking round with the kiddie in the backpack. I think you can get a better feel of terrain by looking at things when there's no, or much less snow on them.

    Ps- maybe doing a bit more solo would be good for people to see how their risk envelope changes when they're alone and how one should apply that to how they make decisions in a group.
    'waxman is correct, and so far with 40+ days of tasting them there is no way my tongue can tell the difference between wood, and plastic made to taste like wood...but i'm a weirdo and lick my gear...' -kidwoo

  6. #56
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    The Continental Divide
    Posts
    7,273
    Quote Originally Posted by ulty_guy View Post
    Nah, not accusing you. I agree about summer scoping. Do that a lot while hiking round with the kiddie in the backpack. I think you can get a better feel of terrain by looking at things when there's no, or much less snow on them.
    Didn't really mean summer hikes, mean more things like skinning to an opposite face to look at something straight on or just doing low angle routes and peeking down into something...but yeah bare ground is always interesting too. When I first go here I did a long walk up Silver Plume mountain, like 5 miles, and got an eyeful. I really despise downclimbing though. Bad for my body.
    Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each.
    Henry David Thoreau

  7. #57
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Park City
    Posts
    1,234
    I ski alone most of the time. I am very aware of risk. With the logistics of my life, I find it difficult to fit others into my late night and early morning adventures. I also find that it is difficult to screen who I do things with and thus find myself going back to childhood friends that I know and trust rather than the new guy. I stick to areas I know very well.

  8. #58
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    SLC
    Posts
    247
    I Tour alone often. I ditto everyone's remarks about skiing a safe line. i would like to add two thoughts:

    1) my route choice when i'm alone is always a familiar route. this keeps the risk factors down by knowing most likely all the contributing factors to assessing overall safety for route selection, line selection, and oh shit plan b options. because i'm in the Wasatch it is also usually routes where i often times end up skinning up directly behind someone or come across at least one other party throughout the day. I would argue against an earlier comment about using solo days to scope new terrain. i just don't feel comfortable doing that. i won't judge your decision to though. i do have a wife and kids and they always enter my mind when i head out.

    2) i used to kiteboard and kite ski ALOT. damn near gave up downhill during the winter for it. kiting is interesting in that on water you often go to a specific location where the conditions are usually good. there are usually other people there. it is also interesting to me the dynamic there. unless you are an expert flyer- it is very risky to launch a kite by yourself. much easier to do so on snow. so- inherent in the sport there is a buddy factor- you need/prefer someone to launch and catch your kite. there are also lots of inherent safety measures, and a code of conduct that will get you kicked out of a spot very quickly if you fuck up. i'm guessing this is because the feedback loop is so short- you hot launch a kite you are going for a ride instantaneously. you pick a bad back country route- it takes a much longer amount of time to get the bad feedback- i.e. cliffing out on a line, coming across a rollover with facets and wind loading, or simply miss-reading snowpack on the way up ala Mclean in last week's powder episode .

    how does the length of the decision feedback affect your decision making skills in the back country?

  9. #59
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Revelstoke
    Posts
    621
    I do the occasional solo tour. My rules are:

    1. Stay out of avalanche terrain.
    2. Stay in cellphone range.
    3. Only go places I'm familiar with.

    They're all pretty self-explanatory.

  10. #60
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Cruzing
    Posts
    9,119
    Quote Originally Posted by SheRa View Post
    Hey I'm not trying to convince anybody of anything. Just sharing my thought processes and using this thread as a chance to do some thinking about the skiing I like to do. Early season is a good time to think.

    One thing that has really struck me while reading is to consider the difference between how I handle new terrain and familiar terrain, which I like to mix up equally. I'm definitely very tentative in new spots, like last year when I explored a wider range around Montezuma, this year some new places I have in mind in Clear Creek. I'll do initial hikes and looksees on my own but then usually want someone along at least the first time I ski a real line that may have some consequences to it. Why is that? Maybe not as much for rescue but for another set of eyes and analysis on the situation. I also try to talk to as many people as I can that have more experience than I do in a new area. For me understanding the slide history of a given spot is paramount. Like right now I would like to understand Coon Hill a little better before I get too crazy in there.

    On the other hand, I ski very freely in certain areas that I've been for years and years, like Loveland Pass, or really all the steep woods that I love to hit hard midwinter and find partners such a hindrance. I need to ask myself what mistakes I could be making in my assessments, taking situations for granted.
    I was going to answer the question you proposed earlier, and then you went on and gave pretty much my answer.

    For me, I enjoy a good partner. One who I enjoy spending time with, as well as one who has insights I might consider to be valid. When going solo, I tend to stick with terrain that I know really well. Stuff I would consider my 'backyard', where I know the different lines, and know that I need to turn left around this tree to launch that hit that I like so much, followed by a short right hand traverse to that pillow line that should be set up perfectly right now kind of skiing. When I am inching along a knife ridge looking for the entrance to that coolie that I have seen from across the valley a few times, I do enjoy having a good partner around. So it has less to do with avi danger and much more to do with route finding. But the whole understanding the slide history of a spot does fit in with this calculation. As well as playing around and exploring a new cliff/ ini golf zone.

    But I really enjoy a good partner for a number of reasons. Mostly social. I go solo when I can't find someone I want to tour with. I am still willing to ski with new people, but I have two rules I follow these days. First, I prefer my group to be 2-3 people, and will definitely not go out with a group of more than 5. And I have a two strikes rule these days. If I see you do two stupid or inconsiderate things in the bc, that will be the last time I tour with you. I have not had to invoke that too often, but occasionally I've had to cut someone off my list.

  11. #61
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    northern BC
    Posts
    17,978
    Most people gotta work or whatever so I walk around up there alone going up to & around the ski area quite a bit more just mountain travel and not crazy aviy terrain
    Lee Lau - xxx-er is the laziest Asian canuck I know

  12. #62
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Cruzing
    Posts
    9,119
    Quote Originally Posted by XXX-er View Post
    Most people gotta work or whatever so I walk around up there alone going up to & around the ski area quite a bit more just mountain travel and not crazy aviy terrain
    Call Powdork. You usually don't even know he has to work until he is fifteen minutes late and you are on your exit to the trailhead. Which is a good 30 minutes from his job.

  13. #63
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    your vacation
    Posts
    1,703
    I do lots of solo touring and back country skiing I can get pretty far out and high up quickly

    funny this thread is up, cause all week I"ve been thinking about this trip I took a couple thanksgivings ago, there was good coverage of snow for scummit county and the sun came out and the temps went up so I went up, left pretty early in the morning, had a light jacket, pants, gloves hat, my ipod filled with tupac, tons of weed, and a camera nothing else. nice six hour trek way up into some interesting places, covered lots of untouched far away ground, it was a killer day for sure unforgetable, just decided I"d ski out into the mountains that day without a care in the world, its a good way to ski for sure

  14. #64
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Tahoe
    Posts
    12,250
    Definitely not their responsibility, but given most mountain people are pretty cool almost all will/would help if neccessary.
    If a guy is walking down the street by himself and gets clipped by a car is it other passersby responsibility to help. Personally, I think so. I don't know why it would be any different in the backcountry where most everyone at least shares a common interest.
    powdork.com - new and improved, with 20% more dork.

  15. #65
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    northern BC
    Posts
    17,978
    Quote Originally Posted by Ottime View Post
    Call Powdork. You usually don't even know he has to work until he is fifteen minutes late and you are on your exit to the trailhead. Which is a good 30 minutes from his job.
    whats 15 min when powdork is a 2 or 3 day drive from here
    Lee Lau - xxx-er is the laziest Asian canuck I know

  16. #66
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Co
    Posts
    1,175
    I usually head out with others though sometimes taking a half day vacation and getting an early solo trip in is just what I need. The thing that scares me about solo trips is that a simple injury can pretty quickly become life threatening. I guess if you have a PLB then you're probably better off than having a buddy (I don't count on anyone to dig me out and my beacon is only counted on for a body recovery) but still, there's something about having a buddy to help should the need arise.

  17. #67
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Innsbruck, Austria
    Posts
    504
    Quote Originally Posted by powdork View Post
    If a guy is walking down the street by himself and gets clipped by a car is it other passersby responsibility to help. Personally, I think so. I don't know why it would be any different in the backcountry where most everyone at least shares a common interest.
    Rather less likely that you'd be putting yourself in danger helping someone on the street.

    As I said, pretty much everyone (inc. me) in the backcountry would help, but there's no obligation.

  18. #68
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    805
    great discussion! What about venturing into the backcountry without your beacon? solo perhaps? Maybe it was left at home, maybe your batteries were drained? Or maybe your old enough to remember never wearing them?

    I will admit I HAVE done this before, surely not on purpose however that DID NOT keep me from spending time recreating in the outdoors. It sure as hell DID change my approach to the mountains on those days.

    Trying to understand the psychology behind some of the "tools" and decisions people make. Does age factor into the equitation, does your "profession" dictate how rad you get in the backcountry?

  19. #69
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Squaw valley
    Posts
    2,567
    I dont understand skiing more conservatively in avie terrain when skiing solo.

    In my mind, avie danger is the same wether you are alone or with a partner.

    Sure, he MAY be able to dig you, but half the deaths are caused by trauma, and thats the same, alone or not.

  20. #70
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Posts
    900
    Quote Originally Posted by rod9301 View Post
    I dont understand skiing more conservatively in avie terrain when skiing solo.

    In my mind, avie danger is the same wether you are alone or with a partner.
    yup. "i like going with others so i can ski the good stuff" is a classic line i've heard a time or two. strange.

    Sure, he MAY be able to dig you, but half the deaths are caused by trauma, and thats the same, alone or not.
    ya but the trauma is lessened when when the victim is dug out by metal vs lexan.

  21. #71
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Posts
    10
    I love it, I just dial it back a bit and leave a detailed plan with someone I trust. Sure something could happen but I could also get hit by a bus...I think it's a little safer than driving around a big city.

  22. #72
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    10
    I've skied solo a fair bit.
    One of the big disadvantage is the lack of feedback in snowpack analysis/discussion.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •