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Thread: Sidecountry??

  1. #1
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    Sidecountry??

    I have ben hearing this term or "Slackcountry" a bit lately and was wondering what defines this. Is Silverton sidecountry? Is it a drainage next to a resort or OB that feeds back into a resort? Terrain that one could bootpack to. Is Wolverine cirque Alta sidecountry. What does this term mean to you? Just wondering.
    "When the child was a child it waited patiently for the first snow and it still does"- Van "The Man" Morrison
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  2. #2
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    Its a chance for the purists to bag on the resort skiers.

    I have heard it refer to anything accessed by a resort or lift.

    Interestingly, it does not apply to highway pass skiing, which in many places can be done without skinning. Maybe thats where the phrase slackcountry comes in handy.

    Personally, I dont mind calling it all backcountry. To me, if you are on your own, with gear and training, skiing virgin snow on unmarked trails you are in the backcountry.

    Otherwise, what then is backcountry?
    Is an approach skin required? How many miles deep do you have to go before begining your ascent?

    Is it just enough that you skin what you ski, trading vert for vert no matter how you get there? That way you can be a righteous "backcountry" dude by taking your noisy polluting snowmobile deep into the forest.

    Hell, is skinning even required? If you use your sled to avoid hiking or skinning alltogether, but are far from civilization, is this backcountry also?

  3. #3
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    I don't think it's used to bag on resort skiers. It just refers to resort accessed backcountry, which in many cases implies a different equipment setup.
    A lot of people earn their turns. Some just get bigger checks.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mountain Junkie
    I don't think it's used to bag on resort skiers. It just refers to resort accessed backcountry, which in many cases implies a different equipment setup.
    sounds right to me. around lcc we further differentiate by calling stuff across the street "frontcountry". that means i don't mind carrying heavy gear and if i need to bail for work i can just ski right down to the car. sidecountry would be <15min access. if you go far out enough you'll need a full setup (extra clothes, food, xt water, etc)

  5. #5
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    Angry

    I'm an inbounds purist. Anyone who doesn't hammer ice bumps with me is G A T.

    that is all.

  6. #6
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    i support yetimang's definition.

  7. #7
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    Sounds like a bunck of city slickers thinking too much!

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    I understood it to be smoothly sliced spam braided into dynamic tendrils of macrame' masquerading as some helical demiurge with a brown wad stuffed inside the nose of some anorexic sumo wrestler.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by kailas
    Sounds like a bunck of city slickers thinking too much!
    you actually used the term city slickers? amazing.

  10. #10
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    Easily accessed (could be via resort, road, or skinning) terrain that sees high user traffic (comparatively). Hazards are still present but the perceived risk is lower because of ignorance or laziness. Can go by sidecountry, frontcountry, slackcountry, or not cool enough for uber cool Colorado hardcore Kailas country
    Last edited by cj001f; 11-18-2005 at 12:52 PM.
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  11. #11
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    High test naugahyde dream catcher mounted on the pudenda of some writhing wastrel, the supreme succubus of malign intent, the nadir of nubility, the paragon of puce. Wrapped in proscuitto, night and Machievellian sweetmeats, redirecting requests and spoofing cream filled canolli soaked in darkest bowls of pudding like espresso. Electric fruit, diesel doilies, lacy oilcans and unguents of squid livers slather on her eyebrows. Oh what pains for beauty.
    Merde De Glace On the Freak When Ski
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buster Highmen
    High test naugahyde dream catcher mounted on the pudenda of some writhing wastrel, the supreme succubus of malign intent, the nadir of nubility, the paragon of puce. Wrapped in proscuitto, night and Machievellian sweetmeats, redirecting requests and spoofing cream filled canolli soaked in darkest bowls of pudding like espresso. Electric fruit, diesel doilies, lacy oilcans and unguents of squid livers slather on her eyebrows. Oh what pains for beauty.
    Beefheart??

  13. #13
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    this thread shows potential.

  14. #14
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    Hmmm, I opened this thread thinking it was all a joke, but now I am liking this theory.

    My buddies and I have always joked that resort skiing is The Frontcountry.

    I kinda like this sidecountry idea. Just the days where you are taking your safety gear and a pack up on the mountain with you. It would just be a level where you are prepared for either the resort or going on a short hiking/sidestepping adventure ob.

    Really this can even boil down to having to different packs for the occasion.

    I'm IN.
    Donjoy to the World!

  15. #15
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    pirate country

    Quote Originally Posted by Huckwheat
    Hmmm, I opened this thread thinking it was all a joke, but now I am liking this theory.

    My buddies and I have always joked that resort skiing is The Frontcountry.

    I kinda like this sidecountry idea. Just the days where you are taking your safety gear and a pack up on the mountain with you. It would just be a level where you are prepared for either the resort or going on a short hiking/sidestepping adventure ob.

    Really this can even boil down to having to different packs for the occasion.

    I'm IN.
    can be explained as...using your sled.. and pirating the goods... "there's a pirate style in everyone out there"..::: the snowcat guides sometimes refer to sleders as pirates....

  16. #16
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    bumpers 4
    going on a decade later
    and the human powered ski recreation market sure has grown and resorts are lookin 4 their share
    any thoughts as to what this term means now?
    "When the child was a child it waited patiently for the first snow and it still does"- Van "The Man" Morrison
    "I find I have already had my reward, in the doing of the thing" - Buzz Holmstrom
    "THIS IS WHAT WE DO"-AML -ski on in eternal peace
    "I have posted in here but haven't read it carefully with my trusty PoliAsshat antenna on."-DipshitDanno

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by skifishbum View Post
    bumpers 4
    going on a decade later
    and the human powered ski recreation market sure has grown and resorts are lookin 4 their share
    any thoughts as to what this term means now?

    It means a different marketing ploy to shake the sheckles from the rubes bibs?

    It means very different things if you are at JHMR rather than Chestnut Mountain?

    It means, "we didn't have a label and now we do" cue up the magazine copy and extoll the virtues of a Hybrid boot, binding and ski that 85% of the owners will never use?
    I have been in this State for 30 years and I am willing to admit that I am part of the problem.

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  18. #18
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    I think Silverton might qualify as "side/slack country." It is lift accessed, but still take some additional effort. It is not really "patrolled". It has control work done on it. People perceive risk differently there. I brought a friend from the East Coast there, and (speaking from experience) try as you might, the average East coasters doesn't really get it at first about avalanche risk.

    Also, as a way to slag on resort skiers, it has now morphed into a way to slag on marketeers, NTTIAWWT.

    I guess you could parse it so more, but why bother?

  19. #19
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    to me sidecountry is whatever out of bounds I can access at a resort & use the chair to get back up
    Lee Lau - xxx-er is the laziest Asian canuck I know

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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by XXX-er View Post
    to me sidecountry is whatever out of bounds I can access at a resort & use the chair to get back up
    Same here on the EC, but we've had to make our own glades over the years. So it goes.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by XXX-er View Post
    to me sidecountry is whatever out of bounds I can access at a resort & use the chair to get back up
    My take is close to yours:

    Slack Country is any ob accessed from a lift and getting back to the lift
    without ever taking more than an straight alpine setup

    Side Country could require a bootpack a hike or a skin to access the ob
    once you have used the lift and a potential skin or hump out and Back to the lift.

    Back Country would be any/everything else (including a sled) and could
    include using the lift to gain as much altitude as you can but, after that
    you are on your own. Ending at a pick-up point or a skin back to civilization.

    So, are Heli and Cat laps BC?


    Quote Originally Posted by old goat View Post
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  23. #23
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    I believe it was Steve Romeo that defined it roughly as (paraphrased):

    slackcountry - accessed from a resort with NO additional human powered hiking, skinning, etc.

    sidecountry - accessed from a resort WITH additional human powered hiking, skinning, etc.

    frontcountry - human powered access but LOW commitment level due to proximity to car, road, resort, etc.

    backcountry - human powered access with a higher commitment level due to length of tour, location, etc.

    Silverton is unique and hard to fit into these parameters. It has boundaries, avy work, patrollers and a lift. Yet is mostly hike-to terrain. and requires a guide most of the year.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by whitewoodchuck View Post
    Same here on the EC, but we've had to make our own glades over the years. So it goes.
    A lot of runs have been cut here at the local area to the point there are more sidecoutry runs on the chair side than official runs

    That crazy fucker "Angle Parking" derives his name from a run we ribbon together but then I take off for work so buddy cuts the whole thing single handed which always impresses the hell out of me everytime I ski it
    Lee Lau - xxx-er is the laziest Asian canuck I know

  25. #25
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    Fat slap hog bonnet affixed with a protean Gordon knot umbilic to a point. Mobean meaning with no left, right or truth even, gleaned in the eyes of a multifaceted polylobbyist serving slim slices of sanity on toast. Denebean slime devils got nothing on the teraglomps of disdain reserved for each other doled out in seemingly deft proturbances of flaccid crankcases, failing compressors, tiny dactyls and streams of 5 byte Unicode. I smell the oatmeal calling.
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