Winter ski trips: features, equipment, preparation and conduct

Skiing active tourism

Ski tourism is a favorite type of active recreation. This is a great way to improve your physical fitness, temper your body and strengthen your immune system, and increase your endurance. And besides, skiing is a lot of positive emotions from winter landscapes and communication with like-minded people.

Despite the seeming simplicity, a ski trip is not just a walk, so you need to carefully prepare for it. After all, skiers are in the cold for a long time and move not only on virgin snow, but also on rough terrain with thickets of vegetation, snowdrifts and rubble. Therefore, special attention is paid to equipment, clothing, footwear, as well as technical skills.

Before setting off, the route is carefully planned, if necessary, transport issues are resolved, the necessary equipment is selected, the trip time is calculated, food and water supplies, etc.

Given the fact that it gets dark early in winter, tourists set out early in the morning. The first rest is done in 15-20 minutes. after the start of the movement - this makes it possible to eliminate the identified problems in the equipment, put things in a backpack better, take off excess clothes if it is hot. Subsequent halts are made in 40 minutes, their duration is no more than 10 minutes. In strong wind and frost, the periods of movement are reduced to 30 minutes, and halts - to 3-5 minutes. However, there is no strict reference to the time of rest. The head of the group decides on their necessity based on expediency.

Along the route, a group of skiers follows each other in single file, maintaining a distance of about 5 m between them on a flat road and at least 10 m on slopes. The leader of the group goes first, the last one is one of the most experienced skiers. The leader of the campaign can take another place in the column - at the end or in the center. It all depends on the situation. The closing athlete controls the movement of the group and the condition of the participants, and also helps in minor repairs of equipment.

Very often a group of tourists has to lay a ski track on virgin soil For this, the one who goes first makes a track and steps aside, letting the others pass, and stands at the end of the column

At the halts, tourists sit on stumps, fallen trees, clearing them of snow and spreading a jacket. Sometimes they sit directly on a backpack or rest while standing, leaning on ski poles.

Ski tourism obliges athletes to have orienteering skills. In winter, this is especially difficult, because all landmarks are covered with snow. Therefore, the main assistants are the map and the compass, and the distance traveled is determined by the time and speed of movement. The tourist's map must contain information about the relief, vegetation in a given area, rivers and streams, about roads and routes, settlements, etc. The participants of the hike study this information in detail before setting off.

Gel-skiing has become one of the new directions. Daredevils climb to the top of the mountain by helicopter, and from there go down on skis. They assess the difficulty of the route from a height and develop tactics of movement.

Another kind is sandboarding. This is ski tourism for those who cannot wait for winter and snow. Athletes ski on the sands of the dunes, going to Algeria or Morocco for this.

Alpine skiing is a special sport chosen by those who love to ski on the slopes of the mountains. Ski resorts are open at any time of the year, where you can rent equipment, as well as use the services of a professional instructor. The skier can choose the slope according to his abilities, the difficulty of the slopes is determined by the color. However, even the easiest track requires a certain level of training.

The most important tourist equipment is, of course, skis. They must be durable and lightweight and are selected taking into account the predominant relief along the route of tourists. So, if the route runs mainly on a plain with minor changes in the landscape, then ordinary walking skis will do. For movement in forests, hills and off-road it is better to opt for the "Tourist" type skis, which are shorter, wider and stronger, do not fall into the snow.

Bindings for recreational skis are stiffer. For specialized tourist skis, semi-rigid with springs are more suitable. They allow you to put ski on any shoe: ski boots, boots and even felt boots. So that snow does not fall under the heel and does not accumulate there, rubber gaskets up to 3 mm thick are stuffed on the skis.

Ski tourism is an expedition lasting several days and weeks, rest at fashionable ski resorts and bases, comfortable walks along prepared trails. The development of this sport has experienced a real boom in recent years.

People of a wide variety of professions: engineers, doctors, builders, business leaders, ordinary employees, are passionately carried away by the romance of ski tourism. They strive to conquer new tracks and peaks, they love to overcome obstacles. And they are also healthy, strong people, because winter sports have an exclusively health-improving effect.

Preparing and organizing a ski trip

To enjoy your vacation and return home in good health, organize your trip properly. First, decide what you are putting on your skis for. It can be a leisurely ski trip, for the sake of admiring the surrounding beauty, ice fishing, hunting or sports. The purpose of the sortie is determined by:

  • the amount of food and water;
  • the contents of the first aid kit;
  • the components of the ski equipment;
  • the need for ski equipment ...

Remember! Most of the path is linear or circular.

A topographic or digital map (alternatively, Google Earth Pro) is suitable for planning stops. A satellite map will allow you to assess the type of relief, consider a convenient road shortening the route. Mark landmarks, resting places and overnight stays, if any, are provided for the hike. Calculate the time it will take to overcome this or that segment of the path.

It would be nice to scan the vastness of the World Wide Web, study the diaries of travelers who have been to the places of the upcoming campaign. This will allow you to choose the most suitable ski equipment, speed up your movement, and reduce the risk of force majeure situations.

Having decided on the route, determine the level of difficulty of the route. The most extreme regions include:

  • Yakutia.
  • Chukotka.
  • Ural.
  • Altai.
  • Eastern Sayan.
  • Baikal region.
  • Transbaikalia.
  • Kamchatka.
  • Taimyr.

The listed regions require endurance, self-confidence, impeccable study of the route, selection of suitable equipment. So for an inexperienced skier it is better to refrain from a solo hike.

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Good afternoon. This was the first time I took part in such an extreme trip and I must say, I thought I would not survive. BUT! Many thanks to our instructor Ilya for his training.

Ski tour is a discipline that has become fashionable in recent years, gradually replacing even freeriding. The magazines are full of pictures of wild and beautiful mountain peaks, and sports equipment manufacturers are developing lightweight and durable hiking equipment. The number of those who want to enjoy the union with the mountains is growing day by day.

The discipline is a hike in the mountains, which combines movement on the plain on special skis, ascents and extreme descents. Snowy virgin lands, where no man has stepped foot, picturesque slopes and the beauty of mountain landscapes - this is what attracts ski tour lovers. These ski trips provide an opportunity to ski where there is no ski infrastructure, practically at any time of the year.

The greatest difficulty in a ski tour is the ascent. It depends on the area where the route is laid. The same can be said for the descent. But in any case, the athlete is required to endurance and good physical shape, as well as knowledge of the basics of movement in the mountains and avalanche safety.

A ski tour is both sport and active recreation. This is one of the types of mountain tourism, in which the task of travelers is to go as far as possible, overcoming obstacles, making ascents using special equipment and rapid descents. A ski trip can be designed for more than one day, while tourists take tents and sleeping bags with them or stay overnight in hotels, camp sites or in mountain huts. Travelers are picked up from the end point by helicopter.

The routes for the ski tour are laid in remote areas of the mountains, where there are no lifts and crowds of tourists. In our country, the most popular are the Altai mountains, the Khibiny on the Kola Peninsula, the Caucasus, the Ural ridge and Kamchatka. Many people consider this type of relaxation to be the most harmonious, because it combines physical training, spending time in the fresh air, adrenaline and feeling like a pioneer.

The International Mountaineering Federation is developing the ski tour. Under its auspices, international tournaments are held in such disciplines as individual championship, team doubles race and relay race. The main goal of the competition is to demonstrate mastery of the technique of skiing. After all, moving on them is not as easy as it seems at first glance: here you need both certain skills and tactical thinking.

The ski tour does not require the participants to have a high level of skiing, but it implies at least basic skills of ascent and descent. So, when climbing a mountain on a loose snow cover, it is advisable not to tear off the skis from the surface and move the pelvic part of the body forward. And moving at a pace, you should load the heel so that the load is evenly distributed over the entire ski, preventing slippage. The position of the skier's shoulders should be as horizontal as possible.

The ski tour is known to have originated from freeriding. At the same time, some elements were simplified, while others, on the contrary, were complicated. For example, the longest freeride ascent is much shorter than the ski hiker's route. The rider can stop his lesson at any time, in particular, if the weather conditions change, the ski tourist is forced to continue moving, no matter what. For freeriding, the weight of the equipment does not really matter, which cannot be said about the ski tour, etc.

The differences between these disciplines need to be recognized, because what works for one person will not work for another. In addition, the specific type of ski trip determines the choice of equipment, the characteristics and parameters of which will differ markedly.

The specificity of the ski tourist route, which combines long ascents with fast descents. Submits specific hardware requirements. Without the right quality equipment, travel can be not only uncomfortable, but also not entirely safe.

In order to select the ideal ski pair, you should try to achieve the maximum compromise between weight and performance on the downhill.

Ski tour skis are lightweight. The configuration differs from the usual mountain by the presence of metal edging on the sides. In addition, they have a smaller width, and in the central part there is a waist - a narrowed section. There are special holes in the bow of the skis - a carabiner with straps is placed in them, which prevents the loss of the ski in the event of a fall.

Ski tourism is one of the most conservative areas in Russian tourism. The situation when a tourist, hung like a Christmas tree with high-tech devices, moves on old wooden skis that came from the middle of the 20th century, is observed everywhere. There are both completely objective reasons for this, and purely subjective ones, diligently supported by retrogrades from tourism.

I myself have used wooden skis and cable bindings for about 10 years, but last winter I realized that I needed to develop further. In the fall of 2016, he completely changed the set of skis for winter tourism, switching from the outdated "folk set", consisting of:

wooden (without edging) skis;

shoe covers with rubber overshoes.

Classic Touring Ski Set

For a new, modern ski touring kit, consisting of:

Plastic skis (notched and iron piped);

Ski touring kit for ski tourism

I already wrote about this, but for your convenience I will repeat the information here:

In the process of searching for information and choosing equipment, I encountered an information vacuum on the Internet regarding the use of ski touring equipment in ski tourism, as well as a number of deep-rooted negative opinions about this on the one hand.

And rave reviews of some owners of such equipment on the other. There was nothing left but to risk health and money, and try everything on yourself.

New Year's holidays made it possible, in the best possible way, to test new equipment in the conditions of the middle mountains of the Northern Urals at low temperatures and deep snow.

I have prepared this post based on personal experience, in order to highlight and possibly refute some deep-rooted negative opinions about the use of ski tour equipment in ski tourism. Such as:

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