Safety first! This motto applies for every ski tour - whether for beginners or professionals. In order to get up and back down the mountain safely we summed up some safety instructions in our third blog article of our ski tour series. Are you planning your first ski tour? Take a look at our other blog articles about preparation and equipment.
First things first: Check the weather and avalanche forecast
A must-do before every tour is checking the weather and avalanche forecast of the certain region. Even if the weather forecast predicted sunshine the whole week, the weather may change at short notice. Strong wind, bad visibility and snowfall increase the risk of accidents and endanger the ski tourers. The avalanche forecast is published daily. It provides important information concerning the avalanche warning level: Avalanche warning level 1 (low danger) and avalanche warning level 5 (high danger).
How can I prepare myself for emergencies?
An important component of ski touring is the emergency equipment. Before starting your first tour you should make yourself familiar with the safety applications. In case of an emergency the fast usage can save lives. That is the reason why avalanche courses are definitely recommended in advance.
The avalanche transceiver is a transmitting and receiving device. Thanks to the receiving function it leads helpers to the buried victims in case of emergency. The avalanche transceiver should be carried in a closed pocket directly on the body. Otherwise the device can be torn away by an avalanche.
The avalanche shovel is also part of the emergency equipment. With the shovel it is possible to excavate a buried person in the snow. Nowadays, many ski touring backpacks provide an extra space for the shovel. Therefore, it is easy to carry it with you along the tour.
The avalanche probe is next to the avalanche transceiver and the avalanche shovel an important part of the safety equipment. It is a mechanical aid that helps to search for buried people. By pulling the cord, the probe can become up to 4 meters long. It is indispensable when you are searching for subjects under the snow.
Are there further safety applications for ski touring?
To be on the safe side and well prepared for emergencies, the following safety applications are also recommended: A first aid kit, a sleeping bag cover (windproof and waterproof bag for overnight stays outdoors) and a backpack with an airbag system.
NAKED Optics Insider Tip: You don’t want to worry about getting cold on the tour? We have something for you: The NAKED Optics thermal underwear. It keeps you warm during exhausting mountain tours and offer a perfect moisture regulation.
Credits: Hanna Hofer