Backcountry Program December Newsletter

The inaugural JHSC 4-Month Backcountry Program is officially off and running!  Our first after school skinning session up Snow King was last week.  Our day started with a beacon searching, team building exercise!  Four avalanche transceivers were buried around the base of Snow King. Athletes were then required to combine knowledge and use teamwork to uncover the transceivers, keep in mind some of these athletes had never used the gear before.  Each beacon had a question attached to it, to help break the ice and get to know each other.  The athletes did great, and were able to find all of the buried beacons.  This was just scratching the surface on the topic, and companion rescue will be a topic in our program as the season progresses.  With some more practice we have no doubt these athletes will be able to pass a professional level transceiver search test.

We wrapped up the second half of the evening with a skin up to the top of Cougar lift on Snow King's uphill route.  For some of the athletes this was their first time on skins.  Everyone was extremely excited and had a great time skinning up the king!  Our next couple of sessions will focus on refining our uphill skinning techniques, efficient transitions form skiing to skinning, and mastering the art of clipping in to those tiny touring toe pieces.  We still have room for one more athlete in this program, please contact Blake Votilla if interested!

In other news: 
JHSC Beacon, Shovel, Probe, Pack kits are in!  These are available for checkout and FREE for all JHSC athletes.  Please contact to check out a kit, or find Blake / Julie in the office.

Janurary 3 - Fully guided touring day in Grand Teton National Park.  This event is open to all skiers and split boarders over the age of 12 and costs $160, professionally guided by Jackson Hole Mountain Guides.  Transportation included to and from Snow King.  Touring gear is available for day rental at various shops. Pack kits as mentioned above are great for this!  This day was a big hit last year as we had amazing untracked powder skiing on 25 short.  Please signup here or contact Blake Votilla to join on this great opportunity! 

March 22-25 - Montana Hut Trip.  We are putting together a hut trip to Downing Mountain Lodge in the Bitterroot Mountains near Hamilton, Montana.  This trip is open to athletes with some ski touring experience.  Joining on one of our guided touring days in the park would be great prep for this.  Stay tuned for more info and prices as we get the details set for this trip.  Feel free to contact with questions.

This week we begin our first club wide avalanche training events.  The Alpine U12 and U16 teams will both have avalanche training sessions.