How to go off-piste skiing for the first time

There are two types of skiers: those who enjoy skiing in the resort on freshly prepared and setup up tracks and those who enjoy the thrill of exploring the hinterland and fresh soft powder.

If you already feel comfortable with downhill skiing and are looking for a new challenge, why not consider off-piste skiing? With the right training, a bit of work and the right safety knowledge, you can get everything you need to know to navigate virtually any terrain in the world.  Before you head out on the slopes, make sure to understand how to wash ski jacket.


Although the name changes from person to person and location (some call it downhill or cross-country skiing), the heart of off-piste skiing remains the same everywhere. The goal is to enjoy the beauty of nature intact and not marketed.

When you look at skiing off-piste in a regular ski resort, it’s like comparing primitive wild camping to camping in a populated campsite with public restrooms and prefabricated fireplaces. With off-piste skiing, you are surrendered to yourself, even in more difficult circumstances.


While many experienced skiers and snowboarders jump at the chance to try off-piste skiing, others need a little more courage to get started. If you qualify as a member of this last category, look at the following three points to get an idea of ​​why off-piste skiing is both exciting and rewarding:

• Difficult. Most off-piste skiers are initially interested in the perceived challenge. It is exponentially more difficult than regular skiing and is a true test of skill, talent and skill. In addition, it is a demanding physical activity and an excellent form of alternative but rigorous activity.

• Beautiful landscape. Since off-piste skiing takes place in the backcountry and in uninhabited slopes, the landscape is almost always superior to the public trails and trails. This is especially true in Whistler and British Columbia, where the views are incredible and picturesque.

• Fewer people. The third reason for trying off-piste skiing is for peace and quiet. You are almost always alone and rarely come into contact with other skiers. This reduced traffic allows you to dictate the speed, direction and pace of your descent. Also, prepare yourself well if you want to stay here the all season. Feel free to have a look to our what to pack for a ski season guide.


ski jump off piste

If you are interested in off-piste skiing but haven’t tried it yet, start learning as much as you can. Here are some basic tips to get you started:

• Never go alone. When appropriate safety precautions are followed, off-piste skiing is relatively safe; Crossing the snow in the landscape, however, poses inherent dangers. You should never try to go alone, especially during your first races.

• Talk to people about your projects. But even though there are risks, many people go alone. If you eventually make the personal choice of skiing alone on off-piste trails and mountains, it is important to at least inform people of your plans. So if something happened, people would know that you are gone and have an idea of ​​how close you are.

• Have a plan. Never leave the course without any kind of plan. You can usually find a print guide, local resource or other resource that explains the best ski areas, what to avoid and what conditions to expect. This information can be invaluable if you are in an uncompromising situation.

• Wear proper equipment. Every skier off the piste should have some basic tools and equipment in case something happens in the back limit. These include a lighthouse (or an avalanche transceiver) that allows you to be found if you are buried in an avalanche, a shovel that helps you out of the gallery’s depth, a backpack with food and water and adequate clothing to keep warm.

• Welcome speed. Whether you like it or not, you get caught in the snow,” says ski photographer Aryeh Copa, “speed lets your skis float to the surface, where it’s easier to turn your skis like the wings of an airplane, you need speed to lift .

• Pay attention to the posture. Attitude is of the utmost importance for off-piste skiing. The slightest imbalance can cause you to fall and hurt you. Your position should be narrow and squat (almost like)

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