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Backcountry Skiing

Side Country, Slack Country, Back Country- The what ever name you call it by it boils down to the same thing. Powder skiing is where it is at and if you spend all your time inside the resort you will run out of fresh turns quickly. The solution is having an alpine ski set up that you can also hike to the top in. You no longer have to sacrifice speed and power for uphill performance. On the other hand a super light weight set up will save your legs on the skin track.

Pine Mountain Sports is Bend’s only full service backcountry ski shop. We feature quality alpine touring, telemark ski and splitboard snowboard gear and accessories from companies like Black Diamond, G3, Voile, Rossignol, K2, 22 Designs, Backcountry Access, and Dynafit.

Pine Mountain Sports rents it all too. So if you just want to try some new skis or need to rent a full set up of avalanche beacon, boots, skis, climbing skins, and poles we can set you up to maximize your time on the snow.

We stock Voile DIY Split Kits, Skins, and Light Rail Bindings. Splitboards are a backcountry snowboarders best friend. Fairly easy and inexpensive to make yourself using the Voile Split Decision kit, and even easier to buy if you have a deeper wallet. Splitboards allow the rider to skin their way up any mountain as an alpine tourist would, but with the added function of transforming the two planks back into a traditional snowboard to score fresh pow all the way down. The journey up is almost as much fun as the ride down. Easy access to Tumalo Mtn and Vista Butte make for a great adventure even if you just have a couple hours to throw down before work.

Central Oregon has some amazing backcountry skiing opportunities. Be sure to check out the current snow conditions update from the Deschutes National Forest. We would like to echo the advice from the Deschutes National Forest regarding safety while traveling in the back country:

Backcountry users venturing into avalanche terrain should be aware of potential risk and should be skilled at recognizing potential avalanche areas and snowpack conditions and act accordingly. Be responsible for your own safety and that of others around you; perform careful snowpack evaluations, stability tests and make safe route decisions. Avalanche potential can increase with increasing slope angle, snowfall, rain, wind, changing temperatures, other factors and avalanche hazard can escalate in a short time. If you do not have avalanche training, consider sticking to low profile, non-avalanche prone terrain.

Ski/snowboard resorts on the Deschutes do provide a high level of avalanche
control on their managed slopes within bounds. Keep in mind that during severe
weather events, even these areas may be subject to elevated avalanche conditions.

Avalanche Education: For information on avalanche education and safety practices, visit these sites:

Forest Service National Avalanche Center Avalanche Awareness

Northwest Weather and Avalanche Center

Central Oregon Avalanche Association

For guide services, yurt rentals and education:

Three Sisters Backcountry

Oregon Ski Guides