What to pack if you’re planning to Hike and Snowboard in the Backcountry for the day…
A friend of mine recently asked me and some friends of ours to come out into the Australian backcountry for the day. Straight away I was pumped. I had spent some time in the backcountry in other parts of the world but I had never been out past the resorts here in Australia and was keen to see some new sites. The first thing that was asked is what do we need to take, what should we carry? Mind you I’m only talking a day trip. Not overnight. And based on spending 7 or 8 hours out in the mountains.
After a few emails back and forth here’s the list that my friend put together. Bare in mind my friend has a lot of experience in the backcountry and has a good knowledge of the terrain and landscape, however, I feel this list would be a great starting point for most day trip scenarios. I’ll break it down into categories.
Clothing (Starting from the bottom layer)
- Thermals bottom and top
- Shirt (not cotton) Something nylon or synthetic
- Fleece mid layer
- Down Jacket (Those ones that you pack down into a small travel bag are ideal)
- Outer shell Jacket
- Outer shell Pants
- Neck warmer/Balaclava
- Socks (Not Cotton, but either merino wool or specific snow socks)
- 20-30L Pack (Again it’s only the day)
- Poles (Something I forgot but wishes I hadn’t)
- Splitboard bindings
- Split board skins (Don’t forget these or you won’t be going anywhere)
- 20-30L pack
- For more extreme adventures you would also consider the following:
- Boot crampons
- Ice axe
- Splitboard crampons
- Map – Printed (Not just on your phone)
- Plastic Bags
- Toilet Paper
- Hand Sanitizer
- Food – For seven hours out there I made 4 sandwiches, high calorie. 2 Peanut butter and jam and 2 with cheese and butter. Also took a packet of snakes and a packet of chocolate, and 2 bananas. Mind you I didn’t end up going through it all. But being the first time out I thought it was better to be safe than sorry.
- Water – I packed 3 liters. Camelbak bladders are by far the easiest to carry. Also great to carry a spare litre bottle and a few aqua tablets for emergencies.
- Snow Shovel
- Avalanche Transceiver/Beacon – Everyone needs to have one not just one or two of you, and always do a test run with everyone before you head out.
- Emergency GPS Beacon – Everyone also needs to have one of these.
- Emergency Bivvy or Thermal Tarp
- Basic first aid kit
- UHF Radios
- Multitool or the like… eg Leatherman with a Screwdriver
- Binding Spares. Eg. Bolts, nuts, plastic strap
- Duct tape
- Cable ties
That’s pretty much it. That’s what we had for the day. It was amazing out there. We hit Southern Rams Head in Kosciuszko National Park. Check out my Instagram for a couple of photos and vids of the day.
Also before you head out; make sure to check out all the latest local weather forecasts and avalanche reports. Play it safe.
Anything you think we have missed; feel free to hit us up and let me know in the comments section below.