Backcountry Magazine 125 - The Great Northern Issue

The Great Northern Issue is a journey to North America’s higher latitudes. Inside, Ryan Stuart skis along the route that claimed Kwäday Dän Ts’ìnchi, the continent’s oldest naturally mummified human, and Louise Lintilhac explores a quiet slice of mountains in southern British Columbia. Plus, we go deep on Rogers Pass,...
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The Great Northern Issue is a journey to North America’s higher latitudes. Inside, Ryan Stuart skis along the route that claimed Kwäday Dän Ts’ìnchi, the continent’s oldest naturally mummified human, and Louise Lintilhac explores a quiet slice of mountains in southern British Columbia. Plus, we go deep on Rogers Pass, B.C. to understand how and why this region of the Selkirk Mountains that’s bisected by Canada’s deadliest rail line became North America’s preeminent ski-mountaineering zone.


THE GREAT NORTHERN ISSUE

THE UNKNOWN PATH
Six hundred miles south of Alaska between the towns of Golden and Revelstoke, British Columbia, a region of the Selkirk Mountains 11 times the size of Colorado's 23 ski areas combined welcomes a nearly perfect balance of storms, humidity and temperature. This topography, bisected by Canada's deadliest rail line and its most expensive highway, is arguably the center of the most historically significant ski mountaineering zone in all of North America. This is the story of Rogers Pass, B.C., from its tumultuous discovery through its modern era at the forefront of ski mountaineering.

LOST AND FOUND
Three hundred years ago, a man in his late teens perished while crossing the mountains surrounding the Samuel Glacier on the B.C.-Yukon-Alaska border. His body and belongings became perfectly preserved in the ice until 1999, when three hunters found the oldest natural mummy to be discovered in the Americas, and those remains unlocked a treasure of information about how indigenous people lived in the north before contact with Europeans. Last April, Ryan Stuart headed to the Samuel Glacier to explore the mountains that claimed Kwäday Dän Ts'ìnchi—the Long Ago Person Found.

DEPOSITION

CONTRIBUTORS

PERSPECTIVE: POLE SHOT

EDITOR'S NOTE: SUBJECTS IN MOTION

STRAIGHT LINES
Old friends in new places, afterhours touring and how to stand up for your favorite ski line.

BLOWN IN

THE KLAMATH KNOT
On the California/Oregon border, a newly expanded national monument—and the Klamath and Siskiyou Mountains within it—hangs in the balance.

WISDOM: LIFE ON THE LEARNING CURVE
Avalanche forecaster Brett Kobernik reflects on a career of innovation—from developing the first splitboards to lessons learned after being caught in a 2016 slide.

MOUNTAIN SKILLS: HIGHER LEARNING

MOUNTAIN ACCOUNT: NEVER SAY NEVER

GEARBOX
A roundup of the latest in technical apparel: wool. And Scarpa supplies an extraterrestrial boost with their Alien RS.

BLOWN OUT

ON LOCATION: RANGE OF RESILIENCE
In British Columbia's remote Slocan Valley, outliers are carving livelihoods and turns in the Selkirk Mountains. Digital Producer Louise Lintilhac reflects from snow cave to skintrack on the persistence of the region's people.

LETTERS
Missing: Baby Boomers and moose protocol.

DEPTH: ATOP RECONNOITER PEAK

LOCAL LEGEND: GREG HILL

LAST COL: ROGERS PASS, B.C.'S CHEOPS MOUNTAIN

BIFF AMERICA
The weight we carry and the turns that bring its release.

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