The Boundless Issue covers the fresh and far-flung locations across the globe, from Utah’s Manti-La Sal National Forest, where the recent Pole Creek Wildfire has cleared the way for touring, to Norway’s Finnmark Alps, where famers take to the hills in the off-season to guide above the Arctic Circle. On the East Coast, we dive deep into New Hampshire’s Presidential Range, exploring the ravines of Mt. Washington and how the region has become a proving ground for ski mountaineers of today. As some explorers push physical boundaries, others break mental ones, like the search and rescuers speaking out about trauma incurred in the mountains. Also included, the next evolution in Dalbello’s cabrio boot design, a lightweight update for Black Diamond’s avalanche airbag and how to best travel—when you have to—on a high avalanche danger day.
THE BOUNDLESS ISSUE
OUT OF THE WOODS
Trauma isn't just physical—a broken bone, a severe laceration. It cuts deeper. In the mountains, where there's a fine line between taking risks and suffering consequences, we're often exposed to the types of scenarios that can cause emotional harm, which can manifest in post-traumatic stress and mental health struggles. But in a mountain culture that prizes toughness and expertise, it can be difficult to break the silence surrounding emotional trauma. Now, however, industry leaders are beginning to speak up about their own experiences facing issues with mental health and are working hard to end the stigma.
THE ROCK PILE
Standing at 6,288 feet, the summit of New Hampshire's Mt. Washington serves as a beacon for stories that predate its first known visit in 1642. But the ravines, gulfs and gullies that glaciers once carved into Mt. Washington and the dozen other peaks that comprise the Presidential Range hold far more stories than their summits do, told through centuries of exploration, trail-building, skiing, racing, avalanche control and accidents. Tuckerman Ravine is—and should be—a bucket-list descent for every committed skier or rider. So should knowing the history of the storied ravine, the mountain on which it lies and the peaks that surround it.
BACKTRACK: THE RUN THAT GOES BUMP IN THE NIGHT
PERSPECTIVE: NOOKS AND CRANNIES
EDITOR'S NOTE: INTO THE WOODS
Testing the forecast, stretching out on the skintrack and agonizing over decisions for a new age.
Just south of Salt Lake City, Utah, near Spanish Fork and at the northern tip of the Manti-La Sal National Forest, the aftermath of a 2018 wildfire clears a path forward for some skiers.
WISDOM: DON'T CALL HIM A HERO
After longtime patroller Michael Ferrara began to feel the emotional toll of decades of rescue work, he decided to make it his mission to help others in the field.
MOUNTAIN SKILLS: RED LIGHT DISTRICT
MOUNTAIN ACCOUNT: SAFE SPOT
Dalbello's touring-oriented Lupo Air 130 and Black Diamond's newest Jetforce Pro avalanche airbag.
ON LOCATION: NEAR RUSSIA, WITH LOVE
Far north in Norway's Finnmark Alps, Adam Howard takes to the sea to discover hidden lines in the forgotten range.
Reflections on the Range of Light, tele talk and podcast celebrations.
DEPTH: LOST IN FLURRIES
CELEBRATING 25 YEARS: 2014-2019
BIFF AMERICA: COPS AND THREESOMES
For two and a half decades, Backcountry's kept a close pulse on skis, boots, bindings, splitboards and more.