My friends and I started on 3-pin bindings and cross country skis. We needed a way to get into the mountains, to enjoy the solitude and explore the same places we would hike to in the summer.
It was never just about the skiing. Skiing was a means to an end. As the gear improved and became a little easier to turn, the skiing became more of an objective itself.
I started riding lifts so I could practice turning. Then I bought plastic boots and wider skis, and discovered I just like to ski.
We probably ski about 50% lift served and 50% backcountry. Our backcountry skiing would seem quite tame to a lot of people. Skin up a trail for an hour or two for some low-angle powder run. We don't consider ourselves "risk takers". I've certainly had more close calls at a ski area than in the backcountry.
When I'm done typing this we're going to go pick up our season passes, and hope for an early start to the season. I'll happily ski a WROD until there's enough snow to make the backcountry fun!
Good luck with your project!
Thanks so much JXB, I fell in love with skiing over the past three years and found I'm not a big steep and fast type of person. I enjoy cruising and more windy narrow stuff. Would love to start doing more off trail stuff in the near future, a little harder in the northeast.
Wondering, do you pack the same stuff every time or does weather and/or location make a difference? I'm not asking for a list or anything just some insight.