Here in Mid-Michigan we have a group that likes to do Epic Ski Days on singletrack trails. These are the same trails we normally mtbike in the summer.
We've been breaking trail and skiing such singletrack with a distance range of 20-40 miles.
We're not doing many linked turns but a lot of technical descending and scramble-ups.
We carry 10-15lb packs and fannypacks. About a gallon of water for a day.
Our gear of choice tends to be Rossi Evos or other 55mm midlength nowaxers with NNN-BC Rossi X5 boots. If the terrain is a bit mellower I'll often opt for a full-length tour-ski.
Basically, we're enjoying taking kick'n'glide skiing to what seems to us to be the next level.
The next level after that seems to maybe be Overnighters.
Actually, the "next level" might also be a 50-mile Day. We haven't done that yet -- with trail-breaking in technical terrain. (As it is, 40 miles is easily "dark to dark.")
But to overnight it's starting to get tricky weight-wise for packs. I find that my range and fun gets shortened a lot once I go over 15 lbs. But I'll try to not be a wimp. I could go 25 lbs if it'll be half that weight at the finish. Carrying 2 gallons of water seems like a real pain but so does pumping/filtering.
See, we want to do self-supported. That might be not possible or convenient really and still have fun -- I'm willing to "break a rule" and get water from a campground or whatever. But we're game to give fully self-supported a try. Actually, campground water isn't breaking any rule, if we could be sure of finding such a thing. If our route went close to a house, say, that's another option for water. Anyway...
I'm wondering about sleds. The Arrowhead 135 gang uses sleds -- but then they're not skiing singletrack. They're skating a snowmobile trail. Sheesh.
Can a sled work for singletrack? Sure, even a light sled adds its own 5-10 lbs, say. But pulling instead of carrying might be groovy. Maybe we could even skip ALL body carried weight -- just slide the sled up between your legs to grab a water bottle, etc.
Well, that's what we're up to. Fun stuff!