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Helmet for backcountry?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I have a Smith helmet, not sure model - seems similar to the current Vantage, and my poor noggin just blows up with heat if I wear it on the uptrack.  Opening the vents makes almost no difference at all.  Is there a helmet out there for us high body heat generating folk?  I guess I really need something with very little thermal retention, but that seems at odds with what most people get a snow sports helmet for...





post #2 of 8

I don't wear a helmet, but i see a lot of people with it strapped to their pack on the way up. 

post #3 of 8

I'm afraid to say, no helmets are particularly cool.  When I cycle in the summer I shun helmets for this reason.  And those are designed to be cool..you're basically wearing a styrofoam thermos unfortunately.  I'd clip it to your pack and be done with it.

post #4 of 8

No helmet.  In the backcountry my skiing is a lot more circumspect and it is also devoid of dangerous out of control hordes.  I wear my safety broad brimmed hat if sunny of my safety beanie if cold.


If I were regularly skiing steep rock lined chutes, I might reconsider and carry it (nor wear) on the up.


I will be investing in a light weight climbing helmet, but that is more for protecting head from falling objects on the way up.

post #5 of 8
there is no reason to wear your helmet on the up.

But I always wear on while on the down.

Camp makes a really light one, that is rated for skiing and climbing, so you could wear it while climbing a couloir where youre worried about rockfall.
post #6 of 8

Yep. The Camp gear is good stuff. Have climbing harness,  ice axe and crampons from their range.

post #7 of 8
Just say no to helmets on the up track unless rock fall is an issue... Or really bad consequences of a long, steep, slide... In which case you're probably 'mountaineering' and will have a different set of goals and choices to make.

Nothing wrong with a helmet for the 'down' though.
Edited by markojp - 2/1/15 at 2:56am
post #8 of 8

I wear a Black Diamond Tracer climbing helmet most of the time on firm snow days; my wife wears a Camp for descents on hard snow and in trees.


I wear the helmet for many reasons; the first and foremost is that it is the coolingest headgear I can wear that gives sun protection--even so, I often wear a sweat band underneath.  I'll wear hats when the snow is deep, the weather bad, and the temps really cold.


I wear the helmet on the way up; I often ski on hard, icy snow; I often use ski crampons; and I use self-arrest grips under challenging conditions also; slides are almost always a risk when I'm skiing on firm snow (going up or down);  I value my brains.


In tree skiing under sketchy conditions helmets provide some protection not only from tree boles but from tree limbs; the Tracer has webbing that prevent tree limbs from going thru the air vents on the sides.  I don't like sun coming in from behind my sunglasses and the climbing helmet is just think enough to prevent that.  Even short bill caps capture heat & moisture from my face and neck and can fog glasses.


So there are many good reasons to wear a helmet (just like alpine skiing, bicycling, etc) and only one reason not to--they look kind of dumb

Here I just skied a few hundred vertical of rough, icy snow, and after starting down a gulley that is usually fun, I found it excessively narrow, with hard frozen ski, boot, and snowshoe tracks, emerging tree tops, and debris, so I packed my skis and kicked steps down to a flat to eat lunch.

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