Saturday, December 25, 2010

Ski Touring Without a Map

Christmas Day Doug and I always go for a ski tour. The location varies, but the fact never does. We love each other, we love the mountains, we love ski touring, so spending the day out in the mountains, on skis, on Christmas Day always seems perfect.

My habit is to carry a "pocket map" on my mountain travels. A pocket map is simply a section of either the NTS 1:50,000 series or BC Basemap (TRIM) of the area we will be traveling in printed out onto a standard 8 by 11 sheet of paper. I stick this map into a zip-lock bag and shove it in my pocket. The map is so handy, that I can whip it out and look at it even while I'm skiing. Great for keeping oriented and for smart route-finding.

Lately, however, we've been skiing in some semi-secret locations - I can't divulge them here - and we never know exactly where we'll be until we get there, so I never have printed out exactly the right section of map. Today, my map didn't go quite far enough to the north or the west, so planning our exact trip was difficult. We did, in fact, spend the day skiing the area at the very edge of my map, so were not strictly in no mans land. But, I sure did miss having the full extent of the area we potentially could cover on my pocket map.

Although I can't say for sure - who can predict a future that never happened - but we may have traveled farther afield had we had in our possession a map that covered a larger area. 

 If we had more map, perhaps we could have skied to the summit of this named peak

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