Find Your Next Adventure

Or leave the current defaults



Quick Trip Search
Colorado Mountain Club
Welcome,   Log OutMember Login •  Contact Us
Home » Calendar » EventDetails

Trip Details

Date Saturday  1/5/2019
End Date
Group Fort Collins
Event Title Backcountry Ski Tour, Cameron Pass Backcountry Ski Skills Seminar
Start Time 7:30 AM
Status Approved
Leader John Raich
Member Price Free
Available Participants 5
Type Trip
Trip Type Ski
Pace Moderate
Classification Moderate II
Trail Mileage 6
Elevation Gain 2000
Driving Distance


Cameron Pass
Meeting time: 7:30 a.m.
Meeting location: Parking area near Shell station at the junction of highways 14 and 287 about 10 miles NW of downtown Fort Collins.
Please plan to arrive about 5 minutes earlier for car pooling. Suggested ride share contribution for passengers is $10 from the meeting place to the trailhead and back.

For more info Contact

John Raich,


NOTE: Participants of the Backcountry Ski Skills Seminar have priority for this field trip.

This is an initial field trip of the CMC Backcountry Ski Skills Seminar. Effective decision making in avalanche terrain depends on communication and cohesion between team members. CMC ski tour groups tend to come together just before the start of scheduled trips. The Seminar is designed to improve cohesion and communication. Hence you should sign up for the Seminar if you intend to participate in Seminar field trips for the 2018-19 season..

For the 1/5 field trip, we'll rely on planning done at the 12/11 evening seminar. The field trip will likely focus on the Montgomery Pass/Diamond Peaks area:
Maps: Trails Illustrated #112, #200
The backcountry tour will involve a round trip of up to 6 miles with an elevation gain of up to 2,000', with a portion on an established track. Be prepared to break trail for part of the route. Ascent will be moderately paced with periodic stops for snowpack and terrain assessments. You should be able to ski untracked snow in variable conditions, both above and below treeline, in trees of varying density. Terrain steepness will generally be 30 degrees or less, except for short, steeper sections. With an early season snowpack, expect to encounter deadfall, obstacles of various types. Careful and controlled skiing is a must. You should be prepared for an outing of 5-6 hours, trailhead to trailhead. Driving to and from the trailhead adds about another 2.5 hours round trip from the meeting location.

Bring AT, tele, or split board gear with climbing skins. A helmet (skiing or climbing) is recommended. Avalanche gear (beacon, shovel, probe) and knowledge of how to use it, is required. Bring lunch, including a drink. Winter clothing, including wind protection, is essential.

Backcountry AT/Tele ratings for this trip (see Notes below):
Fitness - MODERATE
Skill - BLUE

Please read the notes on backcountry skiing ratings below to determine if this trip is for you. This is a 'register with leader' trip.

NOAA weather forecast:
CAIC avalanche forecast:
Front Range forecast:
before you leave for this ski tour.

By signing up for this trip, participants agree to allow the trip leader to share contact information with other participants. They also agree that responsibility for group safety is shared by all participants.



These informal ratings are provided to allow you to judge your fit to the activity.

* Easy
You can climb and descend a backcountry ski tour with total elevation gain of up to 1,200 feet in a half day without getting really tired. You can climb on a good skin track at a rate of 500 feet vertical elevation gain and 1 mile distance, each hour, not counting short breaks (something like 10 minutes each hour or 5 minutes each half hour), and keep this up for 2-3 hours.
* Moderate
You can climb and descend a backcountry ski tour with total elevation gain of up to 2,400 feet;, with short rest breaks every hour or so, in a day. You can climb on a good ski track at a rate of 750 feet vertical elevation gain and 1 mile distance each hour, not counting breaks and keep this up for 3-4 hours.
* Strenuous
You can climb and descend a backcountry ski tour with a total elevation gain of 3,000 feet or more in a day. You can climb on a variable ski track at a rate of 1,000 feet vertical elevation gain and 1.5 miles horizontal distance in about 1.5 hours, not counting short breaks, and keep this up for half a day. You can break trail in heavy snow for short periods of time at a slower pace.

* Green
You are able to ski proficiently on groomed beginner 'green' runs at downhill areas. You can get down groomed 'blue' runs but 'black' runs are a survival zone. You can make solid stem turns and traverse via kick-turns off-trail on untracked snow slopes. You are able to distinguish easy terrain from more difficult terrain that a novice can't handle. You are still learning to ski untracked snow.
* Blue
You handle the blue; and the easier black runs at ski areas at good speeds. You can make turns in untracked powder on fairly open and moderate angle slopes in the backcountry, but difficult conditions such as heavy wet snow, crusts, poor visibility, dense trees, and steep slopes can all cause problems, though you can cope with them safely at slower speed, although perhaps not elegantly.
* Black
You can manage most black diamond runs at ski areas with confidence. Style is not important but control is. You can make linked turns through powder, heavier snow, in forested terrain, on steep slopes greater than 25 degrees. You can manage complex terrain such as gullies and couloirs. Difficult breakable crust and skiing a fresh track in poor visibility may still be a challenge although you are able to cope.
* Ski mountaineering
You have considerable experience with backcountry travel planning and route finding. You have basic mountaineering training, including climbing steep snow, ice axe use, and, if indicated by the trip leader, basic rope management skills. Other specialized gear such as ski crampons, boot crampons, and ice ax may be required on ski mountaineering tours, especially later during the season.

* No avalanche training or gear required.
* Level 1 avalanche course required: Completion of a level 1 avalanche course and avalanche gear (beacon, shovel, probe) are required.
For an overview of avalanche rescue:


You must be logged in to register for this event.
Login or  Join the CMC