The best advice is to stay on top.  That means avoiding high-avalanche danger and possibly using an airbag pack.  But you also need to carry rescue gear to dig someone out if plan A falls through.  Beacons locate, probes pinpoint, and shovels dig.

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Mammut Ultralight Removable Airbag Pack
We have been loath to carry airbag packs since they’ve been so heavy. Enter the Mammut Ultralight with the Removable Airbag 3.0 system. Without the canister the pack is nearly race-weight, and it comes in under 2kg when all topped up. That means you may not have to sacrifice much speed for the additional avalanche safety. The compressed air system is the 3rd iteration from Mammut, ..
From $139.95
Mammut Light Removable Airbag Pack
As the big brother of the Ultralight pack, the 30-liter version allows you to carry technical gear and a few more candy bars. The Light Removable Airbag 3.0 offers the same safety features since it’s also equipped with Mammut’s third iteration RAS. The bigger pack is still light by itself, but it’s built with an aluminum frame to better handle a bigger load. That is important when ..
From $229.95
Mammut Removable Airbag System 3.0
With the third design-iteration from Mammut, the removable airbag system is the most reliable yet. It centers around refillable compressed air cartridges that are capable of filling a 150-liter airbag in less than 3 seconds. A large “T” deployment handle is easy to grab and now can be adjusted to the height of a skier. The handle folds down for stowing in the shoulder strap for tra..
Mammut Refillable Airbag Cartridge
These aluminum cartridges store the life-blood of the Mammut Airbag system: simple compressed air. The cartridges can be purchased with or without a charge, noting there are transport restrictions on a charged unit (no air travel). Either one can be refilled using a compressed air source such as a SCUBA or paintball tank. To recharge a unit, you’ll need a tank, adapter, and a refil..
ARVA Axio Avalanche Beacon
The perfect gift for your ski partner, the ARVA Axio Beacon might give them the best chance of finding you if you’re buried in an avalanche. Other beacons rely on a very short third antenna which is limited by the depth of the housing. This renders the antenna useful only in the final search phase: refining the area to probe. In contrast, the Axio’s third antenna is designed to be ..
Pieps Micro Beacon
The Micro Beacon is the smallest and lightest way to get past gear check at a skimo race. For the 2016/17 season and beyond, the ISMF is requiring three antennas in all avalanche transceivers. This is good news because folks may no longer make a big safety compromise when racing. Although somewhat limited in range, the Pieps Micro beacon is full-featured enough for use in the backc..
ARVA Neo Avalanche Beacon
At Skimo Co, we like to offer our customers a wide selection of skis, boots, bindings, and other gear to match personal preferences. When it comes to avalanche beacons, however, we think it's better to give only a select few options for backcountry use. This is because you're buying a beacon not mainly for yourself, but for your ski partners who might end up relying on you to find ..
ARVA Premium Combo Kit
This ARVA combo kit is a great way to get started in the backcountry. You get all the gear you need at a discounted price: Neo Beacon – An avalanche transceiver with the best range on the market that is simple to use. What more do you need? Light 240 Probe – A lightweight aluminum probe with ample length that is quick to assemble. Done. Ovo Access TS shovel – Big blade, st..
CAMP Crest Shovel
Due to its small 23x20 inch blade size, the Crest Shovel from CAMP would not be ideal in deep burial situations. However, given that the Crest is the lightest ISMF certified shovel on the market, it's perfect for skimo races when you have an army of blades for digging. It also has several options for condensing into or onto a pack so you can keep yourself streamlined during the rac..
Merelli Carbon Shovel
You know you’re serious about skimo racing when you have a carbon fiber shovel in your pack. Merelli offers the lightest ISMF certified shovel in the world. Constructed onsite in the company’s high tech factory in Italy, the Carbon Shovel sets a new standard in lightweight safety. Safety in this case does not refer to the shovel’s ability to dig, which is limited by the blade’s 20x..
ARVA Ultra Shovel
A metal shovel light enough for racing? ARVA says yes, it's possible, with the new Ultra. Weighing just 302 grams (10.7 ounces), this ISMF compliant digger features a carbon fiber shaft that easily snaps into a svelt aluminum blade. When disconnected, the parts are slim enough to stow easily in a race pack. If you're not quite comfortable carrying a kids' toy during a race, the ARV..
Mammut Alugator Light Shovel
A basic-yet-advanced aluminum shovel that won’t weigh you down. The Mammut Alugator Light features an anodized blade and telescope shaft for some serious digging. The automatic zipper-lock system allows for quick assembly and deployment. The blade has stabilization ribs for rigidity yet the back remains flat which helps when cutting a snow profile. There are also strategically plac..
ARVA Snow Plume Shovel
The ARVA Plume is one of the lightest functional avalanche saftey shovels on the market. With a 46cm (18.1inc) carbon fiber shaft and a sizeable 24.5cm x 25cm (9.6in x 9.8in) aluminum scoop, the Plume will actually move some avalanched-hardened snow. But since it weighs only 411 grams (14.5 ounces), you might not feel like you're carrying a true rescue device. Full length car..
CAMP Rocket Shovel
If you're serious about moving snow that might be on top of your ski partner, consider carrying the Rocket. With a telescoping handle that extends to 65cm (25.6 inches) and a sturdy 24cm x 28cm blade (9.4" x 11"), the CAMP shovel can move some serious snow. While heavier than some other shovels, the Rocket makes up for it by being very packable. A clever design features no protrudi..
ARVA Carbon 240 Light Probe
The ARVA Carbon 240 Light is the lightest probe on the market that complies with International Ski Mountaineering Federation regulations, weighing in at a scant 115 grams (4.1 ounces). However, being a full 240 centimeters (7 feet, 10.5 inches) in length, it is also long enough to carry on tours with people you actually care about finding under the snow. Constructed with carb..
$74.95 $64.95
Mammut Carbon Probe 240 Light
A race-weight probe from Mammut with a robust tensioning system. The Carbon 240 Light has stable, lightweight segments that snap together with a telescopic locking mechanism that is easy to use with gloves on. The tip is drop-shaped to help save energy when probing, and the sides are marked with precise scales so you know your target depth. The Mammut Carbon 240 Light probe is ligh..
ARVA Carbon 240 Compact Probe
As light and awesome as the Carbon 240 Light probe is, the one drawback can be its length. The 43cm folded length can make it awkward to fit in shorter skimo race packs. Disliking drawbacks, ARVA decided to make a compact version which has a folded length of just 33cm. This is accomplished by having eight sections instead of six and making the probing point sit flush. The tradeoff ..
CAMP Carbon Fiber Avy Probe
CAMP's lightest, the Carbon Fiber Avalance Probe is great for competitive ski mountaineering or everyday touring. Weighing only 133 grams (4.7 ounces), the six section probe is 240 centimeters (7' 10.5") in length, making it compatible with ISMF racing regulations and deep burials. The probe is connected with strong Dyneema® cord, a tug and cinch of which makes for quickly assembly..
ARVA Light 240 Probe
Long, strong, light, inexpensive. All these good qualities can be found in the ARVA Light 240 Probe, often used as a benchmark in the backcountry safety market. Featuring 7075 alumimum sections and a strong kevlar cord, the Light 240 deploys quickly and locks with a simple tension locking system. And with the ISMF standard 240cm of length, you will have a great shot of finding your..
Mammut Probe 240 Fast Lock
A sturdy aluminum probe with a focus on assembly speed. Mammut recognized that time is of the essence when probing, and the last thing you need is to waste time assembling your probe. The Fast Lock system is easy and secure, matching well with the stable aluminum segments. The tensioning cord is durable and the system can be used with gloves or mittens. The Mammut 240 Fast Lock pro..
Black Diamond AvaLung Element
The Black Diamond AvaLung has been proven to extend lives of buried avalanche victims. The system redirects your exhales away from your mouth so the nearby snow won’t ice up into a suffocating wall. That means more air from the snowpack is available to you in a dire situation. The Element is a removable AvaLung that works with several BD pack lines, including the ultralight Cirque ..
G3 Rutschblock Cord
Multi-use gear is bonus for ultralight enthusiasts and G3 offers one with the Rutschblock cord. The coated steel cable is designed for isolating snow columns but is also great cutting small cornices. No need to carry dynamite and a snowpack tool, just carry the G3 Rutschblock cord. The cord is dotted with stiff metal springs that create slicing friction while you saw like a lumb..
G3 Bonesaw
Designed to cut snow blocks, the G3 Bonesaw might be more at home in the zombie apocalypse. A proper backcountry skier should know exactly what he/she is about to ski on, and what better way to analyze the snowpack than with a saw inscribed with a snow-crystal sizing grid? Offset teeth, a long blade, and contoured handle make the Bonesaw a real favorite amongst guides and studious..
Mammut Ice Axe Spike Protection
Make sure your axe doesn’t blow you safety net by covering the spike with a Mammut protector. Since most axe-carry systems on packs leave the spike pointing right at your airbag, it’s a good idea to cover them up. The Mammut Ice Axe Spike Protection works with most axes to prevent accidental puncture of your airbag. ..
Mammut Cartridge Refill Kit
These kits enable refill of Mammut compressed air cartridges. Consisting of a gasket and cover plate, the Refill Kits are available in 3 or 20 unit quantities. These are the parts that go boom when a canister is triggered. Attach the cartridge to a compressed air source using an adapter and soon you’ll be ready to ski unstable snow (not recommended). ..
From $14.95
Mammut Airbag Cartridge Adapter
Be sure the dive shop in your target destination can fill your airbag pack by bringing this adapter. It connects to any SCUBA tank and refills Mammut air cartridges. You’ll also need a refill kit for each cartridge, as those parts get used up each time the airbag is triggered. The adapter makes a connection between the cylinder and an empty cartridge, and can be reused indefinitely..
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