Ski Mountaineering Pass

Sharpen your backcountry skills with our expert, AMGA-trained guides this season as you prepare for an iconic ski mountaineering mission to cap it all off. We'll build your skills, guide you up, and ride with you from the summit of an iconic peak in the Cascades or Sierra Nevada!
Ski Mountaineering Pass
Ski Mountaineering Pass
Ski Mountaineering Pass

Gear up for ski or split mountaineering adventure with a Big Mountain Pass!  Choose Mount Shasta, Mount Baker, or the Eastern Sierra.  We'll get you set to climb and ski these classic ski mountaineering descents.  Build the skills you need close by in Lake Tahoe, then head to your objective of choice to summit and ski with our expert, AMGA trained guides.  

The Ski Mountaineering Pass provides a progression to build the skills you need to summit and ride big peaks anywhere in the world, and ends with a ski descent of an iconic peak.   

    Mount Shasta Pass

    At 14,179' and with a base broader than Mount Rainier, Shasta is the largest stratovolcano in the continental United States.  The Mount Shasta Pass begins with Ski Mountaineering Skills, and progresses into a 3 Day Climb and Ski of Mount Shasta.  You'll come away from the program with a great understanding of techniques and tactics for big mountain climbing and skiing and with the right conditions, a ski descent of a huge volcano!

    Shasta Pass Includes:

    • Rope Skills for Skiers and Riders
    • Ski Mountaineering Skills
    • Shasta Summit and Ski 3 Day 

    Individual Price: $1550 Mount Shasta Pass: $1350!

    Mount Baker Pass

    Mount Baker, aka Koma Kulshan, is the most heavily glaciated peak in the Cascade range after Mount Rainier.  In fact, it has more ice on it than all the other cascade volcanoes combined!  The Mount Baker Pass is designed to provide all the knowledge and skills you'll need to tackle this massive, ice covered peak and similar peaks on your own.  You'll come away from the program with a great understanding of big mountain climbing and skiing and with the right conditions, a ski descent from 10,781', the summit of Mt Baker!

    Baker Pass Includes:

    • Rope Skills for Skiers and Riders
    • Ski Mountaineering Skills
    • Crevasse Rescue 
    • Baker Summit and Ski 3 Day

      Individual Price: $1775 Mount Baker Pass: $1550!

      Eastern Sierra Pass

      The Eastern Sierra is a ski mountaineer's dream.  From huge faces to steep couloirs, this range hosts a lifetime of ski or splitboard descents.  We'll take 3 days to pick off objectives like the Dana Couloir, Powerhouse Chutes, Ellery Bowl, Mount Wood, Mount Lewis and others.  This is an opportunity to tick some of the classic lines in the Range of Light!

      Eastern Sierra Pass Includes:

      • Ski Mountaineering Skills
      • Rope Skills for Skiers and Riders
      • Tahoe Tour
      • Eastern Sierra Ski Mountaineering 3 Days

        Individual Price: $1775 Eastern Sierra Pass: $1550!

          Ski Mountaineering Pass
          Ski Mountaineering Pass
          Ski Mountaineering Pass
          • Load image into Gallery viewer, Ski Mountaineering Pass
          • Load image into Gallery viewer, Ski Mountaineering Pass

          Dates

          Available Dates

          Mt Shasta Pass
          Mt Baker Pass
          Eastern Sierra Pass

          Prices

          See Sidebar for current pricing

          Itinerary

          Itineraries will vary based on the type of pass you choose. 

          Please refer to the itineraries in the individual programs included in your pass.

          Equipment

          Ski Mountaineering Gear Guide

          Gear Guide / Packing List


           

          Backcountry Touring Gear

          • Alpine Touring Skis or Splitboard - Light to Midweight Setup with “Tech Bindings”
          • Alpine Touring Boots or Splitboard Compatible Boots; Scarpa F1
          • Ski Poles - Lightweight, Adjustable Poles with Baskets; BD Expedition 3 Poles
          • Climbing Skins - Mohair Mix is Best; Black Diamond GlideLite Mohair Mix,
          • Ski Crampons - Specific to your Skis/Board; 
          • Ski Strap - Voile Ski Strap or Similar


           

          Avalanche Gear

          • Avalanche Beacon - Digital Avalanche Transceiver; Black Diamond Guide Recon BT
          • Avalanche Shovel - Collapsible, Aluminum Shovel; Backcountry Access BT2 Shovel
          • Avalanche Probe - Quickdraw Style Probe; Backcountry Access Stealth 300


           

          Technical Gear

          • Climbing/Ski Helmet - Dual Rated Helmet; Petzl Sirocco or Black Diamond Vision
          • Headlamp - LED headlamp with fresh batteries; Petzl Actik Core
          • Climbing Harness -  Light Alpine Harness; Petzl Altitude, Mammut Zephyr Altitude
          • Two Locking Carabiners - Petzl Attache, etc
          • Triple Action Locking Carabiner - Edelrid HMS Strike Triple FG Locking Carabiner
          • Double Length Sling - Sewn Runner; Black Diamond 10mm Dynex Runner
          • Belay Device - Tube Style Belay Device; BD ATC Guide, Petzl Reverso
          • Crampons, Steel - Steel Crampons Compatible with Your Boots; Petzl Vasak

          OR Crampons, Aluminum - Aluminum Crampons, Compatible with Your Boots

          Please ask your guide which is appropriate for your objective

          • Lightweight Ice Axe - An ultralight Axe for Steep Terrain; Petzl Ride, BD Raven Ultra


           

          Head and Neck Layers

          • Sun Hat - A Baseball Hat; Blackbird Mountain Guides Logo Hat
          • Sunglasses - Dark Lens Glasses with Side Coverage; Julbo Shield
          • Goggles - Ski Goggles with a Storm Lens; Julbo Aerospace Reactive
          • Warm Hat - Lightweight Warm Hat that Fits Under Your Helmet; 
          • Neck Gaiter - Light to Midweight Neck Gaiters; Buff or your favorite Face Masks 

          ***These Are Required as Covid-19 Face Coverings

           



           

          Upper Body and Hand Layers

          • Long Sleeve Base Layer - Lightweight, Synthetic/Wool; Patagonia SunHoody
          • 2 Insulating Top Layers - Light to Midweight Insulation Layers; Patagonia R1 & NanoAir
          • Puffy - Midweight Down or Synthetic with Hood; Patagonia Fitzroy or similar
          • Hardshell Jacket, Hooded - Waterproof, Light, Gore-Tex, NOT insulated; Arc’Teryx Alpha FL
          • Light Gloves - Light to Mid Weight for Warm Temps; Flylow John Henry Gloves, BD Tour
          • Midweight Gloves - Mid to Heavy Weight for Cold Conditions; BD Legend
          • Sports Bra - Wool/Synthetic


           

          Lower Body and Foot Layers

          • Socks - Midweight Wool/Synthetic; Darn Tough Via Ferrata
          • Underwear - Wool/Synthetic
          • Long Underwear - Wool/Synthetic “Long Johns”;  Patagonia Capilene Air
          • Softshell Ski Pants - Breathable, Weather Resistant Pants; OR Trailbreaker II
          • Vented Hardshell Ski Pants - (Conditions dependent) Waterproof Pants for Extreme Weather

          Camping & Backpacking Gear

          • Sleeping Bag - Down or Synthetic Rated to 0F-20F; Feathered Friends Egret UL 20
          • Sleeping Pad - Insulated Inflatable Air Mattress; Therm-a-Rest NeoAir X-Therm, X-Lite
          • Compression Stuff Sack -  To Pack Sleeping Bag; Ultralight Compression Stuffsack 10L
          • Backpack - Lightweight, Simple 50 Liter Pack; Patagonia Alpinist 50, BD Speed 50 - MUST FIT ALL OF YOUR GEAR AND FOOD


           

          Food and Water

          • Dinner - Your Favorite Freeze Dried or “Just-Add-Hot-Water” Meal for Each Night in the Field.
          • Breakfast - Your Favorite Freeze Dried or “Just-Add-Hot-Water” Meal for Each Morning in the Field
          • Hot Drinks - For After Dinner and During Breakfast; Instant Coffee, Decaffeinated Tea, Hot Cocoa, Tang, Whatever You Prefer
          • Half Liter Nalgene Bottle - A Hard Sided Water Bottled that Can Act as your Mug For Hot Drinks and WAter Bottle Dutring the Climb; Nalgene 16oz Wide Mouth Bottle
          • Soft Water Bottle 1.5L - Flexible Water Bladder; Hydrapak Flux 1.5L

          ***Please bring at least one hard sided water bottle.

          • Water Treatment or Filtration - Katadyn BeFree Filter Connects to Hydrapak Flux Bottles 
          • Bowl - Reuse your Freeze Dried Dinner Bag as Your Bowl, or Bring Another;
          • Spoon - 9” Long Handled Spoon (For Eating Food in a Bag); GSI Essential Spoon Long
          • Snacks - Snacks and Lunch food  for each day of the trip


           

          Other Essentials

          • Sun Screen (SPF 30 minimum)
          • Lip Balm (with SPF)
          • Hand Sanitizer
          • Toilet Paper


           

          Optional

          • First Aid/blister Kit
          • Chemical Hand Warmers
          • Hydration System - Flexible Water Bladder with Hose; Hydrapak, Camelback, Platypus


           

          Group Gear

          Blackbird Mountain Guides will supply all of the group gear for the trip, including:

          • Slingfin Tents (Designed and Headquartered in Berkeley, CA)
          • Stoves
          • Fuel for Stoves
          • Ropes
          • Snow Pickets (if required)
          • Rock Protection (if required)
          • Guide’s First Aid Kits
          • Wag Bags (Solid Human Waste Disposal Bags)

           

          Know Before You Go

          Location

          North Lake Tahoe, CA

          Mount Shasta, CA

          Eastern Sierra, CA

          Mount Baker, WA

          Elevation

          6,000-14,200'

          Technical Difficulty ⚫⚫⚫⚪⚪

          The skills we build during these programs range in difficulty.  The general skills offered in “Ski Mountaineering Skills” are easily accessible, while the more complex rope skills and rescue systems for Crevasse Rescue are more involved and take more practice to master.

          Physical Difficulty ⚫⚫⚫⚫⚪

          Ski and Split mountaineering are physically demanding.  You will need to be in excellent physical condition to attempt either Mount Shasta or Mount Baker.

          Trip Length

          Varies by program.

          Regular price
          $1,350.00
          Sale price
          $1,350.00
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