January 22, 2024
Tips From the Ski Shop: What to Pack for a Backcountry Hut Ski Trip

Tips From the Ski Shop: What to Pack for a Backcountry Hut Ski Trip

One of the best parts of winter is combining your love of skiing with a love of escaping the crowds and heading into the backcountry for a hut trip. In B.C., we’re spoiled with amazing backcountry hut options—from heli-accessed lodges to rustic ski-in huts. If you’re new to lodge life, this packing list from our ski shop will help you make the most of your next hut trip. 

What to pack for a ski-in hut trip

For the sake of this list, we’re assuming you’ll be bringing everything in on your back to a remote hut on your own. Note: many huts have kitchen equipment like a stove and dishes. 

  • Ski touring skis, skins, poles, boots and bindings

It sounds obvious, but to ski into a hut and also enjoy any touring you’ll need to bring the right ski gear. Alpine touring gear is essential—meaning skins to climb, touring bindings that free your heel to walk, and ski boots with walk mode. 

Don’t think you can do the approach in resort ski boots, or you’ll end up with painful blisters. Alpine touring ski boots have a walk mode and provide the flexibility required to walk uphill in your skis then glide downhill with the flip of a switch. Check out the 2024 Atomic Hawx Prime XTD or Dalbello Lupo AX 120

Shop backcountry ski gear in Kelowna

  • Avalanche safety gear

Never venture into the backcountry without avalanche safety gear and the knowledge of how to use it. Take an AST1 course if you haven’t already, and invest in a beacon, shovel, and probe. For the full kit, check out the Backcountry Access T4 Rescue Package

  • Helmet

  • At least two pairs of gloves 

  • Headlamp

  • Extra batteries

For your transceiver, headlamp, or any other battery-operated piece of gear you’re bringing. 

  • Sleeping bag and pillow

  • First aid kit

  • Base and mid-layers

  • Ski jacket and ski pants

  • Goggles and sunglasses

  • Hand warmers

  • Extra puffy jacket

You won’t regret it. We love the Arc’teryx Cerium Hoody for its 850 down-fill warmth and packability. 

  • Warm and comfy hut clothing

  • Extra socks, always (we love Smartwool)

  • Toothpaste + toothbrush

  • Sunscreen

  • Toilet paper

  • Lighter

  • Water bottle

  • Light backpacking meals 

  • Snacks, snacks, and more snacks!

Seriously, fill your pockets with snacks

  • Pack

A 40-50 liter pack should be enough to handle a short trip since huts usually provide the kitchen equipment. Think about something like the Dakine Poacher 40L or Backcountry Access Stash Pack 40.

  • Hut booties

The for-real star of the trip, you can’t go to a hut without your cozy hut booties! Our favourite are the Line Apres. We love them so much our staff all received them as a gift one season!

  • Satellite communication device

When venturing into the backcountry where there is no cell service, if possible, bring a satellite communication device like a Garmin InReach in case of emergency. Some new iPhones also have SOS satellite capability. 

The fine print

Here are some keys to a fun and—more importantly—safe backcountry hut experience in the winter:

Know your route and the hazards

If skiing into a hut with a group on your own (no guide), make sure you know the way there and any hazards that may exist on the way in, like avalanche terrain. Load the route in a map app that will give you offline access, like Gaia, and make sure you understand the abilities of everyone in your party.

Leave your plan with someone back home

A must-do for any outdoor adventure off the beaten path. Leave your itinerary (location, dates in and out) with someone back home so they know when to expect you and have all the necessary information should a search be initiated.  

Quit dreaming, start doing. Our sports stores in Kelowna have everything you need to find your new sport. See what’s in store, then get out and enjoy the Fresh Air!

Share Post: