2011 – 2012 Tahoe Backcountry Vertical Challenege
Last winter via the interwebs I became aware of a backcountry vertical gain contest called Tahoe Vertical. I enquired about competing even though my daily skin tracks were decidedly deseret, not blue lake, and Brendan allowed me to join in on the fun. The competition is put on by what I can only imagine is the best ski shop in Tahoe – AlpenGlow Sports.
With great sponsors like Clifbar, G3 and Scarpa, this is actually a community fundraising event for the always underfunded local avalanche center – Sierra Avalanche Center. I am an Observer for the Utah Avalanche Center. Simply put, these organizations save lives.
It couldn’t be easier to join in on the fun. After skiing every day you just log onto the website and record how much vert you ski that day. Even though my thighs are technically high speed quads, the vert you get from riding the real high speed quads does not count, human powered skiing only. Their database driven website allows you to see who has the most vertical gain overall, the biggest single day, etc. With a little bit of sweat and lot of luck you can win some awesome prizes. Just yesterday my bounty for winning a couple categories in last years competition arrived.
Overall Winner Most Vertical Gain for the Season: Dynafit TLT Mountain Ski Boots
Most Vertical Gain – Single Day: Pieps Tour Shovel
This year there was supposed to be a Wasatch version of the contest, but it unfortunately fell through. And they understandably tightened the rules to be local Tahoe skiers only. Boohoo.