Camping in the Snow

From Honora



Avoid avalanche path

Consider morning sun. Can find direction of south-east with compass and ensure view.

Wind, can observe trees and tussock if applicable or the presence of cornices, flagging, etching.

Avoid drifts as this indicates the deposition of snow. Keep a few feet from the back of a drift.




Dig 1- 2 feet pit and stomp it out. A pit prevents wind between fly and tent causing flapping. Use the snow for:


A low wall a few feet from tent. Lee snow will deposit between wall and tent.


If pit not possible, build first wall half height of tent and build 2nd lower wall. Lee snow will be deposited between walls.


Put sharpest end of tent into wind as reduced flapping. If double vestibule, means other end in sheltered possie.


If available, use ice axes, crampons, snow stakes and deadmen to attach guy ropes to. Put stakes in perpendicular to guy ropes. Stomp first, place stake and stomp, it will consolidate. For Deadmen use stuff sacs with loop poking out of snow. Wait, then attach to guy ropes.


Firstrax website talks about attaching a small section of shock cord to tent then attach guy ropes to this to absorb flapping. The use of snow grass to attach guyropes to achieves the same principle.


Firelighting in the snow (below the bushline)

Dig a pit down to the ground with seating benches, to keep fire out of wind. Use forked tree to snap off branches.


Put down platform of dry sticks, place pile of shavings on and construct tepee of split sticks. Light shavings windward so flames fan to rest of pile.