Backcountry Skiing in the White Mountains

White Mountains | New Hampshire
Trip Highlights

Top reasons to go backcountry skiing in the White Mountains

  • Trip Highlight

    Shred through acres upon acres of this steep-skiing paradise

  • Trip Highlight

    Expand your backcountry skiing skill set on top-notch terrain and powder

  • Trip Highlight

    Take in the the Whites’ unforgettable views while shredding down the mountains

Since the 1930s, the ski terrain in the Whites has delivered the best conditions for a picture-perfect adventure in the backcountry—quality snowpack, plenty of bluebird days, and many opportunities for any skill level. On top of that, this awe-inspiring mountain boasts diverse and endless terrain perfect for anyone who doesn’t want to ski the same run twice, making the area one of the best skiing destinations in New England. The White Mountains are also home to the highest mountains in the Northeast, with Mt. Washington as their crown jewel, reaching 6,280 feet (over 1900 meters) above sea level. Join your expert guide and explore the most rewarding chutes, glades, runs and ravines New Hampshire has to offer. Reach new heights, learn tons of new techniques, experience the freedom of true backcountry and make the most of your day!

Season

December to April

Nearest city

Portland, ME, is just over 2 hours away

Duration

1 day

Skill level

Beginner to advanced

Itineraries

Choose how you spend your days

Introduction to Backcountry Skiing

Full-day

Escape the crowds and develop backcountry skiing skills with the help of your friendly and professional guide. It’s time to step out of your comfort zone and into the off-piste area! Your guide will teach you all about proper skinning techniques,uphill and downhill travel, backcountry safety and decision making. Enjoy a day of fun, memorable, and safe skiing down the White Mountains slopes while developing new backcountry skills in the process!

A Customized Day of Private Guided Backcountry Skiing

Full-day

The White Mountains provide plenty of opportunities for all skill levels and no two adventures are ever the same! Let your guide tailor the perfect day according to your wishes. Whether you wish to learn new techniques and challenge yourself on some of the impressive slopes and glades, or simply enjoy the beauty of the backcountry, this adventure is ideal for you. Ski, have fun, and make some memories that will last a lifetime!

Advanced Backcountry Skiing Tour

Full-day

Anyone looking for a challenge has come to the right place—with over 780,000 acres of backcountry area and 4000-foot summits, the White Mountains offer many options for advanced skiers. Explore the impressive and dramatic snowy terrain and let your guide take care of the planning. Ski some of the steepest slopes worth adding to your bucket list, like the stunning Tuckerman Ravine, Huntington Ravine or the mysterious Gulf of Slides, and enjoy views that will leave you breathless!

Ski Mountaineering in the White Mountains

Full-day

Test your ski mountaineering limits and scale some of New England’s most fascinating mountains and their advanced terrain! Some of the objectives included are Tuckerman Ravine, a popular glacial cirque with steep and challenging runs, the mysterious Gulf of Slides, the remote and less-crowded Lincoln’s Throat where you’ll ascend a drainage gully and witness some great views and the easily-accessible Monroe Brook. These spots are subject to avalanche danger, but your expert guide will make sure you’re safe on your exciting adventure.

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Things to know

Things to know

Covid measures in the White Mountains

57hours is committed to providing safe outdoor adventure experiences. We require all guides using our platform to have a COVID-19 safety plan and to make the details of that plan accessible to travelers. In most cases, group sizes will be reduced, guides will avoid overcrowded locations, and other safety measures will be met depending on the location and activity.

We also expect clients to respect local regulations and take measures to protect themselves, guides and the communities they’re travelling to. For more information on COVID-19 measures in White Mountains, NH please refer to the White Mountain National Forest and New Hampshire’s Department of Health and Human Services.

Please contact us if you have any questions or require further information. We are happy to provide you with the most up-to-date information!

What’s included?

What you get in this adventure:

    • An experienced, certified ski guide with extensive knowledge of the area
    • A full day of backcountry ski touring or ski mountaineering

What’s not included:

    • Technical backcountry ski touring equipment
    • Transportation
    • Food and snacks
    • Accommodations
    • Trip insurance

How fit do I need to be?

To enjoy this backcountry adventure, you need to be in very good physical shape. You will be on your feet for 5-10 hours a day, depending on the chosen adventure, covering lots of terrain every day. You will need to manage controlled descents in variable conditions. All participants should feel comfortable on challenging blue or black-level resort runs and be able to carry a loaded daypack while skinning up variable degrees of terrain.

For the enjoyment and safety of everyone involved, participants of the Advanced Tour must be approved to participate in advanced backcountry skiing tours either through a previous trip with the guiding service or through recommendations.

What if I’ve never backcountry skied before?

Backcountry skiing isn’t just for pros looking for the ultimate thrill ride, it’s also beginner friendly, meaning anyone with solid blue level resort experience can have fun in the backcountry. If you’ve never backcountry skied before, heading out with a guide is your best bet. They’ll take care of the planning, introduce you to the basics, like skinning uphill, and teach you how to manage the terrain. They also have the experience and avalanche training to keep you safe.

For the Customized Day and Ski Mountaineering adventures, you need to be capable of skiing advanced, black diamond, open slope runs.

For the advanced tour, you need to have previous powder skiing experience. You will be skiing, touring, and summiting on glaciated terrain for 8-10 hours. Your guide will take care of the planning, oversee your technique, and teach you how to better manage the terrain. They also have the experience and avalanche training necessary to keep you safe.

What equipment do I need to bring?

For technical backcountry ski touring gear, you will need to bring:

    • Alpine touring skis, telemark skis or splitboard with skins (can be rented)
    • Touring boots and poles (can be rented)
    • Avalanche safety equipment (can be rented):
      • Digital, 3-antenna avalanche transceiver or beacon
      • Lightweight snow shovel
      • Avalanche probe
      • Harness (for ski mountaineering)
    • Crampons and an ice axe (can be rented)

For personal items, we recommend bringing:

    • Helmet
    • Sunglasses or ski goggles
    • Lightweight gloves (one pair of fleece gloves)
    • Medium-weight gloves (wind- and water-resistant insulated mountain gloves)
    • Heavy-insulated mitten (wind- and water-resistant insulated mittens for protection against wind, snow and cold)
    • Buff or neck gaiter
    • Wool or synthetic warm hat
    • Hard-shell jacket with hood — wind and waterproof shell jacket with hood (Gore-Tex recommended)
    • Light-insulating layer or soft-shell top (a fleece or other insulation layer)
    • Insulated parka
    • Ski pants (Gore-Tex recommended)
    • Down jacket or vest
    • Synthetic or wool base layers, underwear and socks
    • One triple-action locking carabiner or two conventional locking carabiners
    • Repair kit and Leatherman for your equipment (can be shared between several people)
    • Water bottle and 1L of water
    • Thermos with a warm beverage — optional
    • Food you can eat on-the-go
    • First-aid kit
    • Ball hat or sun hat
    • Sunscreen
    • Pack with waist strap large enough to carry all items listed (around a 20-30L backpack)
    • Headlamp
    • Camera — optional

Can I rent equipment?

All mandatory gear can be rented if you don’t have your own. You can rent:

Ski the Whites is in Jackson, NH, and Northeast Mountaineering between Jackson and Glen, NH. Rentals should be picked up the night prior to your outing. If you need to rent gear, let us know and we can help make arrangements.

Group sizes and age requirements

Group sizes and pricing:

    • For the Introduction to Backcountry Skiing adventure, the max client-to-guide ratio is 4:1.
    • For the Customized day of Backcountry Skiing, the max client-to-guide ratio is 4:1.
    • For the Advanced tours and Ski Mountaineering, the max client-to-guide ratio is 2:1
    • Costs per person decrease as the group grows for these adventures, so it’s the perfect opportunity to ski with friends and family.
    • If joining alone, you’ll be placed with peers that share a similar level of experience.

Ski touring in the White Mountains can be arranged for larger groups. Contact us to make arrangements.

Min. age requirements:

    • If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
    • Minors as young as 10 years old may be permitted to join private tours on a case-by-case basis.

If your group has skiers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.

Getting there and meeting location

To get to the White Mountains, NH, most people fly into Portland International Jetport in Maine. From there, you can rent a car or take a shuttle service. The White Mountains are just over 2 hours away.

Once you and your guide agree on the details of your itinerary, you will meet your guide at The Bunkhouse at Northeast Mountaineering on the day of your tour, and from there, you’ll head to your tour. The guide will choose the appropriate terrain dependent on conditions and the ski ability of the group.

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