Deep-Snow Dreams in January
Good timing is everything. This definitely applies to the Vaude ski touring camp.
There was a long wait before the magnificent white stuff arrived. This much snow has not been seen in the Allgäuer Alpen for a long time. It was not possible to embark on some of the tours that had been planned due to the high risk of avalanches. The level of risk was set at 4 (high) for over 2,000 metres and at 3 (significant) below this altitude. Bärgunttal and Schwarzwassertal were completely closed for safety reasons. There are actually a number of excellent tour routes through both of these valleys.
This unique experience soon comes to an end on a forest path just above the village of Baad. The skins are taken off from this point. The route initially continues along this path, then through the forest and subsequently over open terrain towards Ochsenhofer Köpfe. The finishing point is on a knoll beneath the ridge. It is not possible to include a summit today as safety has to come first. However, the enjoyment factor not been diminished in any way. After a good 500 metre ascent, the next descent through perfect powder snow finally beckons.
Other components are on the programme at the Vaude Skitourencamp that runs from Friday to Sunday in addition to guided ski tours for beginners and advanced ski tourers. Experts from the Bergwelt Oberstaufen ski and mountaineering school, led by Managing Director Wolfi Schmid, offer training courses on avalanche search techniques and skiing techniques on open terrain. The participants (this year the camp was fully booked with around 80 touring fans) can select which component of the camp they want to take part in according to what interests them the most.
Ski touring is key component of the Vaude’s business philosophy. The mountain sports equipment supplier is based in Tettnang (Lake Constance area). In 2015, Vaude was recognised as ‘Germany’s most sustainable brand’ as the company always ensures that it fulfils environmentally friendly and socially-conscious manufacturing requirements. Ski tours can certainly be considered to be a sustainable type of winter sport due to the reliance on muscle power instead of energy-consuming ski lifts. The event first took place in 2010 and many participants come back again each year to take part. You need to keep your eyes peeled for information if you are hoping to participate next year. The camps usually get booked up very quickly.