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The High Life

Outfitter
posted: 04/23/2001

Everything you need to turn your backcountry hut trip into a luxurious getaway.

Ah, the pleasures of hut living -- close quarters, smelly strangers with harmonicas, frozen toilet seats. Backcountry ski trips can be an adventure...in discomfort. But they don't have to be. In addition to the requisite ski and avalanche gear, bring along some items just for your comfort and enjoyment -- something cozy, an interesting gadget, and of course, a flask of your favorite indulgence. And don't forget the earplugs.

1. Lowe Alpine's Attack Summit pack carries your day-skiing essentials and doubles as a compression sack for your sleeping bag. $49; lowealpine.com

2. Mountain Hardwear's new down-filled Galaxy SL sleeping bag has an expandable design and water-resistant shell. $305; mountainhardwear.com

3. Brag to your buddies about the sweet snow you've found, from up to two miles away, with Nike's PSC Communicate WX two-way radios. $89 each; nike.com

4. A must-have, a puffy jacket works as a warm layer on the slopes, as a sweater in the hut, and as a pillow. L.L. Bean Primaloft jacket. $99; llbean.com

5. Put a cozy lid on it. Lowe Alpine's Atka hat. $24; lowealpine.com

6. Hands-free and really, really bright, Petzl's Tikka headlamp weighs seven measly ounces. $35; petzl.com

7. Call your own forecast with Brunton's Sherpa, which reads altitude, barometric pressure, temperature, wind speed, and the time. $170; brunton.com

8. When the Saint Bernards are nowhere in sight, this seven-ounce stainless steel flask from GSI Outdoors carries emergency warmth. $20; gsioutdoors.com

9. Put your down time to good use and fix that pesky torn gaiter with the tiny Go! Repair kit. $12; adventuremedicalkits.com

10. For special moments à deux, impress her by having a pair of unbreakable Lexan champagne flutes on hand. $6 each; gsioutdoors.com

11. Making a hut full of friends is easy if you bring along a full-size JavaPress. $40; gsioutdoors.com

12. A combination slipper and overboot, OR's Modular Mukluks are key for midnight treks out to the loo. $70; orgear.com

13. Haul it all to the hut in comfort with Kelty's Yeti pack. $225; kelty.com

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