Arizona Snowbowl is surrounded by the Kachina Peaks Wilderness and travel outside the Arizona Snowbowl is at your own risk and discretion. Acceptable departure points are on the Humphrey’s Trail Access from parking lot 1; and the Backcountry Access point from the top of the Agassiz Chairlift, 11,500′ (backcountry ski/snowboard access only). All backcountry travelers are advised to visit the Coconino National Forest website for important information.
The San Francisco Peaks contain 77 avalanche slide paths. Areas beyond the ski area boundary are not patrolled or maintained, meaning that avalanches and other hazards may exist. Access to public lands outside the boundary is provided through marked access points.
Terrain outside of the backcountry access point lies within the Kachina Peaks Wilderness and funnels skiers and snowboarders away from Arizona Snowbowl. Know where you are venturing before you enter the Wilderness, and how to get back to your destination.
Arizona Snowbowl assumes no responsibility for the safety and welfare of skiers going beyond the ski area boundary. If rescue is needed it can be costly and may be slow. Should you need help, rescue in the backcountry is coordinated through the Coconino County Sheriff’s Department Search and Rescue Office. Call 911 for emergencies.
We strongly urge those venturing into the backcountry to know your limits and to educate yourself on avalanche dangers and preparedness. Backcountry terrain is rugged and has not had any sort of preventative avalanche control work performed. This risk, along with the other hazards – large cliffs, obstacles, changing snow conditions, tree wells, etc. – requires respect, knowledge and preparation. Before heading into the backcountry-be prepared & let someone know where you are going and when you should be back.
“Know Before You Go”
Items Needed for Backcountry Travel:
- Avalanche transceiver
- Backcountry shovel
- Avalanche probe
- Matches or lighter
- First aid kit
- Food that is high in energy
- Plenty of water
- Extra pair of gloves
- Extra hat
Backcountry users are encouraged to take an Avalanche course. The Kachina Peaks Avalanche Center provides free avalanche awareness talks throughout the winter https://kachinapeaks.org/classes-and-registration. Further your education with a level 1 Avalanche class and practice using your beacon. Avalanche.org also has more educational opportunities. www.avalanche.org
The backcountry access gate will be equipped with a BCA Beacon Checker. Make sure you have fresh batteries, are transmitting and look for the green circle on the beacon checker as you go past. Stop by Ski Patrol to ask any questions you have about our Backcountry Access Policy, or if you need further information.
You should realize that your actions affect not just yourself, but also every other member of your party and potentially any other winter enthusiast who may be required to help in the case of an accident. If you feel something is above your ability level, it is your responsibility to make the wise judgment and inform your group. Please visit www.kachinapeaks.org, or www.avalanche.org