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How To Survive an Avalanche

Each year in the Alps between 90 and 110 people are killed by avalanches. Most of these accidents occur in France, Switzerland, Italy and Austria. Suffocation is the number one cause of death. Trauma, or injuries suffered in the avalanche, is the second leading cause of death. (source: SLF)

I love to go off-piste, being out there all alone, mostly by myself. But over the years I have become more careful, no longer take unnecessary risks. From December 30th till January 5th I will be back in Davos, enjoying the great powder in the Swiss mountains always making sure to check the weather and snow conditions before going on my tours and at the same time taking along my avalanche safety kit as well as my BCA slope meter.

No matter how adventurous you are, safety comes first. Just check out the story by Travis Rice. He was darn lucky, but not all trips like this have a happy ending…. So please, make sure to take the necessary precautions before heading out to the backcountry.

Buy and always wear an avalanche beacon, a small radio that will transmit your location to rescue crews. Never leave without it.

What to do when you see an avalanche

If you ever see an avalanche, make sure to follow these five steps:

  1. Never try to outrun it. Move to the side and if you can, grab something sturdy.
  2. Try to stay on top it. Some people say, you need to swim, but actually you need to fight light hell to stay on top, if you don’t have one of these airbags in your backpack.
  3. Keep one arm above your head as the avalanche tosses you around.
  4. Make sure to cover your mouth and nose with one hand to get a little space of air. As soon as you stop moving, quickly work to open a space in front of your face. Not only will this pocket give you room to breathe, it will give you space to spit. Note where gravity carries your spit, then dig in the opposite direction. This can save your life.
  5. BREATHE calmly. The natural instinct for anyone buried by an avalanche is to get pretty nervous, but if you can keep your head, you can stay alive. In most cases, victims have a 15-minute window in which they can carve out areas to breathe under the snow.

When chasing another adrenaline rush off-piste, always check the local weather and avalanche reports to know what to expect.

So, stay safe, everyone and enjoy this magical powder season.

xoxo

Holiday Season in Seefeld & Davos

Tis the season. Winter magic, hot punch, lots of powder action and simply taking it easy. It is my favorite season. Hence, it is also a bit more quiet around here. I just love to spend these magical times with my beloved ones, enjoying the holiday season in Seefeld & Davos.

Seefeld

Tyrol is just a short drive from Munich and one of my favorite winter sports destinations. I am not a huge après-ski fan and always try to avoid the crowds. Hence, I know exactly which routes to take in order to have some peaceful moments and high-quality alone time, appreciating nature and the great outdoors.

Davos

Well, it is no secret that I have lost my heart in Davos. For the first time, I will spend New Year’s in Grison and I am looking forward to trying out new things. Maybe I will go night sledding at the Rinerhorn on New Year’s Eve, try air boarding at Pischa or will go on a romantic horse-sleigh ride.

So, apologies that it is going to be a bit more quiet around here till the end of December. But I will definitely keep you posted afterwards, sharing my highlights and new training goals.

Till then, enjoy the holiday season with your loved ones and don’t get too stressed. Just relax and live a litte.

xoxo

photo credits: Munich Mountain Rebel

The Sertig waterfall is an insider’s tip for ice climbing & snowshoeing in Graubünden

This hot spot is nothing for the faint-hearted: the Sertig waterfall in the Sertig Valley in Davos. The ideal place for ice climbing and snowshoeing in Graubünden.

Ice Climbing

Climb a frozen waterfall with ice axe and crampons and explore your own limits: Ice climbing attracts more and more adventurous winter sports enthusiasts. If you want to try this extreme sport yourself, you will find ideal conditions at the waterfall in the Sertigtal valley all winter long.

Carabiners rattle, hooks clink, ice splinters trickle. With one hand you hit an ice axe into the wall and ram the crampon into the ice. A little break. Take a deep breath and carry on. Step by step you climb the cascades of the frozen waterfall, which shimmers in the light in different shades of blue. The last piece of freedom. That’s how an ice climbing adventure in the Sertig valley could feel like. Even if you want to put crampons under your shoes right now: Prepare yourself well first – and take your first steps in the ice together with a mountain guide.

Snowshoeing

For those of you who are not fit enough to climb the waterfall – just like me – explore this magical spot on a snowshoeing tour. You can simply start at the Bergführer Restaurant, enjoying the Sertig Valley, walking your way up to the waterfall.

Beware, the last bit to the Sertig waterfall is very steep. It is nothing for the faint-hearted and you need to be fit! Milos and our guide Beat went straight to the top, touching the ice while I did a little detour through deep powder. It was breathtakingly beautiful and simply magical.

However, this tour to the Sertig waterfall is not for beginners! If you are new to snowshoeing, simply stick to the easy valley tour and don’t go up all the way to the waterfall. For health and fitness benefits, snowshoeing is great for you. It provides a cardio workout while also building strength, agility, balance and endurance. The best part is, you get to do it all in the beautiful outdoors!

Mountain Guide

I can recommend the Bergführer Davos Klosters as well as the Schweizer Schneesportschule Davos. Whether you wanna do a snowshoeing tour, go skiing or try something adventurous, these folks put your safety first and can make almost anything possible. I especially liked their individually tailored tours that suit your personal interest and fitness level. Special thanks to our guide Beat, who ROCKED!

xoxo

photo credits: Munich Mountain Rebel, Davos Klosters (Marcel Giger)