Safety first

Products you should pack

March 2020 Feature Steve Janes

Although there are only so many things you can carry on a snowmobile outing, there are a few things you should take every time out, even if your desire is to never use them—avalanche gear.

Snowmobilers always need to be prepared for the “worst case scenarios” even though they are hoping for a fun and exciting day on the mountain. But if by chance the snow conditions become treacherous and slopes start to give way to forces of nature, snowmobilers must be prepared to survive the unexpected … and help others survive.

So here are a few things the editors of SnoWest Magazine recommend to have with you at all times when you’re riding in the mountains.

BCA Float 15

The Backcountry Access Float 15 Turbo Avalanche Airbag is designed to create buoyancy that will help you float to the surface in case of an avalanche. The 150-liter airbag not only decreases your burial depth but also protects your head and neck from trauma in an avalanche.

With authorized cylinder refill locations around the world, it is easy to maintain a full charge. Although the Float 2.0 avalanche airbag system does not guarantee survival in an avalanche incident, it gives you your best chance.

All BCA Float packs include integration for BC Link Radios, a hydration sleeve, dual zippered shoulder straps and molded back panel.

Price: $499.95

Ortovox Freerider 22Avabag

The Freerider 22 Avabag avalanche airbag pack provides the highest level of protection combined with an extremely lightweight airbag system. The broad hip belt and body-hugging silhouette ensure a secure fit against the back for the most technical riding.

The inner pack features 22 liters of fully-utilizable volume around the Avabag unit. Outside, the backpack features a dedicated avalanche equipment compartment for the safe storage and quick deployment of shovel and probe. It’s also available in a short back length (20S).

The Avabag features activation training without cartridge and a handle design optimized for activation. The handle can be gripped with any type of glove and is suitable for both left- and right-handed users. It has a refillable, compressed air canister (sold separately for $190). It is also available at any Western Power Sports dealer.

Price: $720 

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