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Off Piste "level" guide

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Flat light is when you can't tell the gradient of the slope. But can actually see the houses on the bottom 1000 metres down.

No/poor visibility is you can't see the skier 10 metres below you.

The 2 light condition affects people differently, often independent of skill levels.

A "Developer" or beyond should be able to ski in flat light. Basically, no need to "see" the snow to ski well. A lot of that comes from experience. But poor visibility is independent of skill level. An "expert" (in skill) may still struggles with vertigo when he can't tell up from down. But a beginner may not be affected by vertigo.
snow report     
 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Ok thanks both. I've seen some confusion in online definitions of flat light / white out.

Zero viz is never that much fun, especially off piste. Generally I wouldn't ski off piste / tour in zero viz conditions on safety grounds alone but we often get cloud developing during the course of a morning which often entails a few hundred vertical meters of zero viz then flat light. I no longer do any hut based touring so can take things on a day to day basis with the skiing I do.

If I had to go out in zero viz I'd head for couloirs then trees but many an accident has turned into a drama in such conditions.
snow conditions     
 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Thanks for all the comments, I have tweaked a few descriptions and added a further level...

http://www.insideoutskiing.com/offpistelevel.html
ski holidays     



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