Wasatch Tours

Dave Hanscom Backcountry Skiing Wasatch Tours, first published in l976, was intended for a rather limited population of skiers who practiced their sport mostly in the proximity of the Central Wasatch. The most optimistic expectation was that a couple thousand tourers might find the volume useful to their touring activities. By 1993, we estimate, some 40,000-50,000 backcountry visitors had utilized the first edition to plan and to execute their winter--and frequently summer--outings.

To meet the demands of this ``new generation'' of winter recreationists, a major revision was undertaken in 1989. Several criteria guided the revision process: to provide better and more detailed information for beginning tourers, to enlarge the geographical coverage to encompass the entire Wasatch, to increase the quality of maps and aerial photographs, to help winter recreationists become better informed about mountain hazards, and to update the avalanche safety chapter with the latest survival and rescue procedures. The extensive revision process necessitated publication of the guide in three volumes.

Wasatch Tours, Volume 1 - An Introduction to Ski Touring in the Wasatch Mountains. Wasatch Tours Publishing, 1993. With Alexis Kelner.

Wasatch Tours Volume 1 Cover Volume 1 is an introduction to backcountry touring in and near the Wasatch. The volume commences with an overview of Wasatch ski touring areas and where to find information and instruction.

This is followed by comprehensive chapters on equipment and clothing appropriate for different types of ski touring and snowshoeing (Chapter 2), mountain hazards, including those associated with terrain, weather, animals, snowmobiles, helicopters, hypothermia, frostbite, dehydration, and sunburn (Chapter 3), and avalanche avoidance and rescue techniques (Chapter 4).

The next two chapters describe numerous tours especially suited to beginners; these outings are located throughout the Wasatch Mountains, from Mantua to Nephi, and in the western end of the Uinta Mountains. The volume concludes with a discussion of canyon preservation issues and suggestions for community activism.

Wasatch Tours, Volume 2 - Intermediate and Advanced Ski Tours in the Northern Wasatch Mountains. Wasatch Tours Publishing, 1995. With Alexis Kelner.

Wasatch Tours Volume 2 Cover Volume 2 covers intermediate and advanced ski touring opportunities in the northern half of the Wasatch Mountains. It provides the details needed by more advanced skiers to ensure enjoyable and safe outings. The area described in the book extends from the peaks southeast of Brigham City to the ridge separating Little Cottonwood Canyon from its southern neighbors.

This book is divided into six chapters, each of which covers one geographic region. In addition to the three major canyons described in the first edition of Wasatch Tours (Millcreek, Big Cottonwood, and Little Cottonwood), we discuss skiing possibilities in Parleys and City Creek canyons, among the foothills and side canyons of Salt Lake County, areas east of Bountiful, Francis and Thurston peaks in northern Davis County, the Lewis Peak and Mount Ogden areas, and the Ben Lomond/Willard massif at the north end of the range.

In keeping with the philosophy of providing complete coverage of touring areas and detailed descriptions of touring routes, this volume contains more than 150 aerial photographs and 23 shaded schematic illustrations. The text includes evaluations of avalanche incidents and discussions of other dangers that cross country skiers must understand.

Beyond the detailed coverage of ski touring routes and hazard avoidance, the book contains many historical references, as well as some information for backcountry users who are interested in environmental issues.

Wasatch Tours, Volume 3 - Intermediate and Advanced Ski Tours in the Southern Wasatch Mountains. Wasatch Tours Publishing, 1998. With Alexis Kelner.

Wasatch Tours Volume 3 Cover Volume 3 describes intermediate and advanced touring opportunities in the southern half of the Wasatch Mountains. The area described extends from the ridge south of Little Cottonwood Canyon to Mount Nebo. Touring areas east of Alpine, American Fork, Pleasant Grove, Provo, Springville, Payson, and Nephi are included, along with several possibilities on the east side of the range near Wallsburg and Daniels Summit.