Avalanche and safety prompt cards to go! Remember critical information when you need it with this colorful set of 18 cards printed on both sides. These 4 x 7-inch pocket sized, water resistant cards contain essential avalanche, snow and weather observation, trip planning and rescue information typically contained in more voluminous avalanche safety books. Nationally recognized mountain guides and avalanche experts contributed to this edition. Professional mountain guides using these cards call them “SGCs”!
PR: Brooks-Range SGCs get massive update
Brooks-Range has just published a completely revised and expanded set of its Ski Guide Cards (SGC’s). The Ski Guide Cards are snow avalanche safety prompt cards which are color coded. This new edition of SGC’s are 19 double-sided cards containing key information that every certified mountain guide should know, and backcountry enthusiasts probably know a lot about. Things like how to perform a rescue, whether that is from falling in a crevasse, but being caught in an avalanche. Or, more importantly, what information you should be keeping track of to avoid such calamity.
According to Tom Murphy, Operations Director of the American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education, “Brooks-Range did an excellent job compiling the latest information and consulting with experts to develop a tool that professionals and recreationalists can benefit from using.”
The revised cards are as up to date as one can get with evolving standards. Brooks-Range believes that its updated Ski Guide Cards are the first publication to include the updates for both SWAG and OGRS. The list of people on the advisory board for the SGCs reads like a who's who of outdoor industry leaders, with input from people like Bela Vadasz, director of the AMGA's ski guiding program, Rob Hess, owner of Exum Guides out of Jackson Hole, Dr. Peter Hackett, a pioneer in high altitude medical research, plus key members of the American Avalanche Association, the Canadian Avalanche Association, and AIARE.
A list of the card subjects and their contents reveals an amazing level of depth for such a compact package. All together the card set weighs 2.6 ounces (74 g). Admittedly this a small amount considering the breadth of subjects covered. Realistically, however, it is too much to carry around in a pack. But when you consider that you really only need a cheat sheet for one or two subjects, at 0.14 oz. (3.9 g) per card, these cards might prove worth their weight in gold in an emergency.
Anyone who becomes passionate about adventure ends up doing whatever they can to learn as much as they can about traveling in the backcountry. For ski mountaineers, knowledge is the power behind staying safe while traveling in wild snow. To that end there are several resources for developing your knowledge base, from comprehensive books like Freedom of the Hills, published by the Mountaineers, to specialized outdoor courses in mountaineering, like the AIARE Level 1 Avalanche Course, or the NOLS outdoor program.
As with any subject, it is easy to forget important details with lack of use. Like a muscle that atrophies from lack of use, unfamiliarity with the many protocols or observations professional guides abide by can magnify trouble when it occurs. Brooks-Range's Ski Guide Cards are like a set of Cliff-notes covering a wide range of avalanche safety and mountaineering travel guidelines.
The set of 18 double-sided cards provides key information for a number of subjects, from recognizing and documenting High Altitude Sickness, to determining avalanche hazard through field observations on through how to not only conduct a search for a buried victim, but how to dig him out!
Plus there is a wealth of auxiliary information with regard to accessing international avalanche hotlines and websites to conversion charts for elevation, temperature, even the wind chill factor. For aficionados it is a perfect sort of check list of things that need to be considered, and where knowledge is lacking, it serves as a useful list of things that should be learned.
For those who know the subject, but might feel a bit rusty on a one or two, like professional guides switching between seasonal activities, Brooks-Range's Ski Guide Cards are a great set of reminders about key subjects and the important points associated with them.