Babes in the Backcountry offer a weekend of adventure, tele teasers, hut trip |

Babes in the Backcountry offer a weekend of adventure, tele teasers, hut trip

summit daily news
Summit County, CO Colorado

SUMMIT COUNTY ” A hut full of babes in the backcountry: it’s every Summit County mountain man’s dream. But this weekend, it will be the ladies fulfilling their fantasies, with four days of women-specific instruction on everything from telemark turns to a two-day hut trip.

Leslie Ross, director of the Summit County-based Babes in the Backcountry, calls her vanguard offerings “a pupu platter.” In the spirit of culinary offerings, tonight’s Babes Night Out, held at Mountain Outfitters in Breckenridge, will offer light snacks and wine from The Cellar in Breckenridge. Local Babes and Mountain Outfitters staff will be on hand to discuss women’s specific equipment.

The food only gets better at the hut trip, which is the weekend’s culminating event, coming at the end of two days of tele teaser clinics and Saturday’s Intro to the Backcountry course. (Women can do all four activities or only one; the backcountry course or equivalent is a prerequisite for the hut trip.) The Cellar will cater the food at Francie’s Cabin, serving up organic meals.

“Often you head up and you’re eating Ramen,” Ross said. “This time it’s high-end.”

Ross is referring to the food and the level of instruction, not the prices. At this time of year it can be difficult to find a spot in a hut, let alone a hut reserved for an entire group. But for about $125 per day, potential Babes can get their fill of the backcountry over the four-day period. All winter disciplines, including snowshoeing and cross-country skiing, are invited to attend the backcountry course and the hut trip, which as of Wednesday had six spots left.

The only prerequisite for the two Tele Teasers and the Intro to the Backcountry course is two X chromosomes. Babes alumnus and Boulder resident Sarah Barclay felt power in the all-female aspect on her previous multi-day outings with Babes.

“When you do a clinic with Leslie (Ross), you’re really pushing yourself,” she said. “The fact that you’re with a group of women allows you to jump in faster.”

And Barclay’s outdoor resume shows these courses are serious. When asked about her experience with Babes, she said her trip to Silverton last winter was “one of the top three experiences of the year.” A heli-ski trip to British Columbia and mountain biking Moab’s White Rim trail in one day rounded out her best-of list.

But it isn’t all extreme. In fact, that’s exactly why many women migrate to Babes to learn about the outdoors. Yoga instructor Ally “Friday” Morrison said yoga is part of many Babes events (including this weekend’s) to make women more aware of their bodies.

“We teach alignment yoga, so we talk about injury prevention and improving your form,” Morrison said.

Ross added that by starting the day with yoga, it allows participants “an opportunity to tune in rather than tune out.

“The tools through yoga get you centered and balanced,” she said. “We become aware of how we’re making decisions in the backcountry. It’s not so much if you know snow crystals. It’s if you’re aware of all the different signals: If you’re hydrated and fed, and if your group is making smart decisions.”

– Tele Teasers: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. today and Saturday at Copper Mountain

– Babes Night Out: 7-9 p.m. on today at Mountain Outfitters in Breckenridge. Please R.S.V.P. to (970) 453-4060.

– Intro to the Backcountry: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday at Gold Run Nordic Center. Topics include avalanche awareness, equipment selection, safe travel techniques and rescue skills.

– Francie’s Cabin Hut Trip: Sunday and Monday

– Option No. 1: Four-day Backcountry Adventure Weekend, $400 includes: Tele Clinic, Babes Night Out, Intro to the Backcountry, Hut Trip

– Option No. 2: Three-day Backcountry Adventure Weekend, $325 includes: Option No. 1 with either the Tele Teaser or Intro to the Backcountry.

– Option No. 3: Two-day Hut Trip, Prerequisite: Intro to the Backcountry Class or equivalent, $250.

– Option No. 4: Two-Day Skills Clinics, $175. Tele Teaser and Intro to the Backcountry

– Option No. 5 One-Day Clinic. $100. Tele Teaser or Intro to the Backcountry Clinic

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