Ski touring that combines alpine hiking and skiing is one of very popular kinds of sport in the High Tatras.
For beginners, groomed ski pistes are ideal to start with. More experienced ski tourers can find endless possibilities in the High Tatras. Valleys with unforgettable downhill in powder snow, ascents to peaks with breathtaking views. Trips like this run usually outside of marked trails and require the company of a professional mountain guide.
The ski touring season lasts in the High Tatras from 15th December to 15th April if the snow conditions are good and if there is no avalanche danger announced. However, every ski tourer must follow certain rules to stay safe, to ensure safety for others and to protect nature.
Ski touring combines alpine hiking with skiing and can be practiced on several levels in the High Tatras:
SKI FITNESS (beginners): If you like skiing and want to try something new, ski fitness is the ideal way how to begin with ski touring. It is meant for beginners who want to acquaint themselves with ski touring. Groomed pistes where rules for tourists on ski pistes must be followed are very good for ski fitness.
Suggestions for beginners (ski fitness)
SKI TOURING (advanced): It is the ideal winter hiking on skis. If you are a good skier and love off-piste terrain, ski touring is tailored for you! The name suggests that there is nothing extreme about it – neither up the hill, nor down the hill. Ascents are not very difficult and anybody who is in a certain form can master them. The same applies to descents. It is truly beautiful to ski down in untouched powder snow. Ski touring is performed outside of pistes so ski tourers have to respect walking tourists who have the right of way on tourist trails.
Suggestions for advanced ski tourers (ski touring)
ALPINE TOURING (alpine terrain): Alpine tourers cross more difficult terrain where one needs more experience and has to pay more attention to safety. Alpine touring fans surmount mountain summits and use avalanche and climbing equipment. For experienced alpine tourers, the High Tatras offer designated trails in alpine terrain such as saddles: Baranie sedlo, Priečne sedlo and Soliskové sedlo. Alpine tours can be made only together with certified mountain guides or mountain leaders. Choose a mountain guide to hike with you in alpine terrain and don’t forget to take out mountain insurance that covers potential help if the Mountain Rescue Service and must include extreme sports.
Suggestions for advanced alpine tourers
If you want to make a ski tour in alpine terrain, you should be well informed about the avalanche issues and know how to use avalanche equipment (transceiver, probe, shovel, airbag) and check the conditions and warnings on the websites of the Mountain Rescue Service on www.hzs.sk or in Tatra information centres. If you don’t have experience, make an avalanche or ski touring course or use the services of a mountain guide.
There are several checkpoints in the terrain where ski and alpine tourers can check their avalanche transceivers if they are all right or not.
How does it work?
Come close to the checkpoint together with your avalanche transceiver (any brand, not only Pieps) and press the CHECK button. One of three lights comes on to inform about the diagnostics result:
Red: STOP – The transceiver is faulty! (low battery, malfunction etc.)
Orange: The checkpoint cannot evaluate the received signal. There is probably somebody too close to you and your frequencies get mixed (other people must be at least 5 metres away from the checkpoint). / If there is nobody else nearby, your technology is probably obsolete.
Green: Everything is all right, feel free to continue.
The Mountain Rescue Service offers important and updated information about the alpine terrain. Learn about the current situation in the mountains – weather, warnings, avalanche situation and other important details that are necessary before making a trip to the mountains. If you make a ski tour in alpine terrain, you need mountain insurance that covers Mountain Rescue Service help and must include extreme sports. Mountain insurance can be taken out personally in Tatra information offices or online on the websites of individual insurance companies.
If you have an accident in the mountains, don’t forget to call 18 300. You can also use the mobile app of the Mountain Rescue Service, which can help localise you.
www.hzs.sk | www.laviny.sk | Mountain rescue service emergency number: 18 300
MOUNTAIN RESCUE SERVICE mobile app
|INTERSPORT RENT GALFY||Horný Smokovec 51|
Štrbské Pleso (Hotel Crocus)
Tatranská Lomnica (pri Hoteli Lomnica)
Starý Smokovec, Hrebienok Resort II.
| +421 52 442 29 54|
+421 52 446 84 35
+421 52 789 40 45
+421 52 789 79 91
|PREMIERE SKI SCHOOL||Starý Smokovec (Jakubkova Lúka)|
Tatranská Lomnica (lyžiarske stredisko/ski resort)
|+421 905 276 764||www.premiere-group.sk|
|TATRY MOTION||Tatranská Lomnica||+421 911 403 697||www.vt.sk/ski-skola-a-pozicovna/pozicovna|
|PARK SKI SCHOOL||Štrbské Pleso (Hotel Patria)||+421 948 775 505||www.parkskischool.sk|