In this NE Heli Skiing blog post we’ll take a closer look at the Snowpulse Avalanche Airbag Backpack System and outline exactly what they do…and how they can save your life.
At Northern Escape Heli Skiing, safety has always been our number one priority. While heli skiing in British Columbia Canada, one of the most essential pieces of safety equipment we provide to all of our heli ski guests is the Snowpulse Avalanche Airbag Backpack.
Deploying & Repacking the Snowpulse Avalanche Airbag
The Snowpulse Avalanche Airbag Backpack system is an ingenious, lightweight device that could save your life should you ever get caught in an avalanche. It is designed to be a one-size-fits-all and includes an adjustable height and length belt system so it can be fitted to virtually everyone.
You can deploy the airbag by pulling down hard on the colored Trigger handle. The airbag balloon can inflate in less than 3 seconds and is constructed of extremely tear-proof silicone coated nylon. These avalanche airbags feature the same technology you’ll find in automotive side airbags.
The avalanche airbag is specifically designed to:
- Help prevent you from being buried in an avalanche
- And help protect your head from trauma
The airbag backpacks we use are also designed to provide a large carrying capacity. It will allow you to carry additional items you may need like extra layers or gloves, water, snow shovel, probe, and the PULSE Barryvox Avalanche Transceiver, which is something we also provide to our heli skiers.
Once deployed, the Snowpulse Avalanche Airbag Backpack can also be repacked relatively easily so it can be utilized and deployed multiple times, as needed. Our Northern Escape Heli Skiing guides truly believe that this is one of the most reliable avalanche airbag deployment systems. We recommend that all heli skiers attend a heli skiing safety course to ensure that they know how to use all the safety equipment properly.
Other Self Rescue Essentials
When heli skiing, the absolute basics necessary for a self-rescue are a Probe, a Snow Shovel, and a beacon or Transceiver.
Avalanche Probe – These long collapsible poles serve two purposes; to locate someone that is buried beneath the snow and to create air holes so the trapped person can breath.
Snow Shovel – Modern snow shovels are collapsible, compact, and lightweight.
Beacon/Transceivers – We use the PULSE Barryvox Avalanche Transceiver system. Transceivers provide the best hope of being found should you be buried in an avalanche. Every member of your heli skiing group will carry a transceiver, which will be set to “Transmit” while skiing. Should an avalanche trap someone, everyone else can easily switch their Transceiver to “Receive” to improve the chances of finding the trapped individual(s).
About Northern Escape Heli Skiing
Since 2004 Northern Escape Heli Skiing has operated small group heli skiing in Northern BC’s Skeena Mountains, near Terrace, BC. Our boutique heli experience, new Mountain Lodge, snowcat skiing backup and big mountain, deep powder skiing attracts riders from around the world. Our lodges are easily accessed from Vancouver via Terrace Airport. For more information, see our Guide to Heli Skiing in BC, contact us or visit our booking page.