With 6,641 sq km of mountains to explore in Banff National Park, where does an adventurous skier start? Nowadays, most backcountry skiers start with Marcus Baranow’s Confessions of a Ski Bum guides. Baranow has written two books, Icefields Parkway: Lake Louise to Bow Summit and Kicking Horse Pass, as well as two online guides, Citadel to Egypt Lake: Banff Backcountry Skiing and Banff Area Backcountry. The Ontarian moved west in 2000, settled in Banff in 2008, and started exploring immediately. At some point he realized it might be helpful to share what he had found with the ever-growing backcountry community. Some of the tours in his guides are classics, while others are obscure drainages few thought of skiing before. You don’t want to know how much time he’s spent gathering terrain photos, drawing maps or recording his explorations. Just be thankful you can spend your time skiing powder instead of getting lost. Find it all at confessionsofaskibum.com.
by KEVIN HJERTAAS