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Thredbo Backcountry Tours Supported by The North Face

Looking for another adventure on your skis or board? This winter, enjoy a guided Backcountry Adventure outside of the resort boundaries, where you’ll not only learn important backcountry safety skills but also ski and board some incredible and unique terrain.

There is a backcountry adventure for everyone ranging from green, blue and black adventures, each catering to a different level of knowledge and skiing or boarding ability.

Our guides are experienced and have gained extensive backcountry knowledge from exploring the mountains for many years. They are first aid trained, hold avalanche certification and carry appropriate emergency equipment.

Every guest will be provided with a North Face backcountry pack that contains a beacon, probe and shovel. Snowshoes, splitboards and touring ski’s are available for rental so you don’t need to purchase any gear beforehand.

Please note that the Backcountry Tours will run from mid July, pending season snowfall. The tours require a minimum of 2 guests to run and take a maximum of 7 guests per tour.

Please note that we are flexible with group sizes and dates, please submit an inquiry at the bottom of the page with your request and we will come back to you as soon as possible.

Frequently Asked Questions

In its simplest terms it’s skiing and boarding outside resort boundaries. Effectively this means being self-reliant as there’s neither immediate infrastructure or services such as Ski Patrol to assist. You move around under your own power and carry essential gear to support you for the duration. Technology has ensured the supply of specialist lightweight touring gear that has made this sport more accessible to the masses. It’s a big world out there with amazing terrain and stunning scenery to be discovered.

Due to the nature of the sport, safety has always been a big factor and this is why it’s a good idea to hire a guide when first venturing out or seeking new terrain. A good guide will teach you and show you more in one day than you might learn in ten outings on your own so it’s a very worthwhile consideration.

You must be a strong intermediate to advanced skier or boarder, capable of riding all snow conditions in a safe and confident manner. This includes windblown, powder, crud and icy conditions. You must also be able to ski trees, avoid obstacles and manage whiteout and very windy conditions. The terrain we seek out is all un-groomed and mostly categorised blue and black.

While we will do our best to group riders of similar abilities, it’s important you have a realistic self-assessment of your class of rider.

To join our Green Tour / Signature Hill and Blue Tour / Mt Kosciuszko you must be a level 6 or above. To join all other tours you have to be at level 7 or 8. Find out your ability level

A reasonable level of fitness is required, namely endurance and to a lesser extent strength. During a day out you will be expected to cover anywhere from 3 to 15km depending on the tour selected all while climbing slopes of various gradients. Make sure you get good night’s sleep, have a solid breakfast and arrive hydrated.

You need to dress for a full days skiing and carry/wear sufficient clothing to cater for extreme weather conditions. You will need:

  • Goggles
  • Waterproof warm gloves
  • Liner gloves
  • Helmet
  • Hat
  • Layers to adjust throughout the day (thermals, mid layers, puffer layer)
  • Sunglasses
  • 2L water
  • Lunch and snacks
  • Sunscreen
  • Personal medication

You will be issued with a suitable touring pack in which you carry all your gear and additional essential safety equipment.

A number of alpine touring skis / split boards, including climbing skins are available for hire from Thredbo Retail & Rental at Valley Terminal. Our Retail & Rental staff and your guide will show you how the touring specific equipment works. This is especially so for the Introduction to Alpine Touring.

Weather and snow conditions will always dictate which tours will operate and when the conditions are right, nothing compares to a day touring the Australian Alps. Depending on the tour you’ve booked, be assured that your guide will seek out the slopes with the best conditions. Furthest is not always best – at times the best snow is found in the trees nearby.

Above all we must obey the conditions – “we don’t run the backcountry, the backcountry runs us”. Safety is paramount. Alpine touring is undertaken beyond the resort boundaries and as such there is usually no reliance on ski patrol or other immediate support.

Weather and snow conditions are the two biggest safety factors that need to be continually monitored. Your guide is experienced and will make decisions accordingly in order to maximise group safety. Although avalanches are rare and we have a relatively stable snowpack, you will be issued with a shovel, probe and beacon, and receive instruction in basic avalanche safety.

Your guide will assess the situation and render first aid and immediate care of the injured person. A team member with a minor injury may choose to continue the tour. A more serious injury may require evacuation for further medical treatment. Terrain dependent, the team may work together to effect the evacuation, or a 000 call will alert emergency authorities to build an evacuation plan.

Our Tours

Grading Name Duration Skinning Distance* Vertical Climbing* Link
Green Intro @ Signature Hill 3 hours 3kms 250 metres Find out more
Green / Blue Bogong Creek All day 7kms 800 metres Find out more
Blue Mt. Kosciuszko All day 14kms 600 metres Find out more
Blue/Black Mt Etheridge/Etheridge Ridge All day 15kms 1,000 metres Find out more
Black Twin Valleys All day 17kms 1,400 metres Find out more
Black Leatherbarrel Creek All day 15kms 1,500 metres Find out more
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Green Tour | Signature Hill

Duration: 3 Hours
Price: $140
Skill Level: First Timer
Rider Level: Strong Intermediate to Advanced
Location: Karels Area
Highlights: Equipment Familiarisation, Skinning, Backcountry Awareness & Safety

If you’ve never tried Alpine Touring, but keep wondering what it’s all about, this half day tour is for you. Your guide will introduce you to the specialist equipment, safety aspects and skills required to negotiate simple backcountry terrain. This session is also a pre-requisite before joining our other, more demanding full day tours.

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Green/Blue Tour | Bogong Creek

Duration: 7 Hours – All Day
Price: $275
Skill Level: Beginner to Advanced
Rider Level: Advanced
Location: Bogong Creek Area
Highlights: Terrain Variety, Fresh Snow, Hanging Rock, Alpine Touring & Backcountry Skill Development

While the name Bogong may be synonymous with Victoria’s highest peak, we associate it with fresh snow, terrain variety and surprisingly easy access from Australia’s highest lifted point – Karels T-bar. This is the go to backcountry area where your guide will gradually introduce you to more challenging and steeper terrain coupled with fresh tracks. 

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Blue Tour | Mt Kosciuszko

Duration: 7 Hours – All Day
Price: $275
Rider Level: Strong Intermediate
Skill Level: Beginner to Advanced
Location: Mt. Kosciuszko, Seamans Hut
Highlights: Summit & Ride Australia’s Highest Peak

Ride off the top of Australia! At 2228m high, there’s something special about summiting Mt Kosciuszko, Australias highest peak and getting to ride it. Better still – the gentle nature of Mt Kosciuszko’s slopes mean you don’t have to be an expert rider to join this tour. And don’t forget your camera – the Main Range scenery is absolutely stunning. Time permitting, this tour includes a visit to the historic Seamans Hut.

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Blue /Black Tour | Etheridge Range

Duration: 7 Hours – All Day
Price: $275
Rider Level: Expert
Skill Level: Advanced
Location: Etheridge Ridge, Seamans Hut
Highlights: Etheridge Ridge Challenges, Fresh Tracks, Seamans Hut, Backcountry Skill Development

Ready to step it up a notch? Etheridge Ridge sits in the heart of the Main range, adjacent to and in the shadows of Mt Kosciuszko. This is above tree line riding and the ridge collects a lot of windblown snow to create some amazing fresh stashes. The terrain is varied and increasingly challenging, but with the runs here being slightly shorter, the best way is to set a skin track and session the entire ridge with a lunchbreak at Seamans Hut.

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Black Tour | Leatherbarrel Creek

Duration: 7 Hours – All Day
Price: $275
Rider Level: Expert
Skill Level: Expert
Location: South Ramshead
Highlights: True Wilderness, Incredible Views, Challenging Terrain

The perfect day in the backcountry. Long runs, trees, open bowls, steeps. Leatherbarrel Creek has it all and on the right day and it doesn’t get any better. This valley is tucked away down the southern end of the Main Range and its varied aspects give you that fresh snow feeling for longer. The many options on offer will have you coming back for more, again and again.

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Black Tour | Twin Valleys

Duration: 7 Hours – All Day
Price: $275
Rider Level: Expert
Skill Level: Expert
Location: Twin Valleys, Mt Stillwell
Highlights: Amazing Scenery, Fresh Snow, Terrain Variety

If you’ve skied or boarded Thredbo, chances are you’ve looked up at Twin Valleys on the drive in and imagined yourself and a couple of friends riding the, all to inviting, untouched bowls – all to yourself. Well, imagine no more – our Twin Valleys tour will have you cutting fresh lines high above the Alpine Way. This area is vast and stretches all the way back towards Merritts Spur. The opportunities here are almost endless with challenging terrain offerings that’ll cater for all riders.

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The North Face - Shop the Range

For those making their own way – hit the slopes in dependable gear designed to meet the demands of all-day sessions this winter.

Shop the Range

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Equipment Rental

A number of Backcountry touring skis / split boards, including climbing skins are available for hire from Thredbo Rental at Valley Terminal. Thredbo Rental staff and of course your guide will show you how the touring specific equipment works.

Book Now

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