Important points in respect of off piste / back country skiing / boarding

Off-piste (or backcountry) skiing or boarding means 'going out of bounds', i.e. outside the resort boundary (if there is a boundary) or off the marked pistes if within the resort area. If you are going out of bounds or outside marked areas of the resort, we recommend you do so with a fully qualified local guide. If you state that you want off piste cover you are insured for off-piste without a guide provided that you are not going alone or going against advice. Some areas within a resort may be considered out of bounds because they are hazardous. In most parts of North America, going out of bounds contravenes local law and therefore there would not be any cover in place.

It is your responsibility to ensure that on any particular day you are aware of and obey local advice, information and instructions given by the resort authorities and that you obey any signs and information you encounter on the mountain - it is your responsibility to find out. If a section is marked 'closed' there will be a very good reason for it (e.g. high avalanche danger) and ignoring such signs or advice may invalidate your cover. You should be aware that under the terms of cover, needless self-exposure to peril except in an endeavour to save human life may invalidate your cover. It is a condition of cover that you abide by the International Ski federation – Snow Sports Rules as shown here .

International Ski federation – Snow Sports Rules

  1. Respect for others
    A skier or snowboarder must behave in such a way that he does not endanger or prejudice others.
  2. Control of speed and skiing or snowboarding
    A skier or snowboarder must move in control. He must adapt his speed and manner of skiing or snowboarding to his personal ability and to the prevailing conditions of terrain, snow and weather as well as to the density of traffic.
  3. Choice of route
    A skier or snowboarder coming from behind must choose his route in such a way that he does not endanger skiers or snowboarders ahead.
  4. Overtaking
    A skier or snowboarder may overtake another skier or snowboarder above or below and to the right or to the left provided that he leaves enough space for the overtaken skier or snowboarder to make any voluntary or involuntary movement.
  5. Entering, starting and moving upwards
    A skier or snowboarder entering a marked run, starting again after stopping or moving upwards on the slopes must look up and down the slopes that he can do so without endangering himself or others.
  6. Stopping on the piste
    Unless absolutely necessary, a skier or snowboarder must avoid stopping on the piste in narrow places or where visibility is restricted. After a fall in such a place, a skier or snowboarder must move clear of the piste as soon as possible.
  7. Climbing and descending on foot
    A skier or snowboarder either climbing or descending on foot must keep to the side of the piste.
  8. Respect for signs and markings
    A skier or snowboarder must respect all signs and markings.
  9. Assistance
    At accidents, every skier or snowboarder is duty bound to assist.
  10. Identification
    Every skier or snowboarder and witness, whether a responsible party or not, must exchange names and addresses following an accident.

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