Best Avalanche Airbag Packs 2022: For Skiing and Snowboarding

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Avalanche airbag pack is a must-have versatile gear in several snow sports, such as split boarding, sledding, skiing, and snowboarding.

This can increase the chance of survival from accidents caused by an avalanche. Therefore, even if it’s not a primary need in snow sports and requires additional expense, many people buy and equip themselves with this to have a greater chance of survival.

If you’re also into skiing and snowboarding, an avalanche airbag pack dramatically helps ensure your safety, especially since you won’t foresee an avalanche.

Here, I will give you ideas about what avalanche airbags you need.

What is Avalanche?

Avalanche is like a landslide but is not composed of soil but massive ice, snow, and rock falling rapidly down a mountainside.

This is one of the unexpected happenings you might face if you’re on a snowy mountain. A mountain coated with snow may look photographic.

Still, when the ice becomes overloaded, it has a high chance of suddenly falling off, damaging properties, and even worse, killing people’s lives.

Since this is a natural disaster, meaning we can’t stop it from happening, what we can only do is make equipment that can save our lives.

This is the reason why safety gear for snow sports was invented. One of these is the avalanche airbag pack, which decreases the risk of being buried in an avalanche.

what is an avalanche

Avalanche Airbag Pack and its Purpose

Avalanche Airbag Pack is a safety gear used in snow activities. It has become vital gear next to the standard avalanche safety equipment like an avalanche beacon, shovel, and probe.

In avalanches, larger objects rise to the surface, and more minor things sink to the bottom. Of course, no one would want to fall to the bottom because it would be impossible to be rescued eventually.

An avalanche airbag pack is a backpack with an airbag system inside. This consists of a large balloon or balloons that can be easily inflated by pulling off a cord.

Using this, the person will appear to be larger, so they will naturally rise to the snow’s surface. 

However, wearing Avalanche Airbag Packs doesn’t mean you’ll have a 100% chance of survival in case of accidents. It is just helpful in dangerous situations due to avalanche slides.

If you have no idea which avalanche airbag back is worth buying this 2022, below are some recommendations. 

Best Avalanche 2022 Airbag for Skiing and Snowboarding

Jetforce Tour 26L Avalanche Airbag Pack

This Avalanche Airbag Pack is made of 210d Nylon and comes in small, medium, and large sizes. It has a volume of 24L to 26L, from small to large. The average weight of S/M sizes is 2.53 kg, while the M/L is 2.63 kg.

It features a Black Diamond JetForce Tour system that utilizes the rapid-discharging, capacitor-based Alpride E1 system.

The supercapacitors can make the turbine-based fan system work. It can deliver a large amount of energy in a short time, usually not exceeding 1 hour, through two AA batteries and a micro USB. 

Moreover, it has one on/off switch and blinking status indicator lights that can be visibly checked outside the pack when wearing it.

Since it is 26 liters, this avalanche airbag pack is spacious so that you can store extra emergency gear, food, and water.

It can be easily accessed through its zipper. It also has a reliable safety pocket which is perfect for containing a shovel blade, shovel handle, and probe.

Despite being spacious, it is comfortable to wear because it is lightweight. 

Pros
  • It is easy to use.
  • It is spacious so you can put in extra batteries and other essentials.
  • It charges in less time.
Cons
  • Its shoulder straps are too wide.
  • The dye may stain your jacket.

Mammut Pro X Removable Airbag 3.0

If you want an airbag that can save your life while not harming nature, this Mammut Pro X Removable Airbag 3.0 is what I can recommend.

It is an environmentally friendly and smart avalanche airbag pack made of recycled and recyclable polyester. 

This is very convenient because, as stated in its name, it has a removable airbag system, and you can inflate the balloon in less than a minute.

Also, it won’t give you a hard time since it is very lightweight and only weighs 5 pounds.

This 22-liter airbag has a main compartment and two exterior pockets, which can be easily accessed through its rear zipper.

This is where you can store other avalanche safety gear, extra layers, food, water, and other essentials in your backcountry skiing and snowboarding.

A separate molded, soft-lined compartment is also perfectly designed for fragile ski goggles. Moreover, it even has a snowboard carrier and hydration system compatibility.

This also comes with a removable hip belt with pockets, shoulder straps with stretch fabric cover, a diagonal ski carrier, an SOS label with emergency instructions, and high-density, 2-layer EVA back padding.

Pros
  • Extremely spacious
  • Lightweight and comfortable
  • It is environmentally friendly
  • It is highly durable
Cons
  • It is too small for a multi-day tour

Backcountry Access Float 22 Avalanche Airbag Pack

The Backcountry, both men and women, can use Access Float 22 Avalanche Airbag Pack. The refillable BCA Float 2.0 compressed air cylinder makes the avalanche airbag system work.

This 22-liter airbag pack that weighs 5 pounds is where you can put all the things you need, such as water, food, extra layers, skins, and other safety equipment like ski walkie-talkie, ski carry straps etc.

It has two exterior pockets where you can put wet skins and a spacious main compartment where you can store the rest of your needs. 

It features a hydration sleeve, integrated BC link radios for smooth communication, shoulder straps with foam and two water-resistant zippers, and a molded back panel.

Additionally, it includes a hip belt with pockets, comfortable to wear as it fits people who have 24-56 inches waist/hips. It also has straps on the front, enabling it to carry a snowboard vertically or diagonally.

Pros
  • Exceptionally lightweight
  • It fits all your essentials for the full day
  • It has hydration compatibility
  • It is user-friendly and highly durable
  • It is inexpensive but does its purpose well
Cons
  • It has only one size so it does not fit all body sizes

Osprey Soelden Pro 32 Avalanche Airbag Pack – Men’s

This avalanche airbag pack is specifically designed for men and includes an alpride E1 electronic system that uses a supercapacitor to make the fan work. 

Osprey Soelden Pro 32 Avalanche Airbag Pack is easy to use and charges faster than any other airbag.

Also, this airbag pack is lightweight; it won’t hurt your back or make you uncomfortable while skiing or snowboarding.

Hence, it is comfortable to carry and travel-friendly, making it an ideal airbag for a full day in the Backcountry.

This 32-liter airbag, weighing 6 pounds, can accommodate everything you need for backcountry skiing and snowboarding.

It has a large J-zip and another large U-zip, so you can easily access the safety pockets and the main compartment. 

Furthermore, it includes a hip belt with pockets, a ski carrier, a ski helmet carrier, and a snowboard carrier, and you can even attach a GPS/radio to its strap.

Pros
  • It is extremely durable.
  • It has a lot of space to store your essentials.
  • It has a separate compartment for wet tools.
  • It is fast charging.
  • It is non-hazardous.
  • It is versatile so you can use it in most snow sports.
Cons
  • It is heavier than other airbag backs.
  • The hip straps are thin.
  • It doesn’t have an external pocket for goggles.

Scott Backcountry Patrol AP 30L Airbag Backpack + E1 Alpride Kit

This airbag is a fully electronic avalanche airbag that is perfect for backcountry skiing and snowboarding. It doesn’t require cartridges, so it makes the full-day tour easy. 

Moreover, charging won’t be time-consuming because the turbo radial fan gives more filling power in less time. It can charge in just 20 minutes using a micro USB and two AA batteries.

Also, you have nothing to worry about in the freezing weather because it won’t affect the batteries.

This avalanche airbag pack provides a lot of room for your tour essentials. It is a 30-liter airbag pack, so you can tell that it can fit all your needs, including extra layers, lunch, water, a first aid kit, safety gear, and many more.

It also has an easily accessible separate compartment where you can put your shovel and other stuff. Despite having a high volume, it is not heavy, so it won’t make you uncomfortable. 

Moreover, it has a hip belt to ensure the airbag stays in place. It is also able to carry a ski diagonally and a snowboard vertically. 

Pros
  • It is durable.
  • It charges quickly.
  • It is roomy enough to store your needs.
  • It is comfortable to wear.
Cons
  • It is a little small for longer tours.

How to Choose an Avalanche Airbag Pack for Yourse;f

avalanche airbag for snowboarders

Acquiring an avalanche airbag pack is not just an additional expense because this will significantly help save your life when you encounter an avalanche.

After going through the five given recommendations, you now need to know what you need to consider to choose which is the best among them.

Weight

You must choose an avalanche airbag pack with a weight you can comfortably carry for a full-day or multi-day tour.

Your backcountry skiing and snowboarding will not be fun if you carry a heavy bag. The ideal weight ranges from 3 to 6 pounds.

Capacity

A full day in the Backcountry requires bringing several things. You will need enough food for the whole day, safety gear in an emergency, extra layers, water to stay hydrated, and many more.

These essentials should fit in your chosen airbag. So, you need to buy a spacious one. The ideal is 15-20L for Lift served backcountry, heli & cat trips, 20-35L for day touring, and 35L for multi-day traveling.

Type of System

Avalanche airbag packs have various systems such as Alpride E1 Airbag System, Scott Alpride Avalanche Airbag System, Black Diamond, the JetForce System, BCA Float System, and Mammut P.A.S. & R.A.S.

Each system has different features and functions so that you can choose depending on your needs and preference. 

These are just some of the main things you need to consider if you want to purchase an avalanche airbag pack.

But, there are still some considerations like its price, durability, ability to carry different skis and snowboards, and others. What’s important is you don’t waste your money by settling for less. 

how to choose avalanche airbag

Conclusion

You engage in different snow sports to enjoy, but an avalanche can ruin the fun. However, you can never tell when this disaster will occur, so you must equip yourself with safety gear.

An avalanche airbag pack is beneficial and functional as it will lessen the chance of being buried when an avalanche suddenly happens in your backcountry skiing and snowboarding.

This may be costly and does not guarantee a 100% chance of survival, but it will at least increase the percentage of your safety.

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