The backcountry is not a ski area.Here's my 0.02 from years of dealing with skiing injuries. The expert skier who hits a tree/rock with his head at fast speeds is very rare. Skiing through trees is relatively slow and most skiers who are doing it recognize crashes far enough out that they are able to at least avoid taking most of the impact with their head. In 6 years of ski patrolling, I never took a wreck out of thick trees or steep moguls. Not that it doesn't happen every year, just that it's pretty rare. Hence, I never drag the bucket on hut trips or BC tours unless I was planning on launching significant drops over 10+ feet, in which case I would bring it (think East Vail).
However, where helmets come in very useful at preventing head injuries is inbounds. Collisions, terrain parks and high speed blue runs are where I've seen many many injuries that could possibly have been lessened or prevented by helmets. That's where I definitely recommend a brain bucket.
I'm not saying that people should avoid helmets because they do provide invaluable protection against head injuries, but I rather doubt that ski helmets prevent many fatalities. Stay safe out there and happy powder hunting....
My point is simply that helmets provide a limited amount of protection in some environments. The dogma that you must wear a helmet at all times is ridiculous - do you have one on right now? No, because you've weighed the pros/cons and decided that while providing protection for your head, it's not worth the discomfort when surfing mountainbuzz.The backcountry is not a ski area.
Avalanches happen and the number one cause of death is blunt force trama.
Second, heads bleed! A head cut from a branch a few miles from the car can be life threatening.
I am shocked that a person who deals with avalanche and medical issues would even hint that not using a helmet is ok.
Joe...I'm sorry but you are throwing extra variables into the discussion that don't need to be there. 2 people have the exact same wreck at the exact same speed and one is wearing a helmet. You can't tell me that the person not wearing a helmet is safer than the one that is.The dogma that you must wear a helmet at all times is ridiculous - do you have one on right now? The title of this post is helmets in the backcountry, not helmets all the time.
All that theory being said, I wear a helmet when I'm skiing inbounds. I bought my mom and fiancee helmets for Christmas. But I personally, don't think the protection is worth the sweating/discomfort/weight when BC skiing. Other people want to ski faster, huck bigger or have a lower risk threshold. That's the beauty of humanity, just do some thinking for yourself and avoid the dogma(shit).