First off, wearing an airbag system does NOT guarantee that you will survive an avalanche burial or a slide amidst avalanche debris. That being said, avalanche airbag backpacks are a solid tool that might just save your life in a shitty situation. So why have you not got one? Chances are that the high cost of airbag systems have prevented you from diving in and making a buy. But we are here to tell you NOW IS THE TIME!
More info on the pack from Backcountry.com
Because of its minimalist design, the Float 22 Airbag Backpack feels light on your back, and this pack carries just enough for an afternoon sidecountry mission, helicopter or sled-accessed powder laps, or a quick dawn patrol. And like all of BCA’s Float backpacks, this pack offers the protection of a trigger-activated airbag that helps you stay on top of sliding debris should you find yourself suddenly caught in an avalanche. At just five and a half pounds, the Float 22 pack barely weighs in much heavier than some backpacking bags, and it offers a compressed-air system that can drastically increase your chances of surviving an avalanche when you’re on skis or a snowboard. Stash your shovel, probe, lunch, and a spare layer in the main compartment, and shred your favorite powder stash with extra peace of mind.
- Easy-to-operate airbag system uses a compressed air cylinder to inflate a large synthetic airbag behind your head and shoulders in order to increase your overall buoyancy and decrease your likelihood of full burial if you’re caught in an avalanche
- Highly-durable, single-chamber airbag inflates via a 2,700 psi compressed air tank operated by a trigger that can be placed on either the left or right backpack shoulder strap
- Venturi inflation system is TUV and CE certified
- External shovel and probe pocket give you a place to store your avalanche survival tools for quick access
- Diagonal ski carry frees your hands on steep slopes so you can lean into the slope and dig with your ice tools
- Helmet carry keeps your brain bucket secure so you can take it off for the heli or the tram ride
- BCA recommends that you deploy your airbag at least once per year. Once you have discharged the compressed air cylinder, you need to bring it or send it back to BCA, BCA Canada, or to an authorized BCA Float cylinder refill station
- Follow this link to enter your area and see a full list of cylinder refill locations near you: backcountryaccess.com/about/map/
- Editor’s Note: wearing this airbag system does NOT guarantee that you will survive an avalanche burial or a slide amidst avalanche debris; get educated, get the right tools, travel with partners, and be smart out there