Ski mountaineers need special equipment in order to climb mountains and stay safe:
- To avoid sliding backwards, it is mandatory to have climbing skins under the skis.
- Ski boots need to be more flexible in order to feel good walking with.
- Bindings are not locked on skis but free to move following the moves of the feet while walking
- Bindings have special chocks that allow to raise the hight of the heel while walking uphill
- When needed, special blades can be added to the skis in order to give even more grip and avoid sliding
- When it gets too steep, ski have to be carried on backpack and ice axes as well as crampons can be used (The actual word "Ski mountaineering" comes from there)
- Ski mountaineering skis are close to regular alpine skis but have a lighter structure and usually have a hole in it in order to hang them or build a stretcher, even though it is less the case nowadays.
- Safety equipment: because of the risks of avalanches, Ski mountaineers always take along an ARVA (avalanche transceiver), a snow showel and a probe. Other equipment such as snow airbags are also getting more and more common within the ski mountaineers community.