Ski Touring for Snow Leopards

A new record set during Dynafit’s 2020 Snow Leopard Day: ski touring enthusiasts raise over $22,000 for snow leopard conservation!

In just two weekends– between February 29 and March 8, 2020– a record-breaking 2,095,339 meters of vertical were accumulated at Dynafit’s International Snow Leopard Day!

A beautiful day to save snow leopards! Photo by Philipp Freund

For those who are unfamiliar with ski touring… Vert (short for vertical) refers to the elevation a skier gains when climbing up a mountain. In ski touring, skiers typically don’t use lifts, but instead climb up the mountain they intend to ski down, using so-called skins attached to the underside of their skis. Dynafit is a brand that specializes in ski touring equipment, so their event is mainly aimed at such athletes.

This year 1,416 athletes across 11 countries sped up ski hills to raise money and awareness for the endangered snow leopard. We are overjoyed to report that the enthusiastic athletes racked up half a million more vertical meters than last year!

“At the top of the mountain, we are all snow leopards” -Hunter S. Thompson. Image by Dynafit

A Snow Leopard Trust partner since 2008, the ski-touring brand Dynafit has hosted this innovative fundraising event for eleven years. For every meter of vert climbed by participants, Dynafit donates one Euro cent to the Snow Leopard Trust. This year’s skiers raised a total of 20,953 Euro (ca. $22,000) for snow leopard conservation! These proceeds will fund community-based conservation programs in Mongolia, India, Pakistan, China, and Kyrgyzstan.

On average, each skier covered approximately 1,480 meters of vert. The crown for the most vert per participant was taken by 33-year-old Stephan Hugenschmidt in Switzerland, who completed the unbelievable amount of 7,070 meters vert. This is the second year in a row Stephan has won this achievement! We have come to the conclusion that he must be part snow leopard.

In bright spirits and bright t-shirts for the special occasion. Photo by Philipp Freund

“On Snow Leopard Day, we can use our passion for ski touring to help serve a good cause. With the Snow Leopard Trust, we have to that end had a respected and engaged partner at our side for many years. Together, we can make a sustainable contribution to protect snow leopards,” remarked Alexander Nehls, Dynafit International Marketing Director.

From all of us at the Snow Leopard Trust, a huge thank you to the entire Dynafit team for their fantastic work on behalf of snow leopards, and to all 1,416 athletes who broke a sweat for wildlife conservation!

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