Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Brands

Membership

Small-Time Spotlight: BCA Slope Meter

This tool fits in your pocket, and can save your life.

Lock Icon

Unlock this article and more benefits with 25% off.

Already have an Outside Account? Sign in

Outside+ Logo

25% Off Outside+.
$4.99/month $3.75/month*

Get the one subscription to fuel all your adventures.


  • Map your next adventure with our premium GPS apps: Gaia GPS Premium and Trailforks Pro.
  • Read unlimited digital content from 15+ brands, including Outside Magazine, Triathlete, Ski, Trail Runner, and VeloNews.
  • Watch 600+ hours of endurance challenges, cycling and skiing action, and travel documentaries.
  • Learn from the pros with expert-led online courses.
Join Outside+


*Outside memberships are billed annually. You may cancel your membership at anytime, but no refunds will be issued for payments already made. Upon cancellation, you will have access to your membership through the end of your paid year. More Details


The fourth season is finally upon us, and so are the complications of adventuring in the snow. If you’re heading into the mountains—and, more specifically, potential avalanche terrain—this tiny tool can be a literal life-saver. The Slope Meter is smaller than a pack of gum, but using it to identify hazardous slopes (usually those between 30 and 45 degrees) from afar will help keep you out of danger. I also find it extremely useful for practicing my “eye”: If I’m already on a (safe) slope, I’ll guess what its angle is. I’ll then use the meter to check the actual reading, which will let me know how close I was. Over time, I’ve become a lot more accurate in my assessments. 

If you’re planning on heading into avy terrain often, check out our upcoming January/February issue for an avalanche safety cheat-sheet. Consider taking an AIARE 1 course as well.

$25; Buy now

How to Pack for Backcountry Skiing

Get to know the winter safety gear you need in your pack.

Keywords: