You asked about the Beacon Testing unit at Gate 1 into Northway, wanting to know why there was one North but not at the entrance to Southback. Great question. Mammut gave us that as a test unit and of course it needs electricity to run. It has been so reliable and effective that we are planning on getting one for the Southback entrance. I am not sure yet how we will solve the electricity problem (perhaps a solar panel), but we have some crack electricians who I am sure will figure that out. When you walk through the gate the unit beeps, telling you that your beacon is working.
There is also a beacon practice station set up at the Campbell Basin Restaurant. It is on the south side of the building, facing chair 6. The unit is next to the Restaurant, and the instructions are printed on a sign right there. You can practice with one, two or more targets. You need your transceiver and a probe (however there are some probes right there that you can use). Once you have probed the unit (which is really a board) the light goes off at the unit and stops your time. It works well to have a partner watch the unit and tell you when you have hit it. We try to get under two minutes for one target and under five minutes for two targets. Just ask yourself, how long can you hold your breath? How quickly would you hope your skiing partner could find you? If you practice for a while you will get better at it.