Recreational Level 1 Avalanche Course
Your Foundation for Mountain Winter Travel
A Level 1 Avalanche Course is your foundation for winter backcountry travel. This 24-hour course is geared toward advanced skiers and riders who want to start exploring the snowy mountains. The Level 1 will provide you with an introduction to avalanche hazard assessment, tools to make go/no go decisions, how to travel in avalanche terrain, and a review of avalanche rescue. This course is meant to be taken in conjunction with the Avalanche Rescue Course.
We Will Cover
Avalanche rescue techniques
Avalanche types and formation
Identifying avalanche terrain
Using the avalanche advisory
Decision making techniques
Snow, weather and avalanche observations
Snow instability tests
Selecting a low risk route
Advanced downhill ability. You must be able to ski or splitboard black diamond resort runs without falling.
Ability to use your backcountry gear including your bindings and skins.
Fitness for two consecutive full days in the mountains, skinning up about 2-3,000 vertical feet each day.
Be prepared to remain outside all day in cold and foul weather.
Age 14 or older.
Wilderness First Aid course recommended.
Pre Course Homework
Read Avalanche Essentials by Bruce Tremper.
Complete a pre-course quiz. Issued upon registration.
Watch Rescue at Cherry Bowl.
Review the Backcountry Access rescue videos.
Follow the cnfaic.org Turnagain Pass advisory during the weeks before the course.
Practice with your field gear so you're ready. This is not a backcountry riding course.
December 11-15, 2019
December 18-22, 2019
January 1-5, 2020
Wednesday 6-9pm, classroom session at Alaska Rock Gym.
Thursday 6-9pm, classroom session at Alaska Rock Gym.
Saturday 8am-5pm, morning meeting in Girdwood followed by field session at Turnagain Pass.
Sunday 8am-5pm, morning meeting in Girdwood followed by field session at Turnagain Pass.
Please Note: If the weather forecast predicts poor learning conditions at Turnagain Pass we may shift to Hatcher Pass or the Chugach Front Range.
Cost: $450 per person
24 hours of professional instruction. 8 hours of indoor lecture. 16 hours of field instruction.
5:1 max student to instructor ratio
Backcountry checklist field card
Avalanche rescue field card
Certificate of completion
Does Not Include
Lodging, food and drink.
Transportation to and from the trailhead.
Avalanche Essentials, by Bruce Tremper.
Personal gear and avalanche rescue gear. See Avalanche Course Gear List.
Rescue and trip insurance (recommended). See Reservation, Cancellation and Insurance Policy for details.