Backcountry 101 Course

This Backcountry 101 course will kick-start your avalanche education. You'll get the skills to use your backcountry gear and learn the basics of an Avalanche Awareness course. The intention is to set you up for being ready to take a Recreational Level 1 avalanche course. Great for families to do together or those who want to see if backcountry skiing suits them. Previous backcountry skinning and skiing experience is not necessary.

We Will Cover

  • Avalanche awareness

  • Gear and clothing used

  • Using bindings and skins

  • Avalanche rescue briefing and practice

  • Backcountry travel skills for the up

  • Backcountry travel skills for the down


  • Intermediate-advanced downhill skiing or snowboarding skill. You must be able to ski or split-board blue or black diamond resort runs without falling. Previous backcountry skinning experience is not necessary.

  • Age 14 or older.

  • Have personal gear ready for field day. See gear list. Snowboarders must have split-boards and skins, no snowshoes.

  • Fitness for a full day in the mountains, skinning up about 2-3,000 vertical feet.

  • Be prepared to remain outside all day in cold and foul weather.

2019/20 Course Dates

  • December 27th and 29th, 2019

  • January 10th and 12th, 2020


  • Friday 7-9pm, classroom session at Powder Hound Ski Shop in Girdwood.

  • Sunday 9am-5pm, 9am meeting in Girdwood then all day outside in Turnagain Pass.

Cost: $200 per person


  • Professional instruction

  • 5:1 max student to instructor ratio

  • Avalanche Awareness certificate of completion

Does Not Include

  • Lodging, food and drink

  • Transportation to and from the trailhead

  • Personal gear and avalanche rescue gear. See avalanche gear list.

  • Rescue and trip insurance (recommended). See Reservation, Cancelation and Insurance Policy for details.

To Book

  • Go to AGC Avalanche Booking page. Select BC 101 Course with the correct date you want.

  • Contact Nick, the lead instructor with any questions at or (907) 441-0432

  • Powder Hound can help you with your equipment and clothing. Registered students receive 20% OFF all backcountry gear.

This course is in conjunction with Powder Hound Ski Shop in Girdwood, Alaska.