Avalanche Education Courses At Squaw Valley And Alpine Meadows

Posted By: The Ski Channel on January 7, 2014 8:00 am

Starting this Wednesday, January 8, skiers and snowboards can take advantage of new avalanche education courses at Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows. The one-day and three-day courses teach the basics of snow science, how to access and read the avalanche advisory, how to operate standard avalanche equipment (beacon, probe, and shovel), and, most importantly, how to make good decisions.

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Photo by Jeff Engerbretson / Squaw Valley 

Squawvalley_photobyJeffEngerbretson

Photo by Jeff Engerbretson / Squaw Valley 

The courses kick off this week at Squaw Valley with the three-day AIAIRE Avalanche level 1 Certification course January 8-10 for $389, and the one-day avalanche awareness course on January 12 for $149.

Additional courses will be offered at both Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows in February and March. Full information including additional dates and details is available at www.squaw.com/lessons-rentals/adult-lessons/avalanche-awareness-education.

The one-day and three-day course follow the Avalanche Institute for Avalanche Research and Education (AIARE) curriculum and is taught by AIARE Qualified Instructors.

Avalanche Awareness 1-Day Course

  • Learn the basics: terrain, weather, avalanche activity and mountain snowpack.
  • Avalanche statistics and human factors
  • Avalanche terminology and terrain
  • Snowpack and weather factors
  • Obvious clues
  • Avalanche advisories
  • Travel protocols
  • Companion rescue

AIARE Avalanche Level 1 3-Day Course

  • 24 Hours of classroom and field work to become AIARE (American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education) Level 1 certified.
  • Advanced understanding of avalanche terrain, particularly from the perspective of stability analysis
  • Discuss how the snowpack develops and metamorphoses over time; and discuss the factors that contribute to spatial variability
  • Learn standard observation guidelines and recording formats for factors that influence or indicate snow stability
  • Advanced understanding of avalanche release and triggering mechanisms
  • Introduce a snow stability analysis and forecasting framework
  • Improve companion rescue skills including multiple and deep burials
  • Participants will receive Level 1 certificate upon successful completion of the course
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