Avalanche course advise - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 10-19-2006   #1
 
Denver, Colorado
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 81
Avalanche course advise

I'm looking for a school/program that is offering a class in the field for avalanche safety. Anybody have any recommendations?

Thx

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Old 10-19-2006   #2
 
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San Juans, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
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Posts: 487
Avi school

Check out http://www.silvertonavalancheschool.com/
I took a level one there 6 or 7 years ago. Probably half of it is in the field. The instructors are very knowledgable and all are professionals in their field in some capacity. I feel it is good choice as the San Juan Mountains are probably one of the sketchier snow packs in the state, some would even say the lower 48. (wind, snow, cold, elevation, sun, etc...) Plus there are over 100 avalanche paths that cross the local highways on a regular basis. Some instructors are out every day locally and some are CDOT employees. Many years classes get to go out with the crews that blast. Plus the local bar is bar none for ski town shadyness and debachery.
scott
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Old 10-19-2006   #3
 
Vail, Colorado
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 334
Give one of these a try. I have taken the BOC course, very good, informative, reasonable price and good instructor (when I took it). As for the other two I have only heard about the San Juan Course and heard it was comprable to the one I took. Good luck. Knowledge is power!!

http://www.skywardmountaineering.com/avalanche.html
http://www.rmoc.com/avalanche_safety...ubsection_ID=f
http://www.boc123.com/snow/avalanche_certification.cfm
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Old 10-19-2006   #4
 
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Glenwood Springs, Colorado
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I did my Level 1 as a hut trip with these guys last year: http://www.aspenalpine.com/avalanche.html

I really liked the idea of doing it this way... There was a write up about our class in the Vail Daily, a three or four part series. I'm sure you could find it if you did a search there. Great instruction, nice hut (P. Estin), fun weekend away, good food...

Laurie
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Old 10-19-2006   #5
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
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The best avy class is the one you take. Refresher/intro classes, like those offered by the Friends of Berthoud Pass guys, are a great start, but a full level one is the real way to go.

Like dgosn, I took my level one at Silverton many years ago, and it was a great time and great experience. What Laurie describes, taking it a hut, also sounds awesome. Of course, no skiing and staring at all the sweet lines at Estin would just about kill me.
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Old 10-19-2006   #6
 
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Eagle County, Colorado
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I did my level 1 through Colorado Mountain College (www.colomtn.edu I think). Very solid instructors, and like all CMC classes, easy on the pocketbook compared to doing it through a commercial school.
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Old 10-19-2006   #7
 
Vail, Colorado
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 334
Whitelightning: Is this the course you are talking about?

OUT-160 Level I Avalanche Seminar - Not Transferable 1.00 CR
This professional seminar is for persons interested in snow and avalanche phenomena, hazard evaluation, backcountry travel procedures, rescue techniques, and/or ski area avalanche forecasting and avalanche hazard mitigation. Students will receive a certificate of completion stating that the course was taught following the guidelines of the American Avalanche Association.

(OUT-270AA OUT-270AV SAO-162 OUT-012 OUT-270AW) 22.5 Clock Hours


I have heard about it from some friends and they were pleased.
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Old 10-19-2006   #8
 
Denver, Colorado
Join Date: Apr 2004
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Thanks for the info! Don't they run a class up on Bethoud as well?
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Old 10-19-2006   #9
 
Fort Collins, Colorado
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 213
I took a class through the Colorado Mountian School. It was a weekend long class (Fri night, Sat and Sun) It was awsome. We spent time in the classroom and in the field. They dont do a class a Berthod (I dont think) but they do offer their course at Winter Park, but it is only a couple of weekends so if you want to take it there you should check out the web site soon.

http://www.totalclimbing.com/page.ph...door/avalanche
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Old 10-19-2006   #10
 
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Eagle County, Colorado
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Steve Z, that's the one. I did mine through the Vail campus. The instructors were Dan Aguliar who I believe did some guiding on Everest, and Mike Bradley, the local mountain rescue guru along with some others. We did a couple of evenings doing lecture, watching videos, discussing snowpack, rescue techniques, etc. We did a full day on Vail pass on a ridge doing simulated rescue scenarios, beacon training, probe lines, dug pits, etc.

They also do a level II course that is an overnight hut trip somewhere, which I'm sure would be very good as well.
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