Backcountry 101: Introduction to Avalanches | Central Wasatch | December 21 & 22, 2023

Backcountry 101: Introduction to Avalanches | Central Wasatch | December 21 & 22, 2023

Salt Lake
December 21, 2023
December 22, 2023
Regular price
Sale price

Location: Central Wasatch

Date: December 21, 2023

Time: 1800-2000 MST

Date: December 22, 2023

Time: 0800-1600 MST

Course Overview

Skiing and snowboarding are more safe and enjoyable when you understand avalanche hazard and how to move through the mountains safely. If you are tired of following your friends who have more experience than you and want to become a valuable member of the team, this is the class for you. Nobody wants to be that partner that can't make informed decisions or be counted on during a rescue. With mixed learning in the classroom, and on-snow with the pros you will learn how to get out in the backcountry, have fun, and come home ready to do it again.

You will be sent the pre-course learning modules three weeks prior to your course to complete on your own time. This pre-course work will explain avalanche characteristics, snowpack fundamentals, clues to instability, terrain assessment, safe travel protocol, rescue, and decision-making techniques.

On your field day, we will spend the day applying the avalanche forecast, practicing terrain identification and decision-making, and more. We encourage all participants to register for a 4-hour Intro Avalanche Rescue Course or an 8-hour Avalanche Rescue Course in addition to this course to be better prepared.

Who should take this course?

This class is for skiers & snowboarders as an introductory course for those who are new to backcountry skiing and riding. We highly recommend that you have some experience using your touring equipment ie. transitioning your gear into uphill and downhill mode, turning your transceiver on/off into search mode, as well as assembling your probe, and shovel. You can do this in safe areas away from avalanche terrain.

What is required for this course?

This is an introductory level course and therefore can be your first avalanche education course. However, you are required to provide your own skis (or splitboard) with alpine touring bindings and climbing skins. We do not allow snowshoes for this course. You should try to provide your own avalanche rescue equipment (if you need to borrow equipment, we are able to make arrangements). If you need to purchase rescue equipment you can do so here. A portion of your sale benefits the Utah Avalanche Center.

Course Goals

  • Describe a basic process to manage risk for winter backcountry travel.
  • Find and interpret local mountain weather forecasts and avalanche advisory information.
  • Describe the equipment necessary for winter backcountry travel.
  • Differentiate avalanche terrain from terrain where avalanches can not occur.
  • Understand the basic functionality of avalanche rescue equipment.

*To maximize the course experience for you and all students, we recommend that you be fit enough to spend the day hiking uphill with skins on and descending slopes in unpredictable snow conditions.

Cancellation policy

Our cancellation policy can be found here.

If you have any questions, please email