Please check back for all updated course dates.
Proposed courses will include:
– 2 Weekend Level 1 Courses
– 2 Weekday Level 1 Courses
– 1 Ladies Level 1 Course
– 1 Level 2 Course
Instructors for the Avalanche Courses
Our instructional staff consists of highly qualified individuals from our community. We are pleased to have Ted Steiner, Erich Peitzsch, Cameron Johnson, Jenny Cloutier, Lloyd Morsett, Teal Gayner, and David Steel. Each is an active and experienced trainer and backcountry enthusiasts. In order to meet or exceed the American Avalanche Association (AAA) guidelines of student-to-instructor ratio, each course will have one lead instructor and two co-instructors.
All field study will be held at Whitefish Mountain Resort and in the backcountry immediately surrounding. Due to Coronavirus pandemic, all lectures will be pre-recorded and made available to students online 3 weeks prior to the field study. All courses will meet virtually for a few hours using Microsoft Teams two days prior to the field study. Please visit Whitefish Mountain Resorts COVID-19 safety page for all current updates skiwhitefish.com/covid-19/.
Lift Ticket & Access
The resort is providing day use tickets for students and/or instructors who do not have a season pass. During our field study days, the resort will also grant students and instructors lift access at 8:30 am.
Cancellations received up to 7 days prior to the registered course are eligible to receive a refund less a $50 service fee. Cancellations within 7 days of the registered course will NOT be eligible for a refund. No exceptions.
Cancellation requests are made on the Eventbrite website OR via email directly to The Patrol Fund, Inc.
Due to the everchanging policies regarding Covid-19 please be aware that in the case of course cancelled, full refunds will be administered to all participants.
Equipment List for Level 1 & 2 Courses
Gear Needed For Field Sessions:
• Face coverings (more information to come)
• Whitefish Mountain Resort ski pass. (If you don’t have one please let us know that you need a ticket.)
• Skis or split-board (must be fitted with some sort of brake/retention device)
• Skins for skis or split-boards (no snowshoes)
• Ski Poles (also required for snowboarders)
• Avalanche Transceiver
• Avalanche Shovel (no plastic shovels)
• Avalanche probe (at least 260cm length would be good)
• Ski pants or bibs
• Ski jacket or shell
• Warm gloves and/or mittens. I like to bring at least 2 pairs of hand-warming clothing
• Warm hat
• Neck gaiter or scarf
• Water bottle and/or thermos
• Lunch/snack food
• Warm Layers (extra insulation for the non-moving time in the pits like “puffy” jackets)
• Backpack with a decent method for attaching skis/board
Snow Study Gear
• Inclinometer (compasses with inclinometers are fine)
• Snow saw (required)
• Rutschblock/ECT cord (required). Check Brooks Range or G3 for pre-fabricated ones or check here for making your own
• Magnifying lens/loupe (not required)
• Crystal screen/card
• Folding ruler or marked probe (marked in centimeters)
Gear Needed For Classroom Sessions:
• Camera for reviewing avalanches, pits, or noteworthy terrain observed in the field
• Tablet/phone with wireless connection for accessing remote weather data, avalanche advisories.
• Hand/foot warmers
Suppliers For Snow Study Gear Items:
• Rocky Mountain Outfitter (Kalispell) sells most of the Snow Study Gear and, of course, other stuff.
• Backcountry Access
• SnowPit Technologies
• Snow Metrics
• Rite In The Rain (Make sure it is spiral bound, Recommended: No. 313)
Level 1 Avalanche Course, $220
The Level 1 avalanche course is an interactive program covering the fundamentals of avalanche hazards including awareness and stability assessments. This course consists of approximately 40% online learning time and 60% in-the-field study. Instructors and students travel in and around avalanche terrain. Online learning will be available to students 3 weeks prior to course dates. Instructors will be available for questions during this time. There will be an interactive online session with instructors two days prior to field days to allow for any travel required by students and instructors the day before field session begins.
The course will be following American Avalanche Association guidelines focusing on:
Level 2 Avalanche Course, $350
The Level 2 avalanche course is an interactive program is for aspiring backcountry leaders and backcountry companions desiring greater skills and knowledge. This course consists of approximately 40% online learning time and 60% in-the-field study. Instructors and students travel in and around avalanche terrain. Online learning will be available to students 3 weeks prior to course dates. Instructors will be available for questions during this time. There will be an interactive online session with instructors two days prior to field days to allow for any travel required by students and instructors the day before field session begins.
Participants will learn to: