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  Avalanche Training                

Avalanch Training with White Pine TouringThe backcountry is a beautiful and alluring place to explore, but it can also be extremely dangerous during the winter months. Having the proper education, equipment and knowledge is crucial to both your enjoyment of the backcountry landscape and your survival. Jans offers a range of American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education (AIARE) avalanche courses through our Guiding Service, White Pine Touring, that will help you develop the skills and knowledge you need to travel safely in the backcountry during the winter months.

Some History:

White Pine Touring’s avalanche education Program was developed by IFMGA certified guide, Freddy Grossniklaus. In 2000, Freddy started working with AIARE to help develop the curriculum for the AIARE Level 1, 2 and 3 courses. These original avalanche courses were taught out of the Lodges at Park City Mountain Resort, and on what is now Lady Morgan bowl at Deer Valley Resort. In 2002, Freddy approached White Pine Touring about managing the program to better address the insurance and logistical concerns that were hampering his efforts. Starting in 2004, Freddy mentored current avalanche education program director, Scott House, and the two worked closely to develop a sustainable avalanche education program. Soon after, White Pine Touring became an official AIARE course provider – a distinction they have held to this day. Since the beginning, White Pine Touring has worked closely with AIARE and its pool of instructors to help improve and promote avalanche education. White Pine Touring is now recognized as one of the top AIARE course providers in North America.

Whether you’re a skier, snowboarder, snowshoer, or snowmobiler, our AIARE avalanche courses are designed to give you the skills and confidence you need to safely enjoy your time in the backcountry. Our AIARE qualified instructors have years of experience in the Wasatch and Uinta mountains, and have travelled the world in search of different snowpacks and climates to broaden their base of knowledge. Whether you’re just starting to entertain the idea of backcountry adventure, or you’re a seasoned veteran looking to assume a leadership role in avalanche education, there is an AIARE course for you. Check out our offerings below for specific information on course itineraries, student learning outcomes and course curriculums.

Enroll in an AIARE 1 Avalanche Course in Park City, UT led by AIARE qualified instructors from our White Pine Touring Avalanche Education Program with multiple course session dates available.

AIARE 1 AVALANCHE COURSE AIARE Logo

An AIARE 1 avalanche course is a must for anyone who travels in the backcountry or plans on leaving ski resort boundaries. This course teaches travel techniques, basic rescue procedures, and information that is standard for anyone adventuring in the backcountry, with or without a guide. Course participants will develop a solid knowledge base on how to prepare for and execute a backcountry trip, a responsible and educated decision making process, and how to rescue a buried person (should a member of your party be caught in an avalanche). Based in the Park City area, this course includes a mix of classroom time and fieldwork that takes place over three days for 24 hours of total instruction time.

As part of a highly successful pilot program with AIARE, White Pine Touring is a pioneer of the AIARE 1 Blended Learning Curriculum which adds an additional eight hours of self-paced online instruction to the original 3-day/24-hour course to deepen students’ understanding of the most recent avalanche terminology and concepts. This online instruction provides students the opportunity to individualize their studies and also frees up face-to-face classroom and fieldwork time to focus on further skill development, allowing for more time working with instructors in the field. Students will develop an enhanced understanding of avalanche terminology, avalanche terrain identification, and snowpack formation. Online quizzes allow students to check their comprehension and make certain they are prepared to gain the most from their face-to-face instruction. Students will also learn how to apply the information provided by avalanche forecast centers to their trip plans, allowing for more trip-planning practice during the course.

Park City Powder Cats & Heli-SkiThanks to our unique partnership with Park City Powder Cats & Heli-Ski and Thousand Peaks Ranch, one full day of AIARE 1 fieldwork is performed in a true, remote backcountry setting. A snowcat transports students up to the staging yurt to allow convenient touring access to a wide range of slopes and snow conditions. We are grateful to Park City Powder Cats & Heli-Ski for their continued help and support ensuring that AIARE 1 students in the Wasatch Mountains receive the best possible avalanche education. For more information on Park City Powder Cats & Heli-Ski and their Thousand Peaks Ranch location, please visit pccats.com.

AIARE 1 Student Learning Outcomes:

  • Plan and prepare for travel in avalanche terrain
  • Recognize avalanche terrain
  • Describe a basic framework for making decisions in avalanche terrain
  • Learn and apply effective companion rescue

COST: $395.00 per person (includes rental equipment as needed)
LOCATION: White Pine Touring, 1790 Bonanza Drive, Park City, UT

White Pine Touring AIARE 1 Avalanche Course includes:

  • 3 Full 8-hour Days/24 hours Course total + 8 hours Online Pre-Course Work
    • Day 1 or Evening 1 and 2- Classroom Work
      • Classroom Based in Park City
    • Day 2 - Field Day
      • Colony, Park City, UT
    • Day 3 - Field Day
      • Park City Powder Cats/Thousand Peaks Ranch, Oakley, UT
  • Access to, and return from staging yurt via Snow-cat included.
  • 6:1 Student to Instructor Ratio (formerly 7:1 ratio)
  • Includes:
    • AIARE Field Book
    • AIARE 1 Student Manual
    • Rental Equipment as Needed (Touring/Splitboard Set-up w/Skins, Boots, and Poles, Snowshoes. Beacon/Shovel/Probe provided on a case-by-case basis (please email shouse@whitepinetouring.com for Beacon/Shovel/Probe needs.)
    • Transportation from White Pine Touring to both Field Days
    • Registration with AIARE
    • All Fees, Insurance, etc.

DATES / TIMES: AIARE 1 AVALANCHE COURSE Sessions are offered on the following dates:

  • Session #1
    • January 6th 9am-5pm
    • January 7th 8am-5pm
    • January 8th 8am-5pm
  • Session #2
    • January 27th 9am-5pm
    • January 28th 8am-5pm
    • January 29th 8am-5pm
  • Session #3
    • February 10th 9am-5pm
    • February 11th 8am-5pm
    • February 12th 8am-5pm
  • Session #4
    • February 23rd 6pm-9pm
    • February 24th 6pm-9pm
    • February 25th 8am-5pm
    • February 26th 8am-5pm
  • Session #5
    • March 10th 9am-5pm
    • March 11th 8am-5pm
    • March 12th 8am-5pm
  • Mt. Bohemia, MI Course #1
    • TBD – February, 2017
  • Mt. Bohemia, MI Course #2
    • TBD – March, 2017

For more information please call White Pine Touring at 435-649-8710 or email shouse@whitepinetouring.com.

AIARE 2 Avalanche Course AIARE Logo

After completing the prerequisite AIARE 1 avalanche course to learn about the avalanche hazard management model, you are eligible to progress to the AIARE 2 avalanche course. This is a four-day program that builds on what was taught in the AIARE 1 course. It offers backcountry leaders the chance to advance their knowledge and improve critical decision-making skills in backcountry terrain. AIARE 2 is the prerequisite and introduction for AIARE 3 certification.

Park City Powder Cats & Heli-SkiUtah Mountain AdventuresThe AIARE 2 course is hosted in conjunction with Utah Mountain Adventures and Park City Powder Cats & Heli-Ski. Our unique partnerships allow us to conduct one full day of fieldwork in the Cottonwood Canyons and two full days of fieldwork at Thousand Peaks Ranch – providing students with true backcountry learning experiences. We are grateful to our partners for helping ensure that AIARE 2 students in the Wasatch Mountains receive the best possible avalanche education. For more information, please visit Utah Mountain Adventures and Park City Powder Cats & Heli-Ski.

COST: $795.00 per Person
LOCATION: White Pine Touring, 1790 Bonanza Drive, Park City, UT

White Pine Touring AIARE 2 Avalanche Course includes:

  • 4 Full 10-hour Days/40 hours Course total
    • Day 1
      • Field and Classroom Work Based in Park City, UT and Colony
    • Day 2
      • Classroom Work in Park City, UT; JANS Conference Room
      • Field Work at Park City Powder Cats/Thousand Peaks Ranch, Oakley, UT
    • Day 3
      • Classroom Work in Salt Lake City, UT; Location TBD
      • Field Work in Big or Little Cottonwood Canyon, UT; Location TBD
    • Day 4
      • Classroom Work in Park City, UT; JANS Conference Room
      • Field Work at Park City Powder Cats/Thousand Peaks Ranch, Oakley, UT
  • 5:1 Student to Instructor Ratio (formerly 6:1 ratio)
  • Includes:
    • AIARE Field Book
    • AIARE 2 Student Manual
    • SWAG (Snow, Weather, Avalanche Guidelines)
    • Avalanche Handbook
    • Rental Equipment as Needed (Touring/Splitboard Set-up w/Skins,Boots, and Poles, Snowshoes. Beacon/Shovel/Probe provided on a case-by-case (please email shouse@whitepinetouring.com for Beacon/Shovel/Probe needs.)
    • Transportation from White Pine Touring to Field Days at Colony, and Park City Powder Cats/Thousand Peaks Ranch.
    • Registration with AIARE
    • All Fees, Insurance, etc.

DATES/TIMES:

  • AIARE 2 Avalanche Course #1
    • January 12th 8am-6pm
    • January 13th 8am-6pm
    • January 14th 8am-6pm
    • January 15th 8am-6pm

For more information please call White Pine Touring at 435-649-8710 or email shouse@whitepinetouring.com.

AIARE 3 Avalanche Course AIARE Logo

DATES: AIARE 3 AVALANCHE COURSE Sessions are offered on the following dates:

  • January 20 - January 26, 2017; Mazama, WA
  • January 30 - February 5, 2017; Stanley, ID
  • February 19 - February 25, 2017; Silverton, CO
  • March 6 - March 12, 2017; Lamoille, NV

COST: $1650.00 per Person

The AIARE 3 course is an advanced certification course for experienced and professional avalanche practitioners, professional guides, patrollers and advanced recreational backcountry travelers. The seven-day AIARE 3 course provides participants with an industry-based framework to make decisions in avalanche terrain and to expertly manage the hazards common to avalanche control operations and winter guiding scenarios. Participants are required to form opinions, take on leadership roles, and utilize fellow team members’ skills to assist in the process of forecasting avalanche hazards, snow stability, and appropriate terrain choices. All participants will be evaluated based on their ability to meet the rigorous AIARE 3 standard.

The AIARE 3 course builds on the concepts introduced in the prerequisite AIARE 2 course, including the standardized techniques, and snow and weather observations of the Snow, Weather, and Avalanche Guidelines of the American Avalanche Association (2009). The AIARE 3 takes the “trained observer and technician” and begins the process of making the information relevant to the complexities, variability, and influences of terrain.

For details and to register for AIARE 3 Avalanche course, please contact AIARE Program Director, Ben Pritchet at benp@avtraining.org or visit avtraining.org/aiare-level-3.

AIARE 3 Student Learning Outcomes

  • Practice using an avalanche hazard analysis and risk forecasting process.
  • Form opinions about snow stability, avalanche hazard, and operational decisions.
    Each day begins with a forecast, spends time making decisions in the field, and ends with a hazard analysis and review of risk treatment strategies employed. Hazard evaluation and risk treatment decisions are carefully briefed, coached, and debriefed.
  • Improve participants’ observation and recording skills.
  • Improve the participant’s terrain analysis skills
  • Improve decision making in the field.
  • Improve understanding of the creation and metamorphism of the mountain snowpack.
  • Encourage active participation.
  • Advance participant’s companion rescue skills.