Aspen Alpine Guides is partnered with The American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education (AIARE) and offers a comprehensive schedule of avalanche courses that follow the curriculum for Decision Making in Avalanche Terrain from AIARE.
AIARE Level I Avalanche Courses
AIARE Level I Avalanche: Backcountry Hut Based
Decision Making in Avalanche Terrain: 3 Nights / 3 Days, Thursday Evening through Sunday Afternoon
Price: $445 per person
- January 5-8, 2017 (10th Mt. Sangree M. Froelicher Hut)
- January 19-22, 2017 (10th Mt. Sangree M. Froelicher Hut)
- February 9-12, 2017 (10th Mt. Sangree M. Froelicher Hut)
- March 2-5, 2017 (10th Mt. Sangree M. Froelicher Hut)
- March 16-19, 2017 (Braun System Markley Hut, limited to 6 spots)
AAG has partnered up with the 10th Mountain Division Hut to offer Level I Avalanche courses in the ideal backcountry learning environment. These three-night, three-day courses enable all participants to experience backcountry conditions within the 10th Mountain Hut system by using the backcountry huts as a base for the course and fieldwork. The course includes the AIARE registration fees, field and course handbooks, and the hut fees for Friday and Saturday nights. Participants in the course are responsible for lodging for Thursday evening, and food for the duration of the course.
The AIARE Level I Certification Course is a 3 day / 24 credit hour introduction to avalanche hazard management. The course will:
- Provide a basic understanding of avalanches.
- Describe a framework for decision making and risk management in avalanche terrain.
- Focus on identifying the right questions, rather than on providing "answers."
- Give lessons and exercises that are practically oriented, useful, and applicable in the field.
Students can expect:
- To develop a good understanding of how to prepare for and carry out a trip.
- To understand basic decision making while in the field such as terrain and route options.
- To learn techniques required to rescue a buried person with beacon, shovel and probe.
AIARE Level I Avalanche: Aspen
Decision Making in Avalanche Terrain: 1 Night / 2 Days with Evenings (Friday night, Saturday and Sunday)
Price: $375 per person
- December 9-11, 2016
- January 27-29, 2017
- February 24-26, 2017
- March 10-12, 2017
In addition to the Hut based course offerings, AAG runs a series of AIARE courses that can be taken while staying in town. The evening Sessions are held in town while the Field Work days are held in nearby areas where route finding and terrain selection can be experienced. Similar in curriculum to the Hut based courses, these "stand alone" courses also emphasize decision making skills for safety and risk management along with safe terrain selection. The AIARE Level 1 course is for active on-mountain and side country skiers and riders who want quick access to high alpine terrain, but who also want to know what they are moving through. The course includes the AIARE registration fees, field and course handbooks. Participants in the course are responsible for their own lodging and meals for the duration of the course.
The course is recommended for skiers and snowboarders with a 6 to 7 Ski School Level (PSIA) ability. Participants should be comfortable on blue runs in any and all conditions and should be exploring black runs in various conditions.
The AIARE Level I Certification Course is a 3 day / 24 credit hour introduction to avalanche hazard management.
Programming will vary, but areas will include:
- Day 1: Government Trail Cooridor
- Day 2: Snowmass beacon park / Powderhorn / Burnt Mt.
- Day 3: Aspen Mt. / Richmond Ridge
Companion Rescue Refresher Course
Non-AIARE 1-day companion rescue refresher course based in Aspen, CO
- December 3rd, 2016
- December 17th, 2016
- January 7th, 2017
- February 11th, 2017
This 1-day refresher course is based off of industry and rescue standards. Students will work with beacons, shovels and probes to demonstrate effective techniques for beacon searching, and basic searching and medical care practices. This is a not an AIARE course and is a refresher and update for skills and techniques to be used in the backcountry.
AIARE Level II Avalanche Courses
AIARE Level II Avalanche: Aspen
Analyzing Snow Stability and Avalanche Hazard: 4 Days with Evenings
Price: $525 per person
- 2017 Dates TBD
The Level II course is designed for backcountry and recreational group leaders who want to advance their avalanche knowledge and decision making skills.
The curriculum will Include:
- 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. SWAG MODULE.
- Advance understanding of avalanche release and triggering mechanisms.
- Introduce a snow stability analysis and forecasting framework.
- Improve companion rescue skills including multiple and deep burials.
The AIARE Level II Course is a 40 hour program.
This course also includes the introductory and prerequisite components for the professional progression: Level III Certification