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eternalX

REI Avalanche class

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This 3 day classroom, 1 day field class any good? It's $140 and I'm thinking it'd be easier to undertstand this stuff in person, then through the freedom of the hills book.

 

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My advice (it worked for me) is to sign up for the Level 1 Avalanche Awareness course, offered by National Ski Patrol. Should be easy to find one this time of year. Look 'em up on the net for more info.

 

This was a 2-day course, with the second day in the field. Covered hazards, nomenclature, weather, snowpack, terrain, route selection, self-rescue, transceiver searches and probing, and concluded with a "real" multiple-victim search/rescue on skis. I thought it was well worth the $40 i spent.

 

...sobo

---------

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I just picked up Bruce Tremper's new book, Staying Alive in Avalanche Terrain. It's the best I've seen and would be a good accompaniment to any class.

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I have gone through level 3 avalanche seminars in the US I would recommend saving you money and going throught the Canadain Level 1 it is alot more money time and Information then any of the US classes. If I had the time myself I would take level 1 Canadian. BTW if you intented to take a Avy class in the states and have basic info on Avy, I will contest Level 1 US and go On to Level 2. Level 1 US is pretty much just telling you what avalanche terrain is. Level two is Pits and recording. The two do overlap. Overall you can read the same info that they teach in avy books. I would highly recomend the "Avalanche Hand Book" By David McClung. I hope this info helps

Dave

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If Gary Brill is teaching it, it's worth it. he has been doing it for years. Don't know what he is going to do for a field trip with no snow. He has awsome slides.

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Level 1 US is pretty much just telling you what avalanche terrain is. Level two is Pits and recording. The two do overlap. Overall you can read the same info

that they teach in avy books. I would highly recomend the "Avalanche Hand Book" By David McClung.

 

The Level 1 class I took from the NSP did indeed include a field demonstration of the shovel test pit (which we all know) AND the fabled Rutschblock Test. After we failed the snow from the Rotschblock test, we then did the layer analysis and recording, using all the pretty instruments.

 

I don't know which Level 1 class you took, skisports, but mine was good and well worth the $40. I think my climbing club *may* have subsidized a part of the tuition, tho, so it could have cost more for non-members.

 

We also got the McClung book as part of the tuition. That alone is worth $20 in the store.

 

...sobo

-------------

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Unfortunately there is no standard curriculum for any of the avalanche courses in the states. Anybody can teach a class and call it a level I, even if it doesn't involve field work. I took a Level I class from Brill and a Level II from someone else. I felt the class I took from Brill gave me a lot more practical knowledge, including digging pits in the field. The Level II was fine and was useful if you wanted to go into greater depth about snow metamorphosis, but unnecessary for most recreational backcountry travelers.

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I don't know about level 2 being unnecessary for most recreational backcountry travelers. yeah if you intend to head out once a year into the the BC yeah you are right. But most people I Imagine who use this site are more then your avarage recreational BC traveler. But who am I to say. even if you are avarage it is very easy to get caught in condtions unsafe durring the winter.

 

As for the US not having a set cirumulum you are also right that I why over any class in the US I would recomend the Canadain courses. Because it is set and you have to test out of the class vrs getting a certificate of particapation.

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The canadians also deal with much more complex snowpacks than us PNW residents. More reason to trust the CAA for your training, or at least an instructor who has spent some time in a continental snowpack studying. Those canuks deal with transitional and continental rockies snowpacks that release all season long snowfall or no. The avalanche hazard is much more predictable in the Cascades maritime snowpack. Walking out on a slope and falling through a crust into bottomless facets gives new respect for Selkirks snow. hellno3d.gif

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I took a 2 day course on Mt. Hood last year. 1 day in the classroom the other in the field. It was tought by Glenn Kessler, one of the lead climbing rangers on Rainier. The course was Recommended by both the American and Canadian Avalanche Association. I highly recommend this course. You might be able to find info about it at MountainSavvy.com

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There is a group attempting to standardize the Avalanche Level I, II & III curriculums, They are AIARE, www.avtraining.org. Their website lists avalanche education providers that use the AIARE / AAA curriculums which were created by CAA/ACMG guru Karl Klassen, Jean Pavillard and several other avalanche educators from Alaska , California and Colorado. I suggest invest in a level I then if you want more education, look at CAATS level I in Canada (1week) or take level II which will give more tools for assessing stability. Good Luck

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If it's Brill's class at REI, it's well worth the money. If you take it at Marmot in Bellevue (same class) I think there's less people in the class. You might get more out of it, but you have to drive across to the Eastside.

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I agree... I do know Paul Bauger somewhat, he is a great guy and seems to know his shit.

As for the web site it dose suck

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