OUT: OUTside Connection December 31, 2008
Avalanche education classes
Winter brings with it many beauties, with the accompanying irony that much of the beauty is swathed in danger.
New snow lures recreationists of all sorts, from skiers to boarders to snowmobile riders.
But Colorado’s early season snowpack is notoriously dangerous, and this year already there have been three backcountry fatalities, including one each near Crested Butte (snowboarder), Aspen (skier) and Granby (snowmobiler).
The Colorado Avalanche Information Center (http://avalanche.state.co.us) Web site offers updated avalanche and weather information along with schedules for avalanche education classes.
Avalanche courses can be as short as a weekend but the education they offer can last, and save, a lifetime.
WHAT: Avalanche awareness training courses.
WHO: Trained instructors offer lessons in avalanche phenomena, route finding, terrain assessment, rescue and the most-recent avalanche transceiver protocols.
WHERE: Offered several times each month according to region of state. Most frequently in mountain communities.
WHEN: AIARE is the American Institute of Avalanche Research and Education. Unless noted, students must supply beacons, probes, shovels and backcountry ski equipment.