big mountain AIARE avy 2 course
Expand your avy education in the most rugged peaks in colorado!
Proof of vaccination and negative covid test are required for all avalanche course participants
Big Mountain AIARE Avy 2 course overview
The AIARE Avy 2 Course builds on the introductory avalanche hazard management model introduced in the AIARE 1 and adds to it the evaluation of critical hazard assessment factors. You will learn how to describe and discuss the weather, snowpack, avalanche processes, and identify how these processes relate to observations and travel within avalanche terrain.
This course will help you analyze more complex avalanche problems by introducing you to a basic forecasting framework, to be used in conjunction with and in the absence of a local forecast.
When you take your level two with San Juan Expeditions you will get hands-on experience analyzing the avalanche hazard and using your observations to make decisions in the field. We are committed to providing both tools for understanding the avalanche problem and the terrain management skills you can only get from observing an experienced guide.
Our course leaders are both AIARE certified instructors and AMGA (American Mountain Guides Association) trained guides. So when you take one of our courses you know you will be under the mentorship of an experienced and qualified guide, not just an instructor.
This means you will not only learn about avalanche theory but you will apply what you have learned by going skiing/riding under the mentorship of an experienced guide and by making real decisions.
Why take a San Juan Expedition’s AIARE Level 2 Avalanche Course?
1. We are based in Silverton and Durango, Colorado – The premier location to learn about avalanche education in the United States with a history of avalanche research.
2. Our AIARE Avalanche Instructors are also trained by the AMGA (American Mountain Guides Association). We are not just avalanche instructors but also guides with experience in a variety of terrain and snowpacks all around the world.
3. By taking our AIARE Level 2 course you get exclusive access to exclusive San Juan Expeditions Mentorship Days and Alumni groups. We are committed to helping you continue your education after your AIARE course is finished and want to connect you with other competent partners within our community.
who we are
We stand behind and hand-select everyone of our guides/instructors. All of our guides are educators first and experienced mountain athletes second. This year we have two guides that have been listed for “Piolet D’or” awards and have previously received grants for cutting edge expeditions around the world. Our team is sponsored by “The North Face” and contribute to the new product lines of technical outerwear. We have a reputation for safety in the rugged and dynamic environment of the San Juan Mountains and we take safety very seriously. We are respected in the local Durango/Silverton, community and by our happy loyal clients (see our Google reviews).
AIARE Avy 2 Course Outcomes
1. Differentiate where specific avalanche hazards exist within the landscape and identify avalanche terrain where consequences may be more severe.
2. Use and interpret weather, snow, and avalanche observations to locate appropriate terrain prior to entering and while in the field.
3. Demonstrate leadership skills within a small team that includes facilitating small group discussions, promoting appropriate terrain selection, and utilizing simple risk management strategies.
4. Implement a basic forecasting framework that can be used in conjunction with and in the absence of local supporting avalanche information.
Where You Will Stay
Silverton provides an ideal base camp for our AIARE Avy 2 Course. The town is conveniently positioned a short distance from the million-dollar highway on the Southern side of Red Mountain Pass. Nestled in a yawning valley surrounded by a crown of peaks looming above, access to technical terrain is fantastic. The historic town emanates the vibe of a remote outpost but the parallels to a rugged frontiers town stop there. Historic Greene St. hosts a variety of Coffee shops, restaurants, bars and more to indulge in on your off time from the course. With no shortage of places to rest your muscles after a long day in the mountains, our lodging partners The Columbine Road House, Avon Hotel, and The Wyman Hotel offer San Juan Expeditions guests a 10% discount on their preferred lodging. If you have any additional questions on lodging feel free to reach out to us at [email protected]
where we will meet
The first morning of the AIARE Avy 2 Course we will have a meeting at San Juan Expeditions HQ. We will go over the itinerary for the next three days, you will meet your guides, we will be sure all liability waivers have been completed and then we will begin the classroom portion of the AIARE Avy 2 Course. During this meeting, we will adhere to our COVID-19 policy to ensure all our participants safety is prioritized. After the first day of the course, meeting locations may vary depending on the tour plans for the following days. All this information will be shared with you by your guides and instructors.
What is Included in the cost?
– Three days with an AMGA certified & trained guide
– Federal land usage surcharge (USFS/BLM)
– Avalanche rescue equipment (beacon, shovel, and probe)
– AIARE Field Notebook
– Guide gratuity
– Snow travel equipment (splitboard or AT skis)
– Personal clothing/gear
past clients feedback
Anyone participating in our programs must fill out a waiver beforehand. If you are under 18, please have your parent/guardian complete.
Please familiarize yourself with our Booking & Cancellation Policies.
Skiers/riders should be in good physical condition, and confident/comfortable on their method of snow travel (backcountry touring skis or splitboard).