For 2022 SMC is proud to have partnered up with the Silverton Avalanche School to offer a
Pro Level I course. SMC will sponsor the course and provide logistics and Silverton will provide the instructors.
Since 1962, the Silverton Avalanche School has educated skiers, snowboarders, snowmobilers, ski patrollers, search & rescue personnel, public safety personnel and anyone working in snow about avalanche hazards.
SAS is dedicated to delivering mountain safety education to the recreational and professional audience with the goal of reducing accidents and fatalities. SAS formed the professional training progression for avalanche workers in 2014 and continues to work with the industry to create standards and promote innovate avalanche training and risk management techniques.
Courses are taught by internationally recognized members of the American Avalanche Association (A3) and the Canadian Avalanche Association.
Our instructors bring a wealth of professional experience and a passion for education. Backgrounds include avalanche forecasters, snow scientists, ski patrol, heli guides, mountain rescue specialists and IFMGA mountain guides. All have gone through a rigorous training and education process and bring both practice and theory to the the table.
Who Should Take this Course
This course is designed for avalanche workers just starting in the field. The course covers the fundamentals of understanding and managing avalanches in an operational setting. Students learn how to become snow weather and avalanche observers and work in an operational setting.
Students learn how to recognize and travel through avalanche terrain, and how to document snow, avalanche, and weather phenomena to the US Industry standard. Instructors provide coaching and teaching both in the field and the classroom. Upon successful completion of a written test and field test, students are awarded certification recognized by the American Avalanche Association (A3).
Pre-requisites for Enrollment. All are all required:
1) Course applicants have completed the following A3-recognized courses prior to enrollment:
a) Recreational Level 1 Avalanche Training
b) Avalanche Rescue Applicants who believe they have the educational equivalent of the above-listed prerequisites can apply to the Pro Course Provider of their choice for a Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) review. Course enrollment in these situations is at the discretion of the Pro Course Provider.
2) One winter season (20 days or more) of relevant experience (demonstrated through one of the following).
c) Prior avalanche work experience; OR
d) A supervised unpaid work internship in the guiding/avalanche industry supported by a letter of reference; OR
e) Letter of recommendation from AAA Professional member; OR
f) AAA Membership (Affiliate or Professional); OR
g) Winter backcountry travel experience supported by documented trip planning and recorded field observations that contributed to avalanche hazard assessment and personal avalanche risk management.
This can be done directly through the Silverton Avalanche School site. If you have questions about the course curriculum or your eligibility talk with SAS directly.
- The Bishop to Mammoth area with daily locations to be determined depending upon the best learning snow.
- Due to COVID-19 SMC will not be organizing carpools. Please make sure your vehicle is equipped for snow travel.
- Please purchase the following snow study tools prior to your course:
- Compass with inclinometer or better yet a dedicated slope inclinometer. (Lifelink makes one of these)
- Altimeter (optional)
- hand lens and snow crystal card
- You can find these online at:
Mountain Equipment Co-Op