AIARE 1 for Snowshoers/Skiers w/ Evening Lectures (Lodging Not Included)

Avalanche Safety Course

Avalanche AIARE Level 1

AIARE Level 1 avalanche safety course, open to all (skiers, splitboarders, and snowshoers)

COVID-19: Learn about our most up-to-date guidance for participants and leaders on our COVID-19 Response page. All participants and leaders must agree to the COVID-19 Code of Conduct before participating in this Mountaineers course.


This is an AIARE certified level 1 avalanche course consisting of three evening lectures at the Mountaineers clubhouse in Seattle, and a two-day field trip based out of the Mountaineers Baker Lodge at the Mount Baker ski area. Lodging cost is not included in the registration fee. Students are recommended to stay at the Mount Baker Lodge (see below for more information). The lectures and field trip dates are as follows: 

  • Lecture 1: Thurs, Dec 13th, 6:30pm - 9:30pm
  • Lecture 2: Mon, Dec 17th, 6:30pm - 9:30pm
  • Lecture 3: Wed, Jan 2nd, 6:30pm - 9:30pm
  • Field Trip: Sat, Jan 5th - Sun, Jan 6th, 8am - 4pm

The course introduces students to the primary factors that cause avalanches such as weather, snowpack, human error and terrain and stresses ways to avoid avalanches, such as reading terrain, trip planning, snowpack evaluation, understanding avalanche forecasts, travel techniques and team decision making. 


The class is oriented toward demonstrating practical ways to make safe decisions when traveling in avalanche terrain. The planning and decision making tools introduced in this course are just as applicable to managing all sorts of mountaineering hazards as they are to safety in avalanche terrain. Companion rescue methods are also covered in this class.

I can't think of one moment in the course which was not a learning experience. I especially liked how my instructors challenged us to judge terrain and make choices at the field trip, and then asked us to reflect on those decisions.

The course registration fee does not include lodging.  Students are encouraged to stay at the Mount Baker Lodge on the Friday and Saturday night of the field weekend to make logistics and travel easier. The field trip starts early on Saturday morning and weather can make an early morning arrival challenging. 


In late November, registered students will receive a welcome email and a link to register for the Baker Lodge. People registered for the class will have an opportunity to sign up for lodging before public registration opens up for the lodge.


To learn more about the AIARE approach to avalanche education used by the Mountaineers, visit the AIARE website.


During the open registration period, students can cancel their registration and receive a refund of their course fee minus a $50 cancellation fee. After registration closes, students will receive no refunds for cancellations. Attendance is required at all classes and no make-up classes are provided.

Badges you will earn:

Course Requirements
Course Activity Date Availability Leader
Avalanche Classroom Session
Baker Lodge
Fri, Feb 15, 2019
Registration closed Feb 13
2 participants
9 instructors
Seattle Program Center
Thu, Jan 2, 2020
Registration closed Dec 19
0 participants
10 instructors
Seattle Program Center
Mon, Jan 6, 2020
Registration closes Dec 19
0 participants
4 instructors
Seattle Program Center
Wed, Jan 8, 2020
Registration closed Dec 19
0 participants
4 instructors
Weekend Field Trip
Baker Lodge
Sat, Feb 16, 2019 -
Sun, Feb 17, 2019
Registration closed Feb 14
2 participants
9 instructors
Baker Lodge
Sat, Jan 11, 2020 -
Sun, Jan 12, 2020
Registration closed Jan 19
0 participants
7 instructors
Required Equipment

During the two day field trip students will need the following equipment:

  • Either backcountry skis / splitboard with skins, or snowshoes. 
  • A metal shovel designed for avalanche rescue (no plastic shovels)
  • A full length avalanche probe (Minimum length of 240cm / Recommended length of 280cm)
  • An avalanche beacon (3 antenna beacons are required)
  • Clothes suitable both for standing around and getting exercise outdoors all day in possibly cold, windy, snowy or even rainy conditions. 
Course Materials

You must register for this course to see course materials.