Basic Snowshoeing - Olympia - 2023

Snowshoeing Course

Basic Snowshoeing

This series of lectures will include an introduction to winter activities, avalanche awareness, safety, equipment, 10 essentials, cold weather ailments and winter recreation etiquette. We will also have a brief overview of what to expect on the field trip. Even if you already know how to ski or snowshoe, the training in avalanche terrain recognition and avalanche avoidance, is well worth taking the class and improving your safety in the backcountry.

Learn how to snowshoe and basic winter travel techniques.

Night 1 January 11 @ 6PM
Introduction to Winter Activities and avalanche awareness.
We will cover the 10 essentials, winter aliments, etiquette and snowshoe equipment and what to expect on the field trip.

Night 2 January 19th @ 6PM
NWAC will present Avalanche Awareness. Please login at 5:50 PM in order to be ready to go on time. This is required in order to graduate from the course.

Field Trip Sunday, January 29, 2023. Meet at Longmire in Mount Rainier National Park. Details will be discussed in the first Zoom meeting.

Course Requirements

This course has no scheduled activities.

Additional badges needed to graduate


Required Equipment

Every person's clothing needs are different. Some people get colder more quickly than others. Remember: NO COTTON.  If you don't have any of this gear, try borrowing it from friends before you spend money.

For  the  field  trip,  you  must  bring  the  Ten  Essentials  and  Clothing  &  Equipment.

 TEN ESSENTIALS: Map  (provided  to  you), compass, sunglasses and sunscreen, extra clothing, emergency shelter, headlamp/flashlight, first-aid supplies, fire starter, matches, knife, extra food & water. Sun protection is a must. Snow reflection is highly damaging to eyes; UV damage and sunburns are common if proper protection is not used. 

Pack  (large  enough  for  all  winter  gear)


Ski Poles/Trekking poles with baskets

Sturdy, lug-soled, waterproofed boots   

Clothing Layers (no cotton)

Inner  Layer:

 Wicking Liner socks, 2 pairs (one pair worn, other pair carried)

Synthetic Warm Underwear, top & bottom, 2 sets (one set worn, other set carried)

Liner gloves,  (+extra set in pack)

Insulating  Layer:

 Outer socks, 2 pairs (one pair worn, other pair carried)

Pants, synthetic fleece or wool. Soft-shell or sturdy hiking pants suffice for many.

Shirt or sweater, synthetic fleece or wool

Mittens or gloves, 2 pairs (one pair worn, other pair carried)

Protective  Layer:

 Rain parka with hood – waterproof & breathable preferred; remember, coated nylon doesn’t breathe and traps moisture under the clothing.

Rain pants – waterproof & breathable preferred to avoid trapped moisture.

Long gaiters. Be sure they fit your boots correctly so that snow doesn’t crawl underneath. GoreTex or insulated gaiters are not necessary.

Hats (one for warmth; one for sun protection).

Wind jacket (which may be your rain parka). A fleece or wind stopper vest is also handy if it is warm.

Scarf or neck gaiter if you tend to get cold easily.

Additional  Recommended  Equipment/Supplies  for  the  Field  Trip: 

 Foam sit pad

Hand and toe warmers

Toilet paper, sealable plastic bags, and hand sanitizer

Pack cover

Dry clothes and shoes in your car for the trip home

Garbage bags in your car for wet gear

Camera and extra batteries, if desired

America the Beautiful Pass ($80) or cash to pay for the National Park  entry fee.,25%2C%20valid%20for%20seven%20days)

Course Materials

You must register for this course to see course materials.