Winter Camping Course - Seattle - 2016

Snowshoeing Course

Snowshoe / Winter Camping Course

Snowshoe / Winter Camping Course - Seattle

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.

Learn to make a comfortable camp in the snow. This course will cover both winter tent camping and non-emergency winter shelters (primarily snow caves, but touching on igloos and other options). The course consists of one lecture and one all-weekend Field Trip, which includes building a snow cave! We show up well prepared on the Saturday, but do not conclude until Sunday afternoon.

The lecture will address gear choices as well as the practical considerations and techniques of setting up a camp in the snow. This is also an excellent opportunity to meet other campers for setting up carpools and small groups for gear sharing (tents, stoves) and snow cave construction.

At the field trip we will begin by snowshoeing a short distance to the camp site. We will set up our tents, but will then turn our focus to constructing snow caves in small groups. Instructors will be on hand to offer guidance and advice.

Gear: In addition to snowshoeing and overnight gear, each small group should bring at least two collapsible snow shovels for snow cave construction.

Prerequisites: Completion of Basic Snowshoeing (formerly Snowshoe Lite) or equivalency. Alpine Scrambling and Basic Climbing graduates are also eligible to enroll in this course.

Note that attendance at the lecture is MANDATORY in order for you to take the Field Trip.

Please specify your carpool preferences for the field trip when signing up (or edit them later). Then click the link in your Profile to view other students' carpool preferences so that you can organize your own carpooling arrangements. Also check the details & eligibility requirements on the Seattle Snowshoe web site.

Questions? Email Tim at:

Badges you will earn:

Course Requirements

This course has no scheduled activities.

Required Equipment


  • Avalanche probe for scouting snow cave locations
  • Additional dry clothing for sleeping
  • Shovel - collapsible, metal preferred
  • Study, four season tent with rain fly
  • Warm sleeping bag
  • Stove and stove platform
  • Stove fuel
  • Large pot for melting snow
  • Cup and spoon
  • Plenty of high-fat food
  • Wands to alert skiers to your cave


  • Whisk broom for sweeping out snow
  • Rubber gloves for smoothing out snow cave walls
  • Snow saw (for igloos)
  • Bivy bag
  • Sleeping bag liner


Bring a deck of cards or a game - something fun for the evening. Booties for the night. Another dessert! Remember to have a complete set of dry socks and underwear to sleep in. Plan group meals with others in your camping group. Some people bring small battery-powered Christmas lights to put by the entrance of their snow caves.

Course Materials