Winter Camping Course - Seattle - 2024

Snowshoeing Course

Snowshoe / Winter Camping Course

Snowshoe / Winter Camping Course - Seattle-2024


There are currently no restrictions in place. The lecture and field trips will be held in person, and the trip planning meeting will be held remotely. Masks are optional. 

We encourage participants to carpool for the field trips, as parking can be limited. We do not facilitate carpooling, however course emails will include information on ways participants may  arrange carpooling amongst yourselves.

As a starting point 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.

Before signing up for this course please be sure you have access to a winter-capable vehicle.     Lack of access to adequate transportation for the field trip will not be considered a sufficient reason to refund the course fee.

Learn to make a comfortable camp in the snow. This course will cover both winter tent camping and non-emergency winter shelters (snow caves, igloos, and other options).  The course consists of

  • one Lecture
  • one online Trip Preview session,
  • and your choice of one all-weekend Field Trip, which may includes building an individual emergency snow shelter!

We show up well prepared on the Saturday morning, and do not conclude until Sunday afternoon.

What to Expect in the Course
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/igloo in small groups. Instructors will be on hand to offer guidance and advice.

Please note you must sign up for one Field Trip weekend.   The locations could change- finalization will be determined as the date approaches for each weekend. 

We will set up our tents, and review our setups to share gear choices, and experiences.  We will then turn our focus to the variety of other shelter options and emergency bivouac possibilities. Instructors will be on hand to offer guidance and advice.

Gear: In addition to snowshoeing and overnight gear, each individual will need to  bring at a collapsible snow shovel for tent site and bivouac setups. 

If you are new to winter camping, you will need to source by rental, borrowing, or purchase of the necessary gear (tent shelter, sleeping bag, sleeping pad(s), cook stove (fuel), pan(s), utensils, such clothing as needed to be well prepared for the overnight stay. 

Prerequisites: Completion of Basic Snowshoeing  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

Questions? Email Tim at:

Financial Assistance

The Mountaineers strives to serve everyone, regardless of ability to pay. We are committed to providing access to outdoor recreation, education and conservation opportunities for all members and youth in the communities we serve. If you would like to take this course and are experiencing financial hardship or limitations, please apply for financial assistance. Here is more information about the Mountaineers Financial Assistance Program.

Course Requirements

This course has no scheduled activities.

Required Equipment

See "Required Equipment" under the field trip description.

Course Materials