Happy fall everyone. My big news is the website. My best assets are in my outdoor skills. So for website design, I hired an excellent Rossland company called SpaceRace Digital.
There are a lot of resources on the website, including the revised Trip Planner & Slope Specific Decision Tool, which with student feedback, I’ve developed over the last two years. There is also a very useful Discussion Paper which explains how the tool works.
You’ll be able to see the upcoming course schedule, including lodge based AST2 courses. In addition, there is a blog which has the article I wrote on climbing Half Dome. After 10 years of dreaming about rock climbing the face in one day, I trained heavily this spring and had an incredible adventure. I’m pretty proud and hope you like the article.
For 2015-16, I still have 2 spaces for our AST2 at Powder Creek Lodge. Last year, they had a very good winter compared to other places. Powder Creek is situated in the Purcell Mountain Range at an elevation of 2100 meters, where they seem to be in a snow belt that often receives up to double the amount of precipitation compared to other nearby areas. This course will run from January 2-9, 2016. We’re going to offer a slightly different format. The AST2 will be held on Sunday/Monday/Wednesday/Friday. For the Tuesday/Thursday/Saturday field days, students will have the opportunity to put their skills into practice, planning and carrying out their own ski tours. There are also daily classroom sessions, where learnings are reviewed and the next day’s trips are planned. And in a week long lodge trip, there is time for rest, recuperation, and sauna!
Check out the page for more information about this course.
By now, most people have heard the forecast for a strong El Nino weather pattern. For our area, they’re predicting less snow than average. I remember the last strong El Nino in 1997-98. Although it wasn’t an epic year, it wasn’t bad, and we did get 52 cm of really light dry pow on March 4, 1998. I still remember wishing I had a snorkel on my first couple runs that morning!
Climate change doesn’t help either. I’m glad that we’re trying to help a little. Three percent of your fees to Kootenay Avalanche Courses go to climate change organizations that are focused on saving our winters in the future.
I imagine that the Powder Creek AST2 course in January will fill up pretty soon. So, I’m pleased to announce our next Lodge Based AST2 from February 12-19, 2017 at Hilda Lodge. Yes, we’re going back to Hilda for the third time. Hilda is a special place. Six people max. The previous two Hilda courses filled early. Just sayin’… This page will have further details.
Most of you have taken the AST1, but for new students this year, Avalanche Canada has revised the AST1 curriculum. I was part of the committee that helped oversee the revision. I’m pleased that we have a simpler curriculum, which will make the course better. There is more emphasis on human factors, and decision making is mainly focused on using the Trip Planner.
Best of luck to all of us that Ullr finds his way to your neighbourhood this winter!