This one day course will introduce you to the fundamentals of backcountry skiing and snowboarding. After this course, you will be able to plan and execute an efficient yet simple backcountry tour. Come out and learn the techniques and tricks from a professional ski guide, and get away from the lifts and the crowds of the ski area. Our Backcountry 1.0 course is the ideal preparation for an AIARE 1 avalanche course.
You must be an intermediate to advanced skier for this course and be comfortable on ungroomed terrain. Here is a good example of intermediate skiers and riders.
Backcountry 1.0 is the first part in our three-part intro to backcountry series. We highly recommend reserving a spot on our popular Backcountry 2.0 course to continue working on skills and techniques learned on day 1. Once you build a solid foundation, you’ll be ready to join our Backcountry 3.0 course to add a few more tools to your kit.
This course will take place on the North Shore of Lake Tahoe, within the Tahoe National Forest. We have many trailhead options at our disposal and your guide will pick the location with the best conditions for the day. Alpenglow operates in partnership with the Tahoe National Forest and Squaw Valley | Alpine Meadows.
What to Expect
Depending on the fitness level of the group, technical ability and daily conditions, skiers and riders can expect multiple laps of fresh tracks while learning various tips and tricks from your guide during both the uphill and downhill portions of the day. Terrain varies from wide open bowls to widely spaced trees.
Each morning starts off with a safety meeting with your guide and a gear check to make sure everyone has what they need for the day. Depending on the zone, we’ll either tour right out of our offices, or take a short drive to a trailhead.
Your guide will come prepared with a defined itinerary for the day, but you’ll have the opportunity to stop and ask questions along the way.
Who Can Participate
Intermediate and advanced downhill skiers or riders, with little to no backcountry experience are welcome on this course. Skiers and riders must be competent in a variety of terrain and snow conditions. Skiers and riders must be able to link turns on ungroomed black diamond terrain confidently while maintaining control. This video gives a good example of intermediate to advanced skiers and riders.
Skiers or riders 12-16 years old can join us with a parent. 16 years and over are able to join without accompaniment.
- Touring equipment options
- Clothing layering and techniques
- Use of Beacon, Probe and Shovel
- How to interpret an Avalanche Bulletin
- Uphill travel techniques using climbing skins
- Avalanche hazard recognition and avoidance
- Downhill travel techniques and group management
Difficulty: Strong intermediate to advanced skiing level required.
A complete backcountry touring setup is required. We have a small demo fleet that we rent to our clients at competitive prices. We rent beacons, probes, shovels, touring skis, touring boots and splitboards.