We’ll meet at 8:00am at the Peak Mountain Guides office in Ouray and start off with: introductions, outfit everyone with ski touring equipment, and review the plan for the day in the backcountry. Once everyone is outfitted, the instructor will introduce the avalanche bulletin and weather forecast. Using the information found online, the group will learn how to put together an introductory trip plan for a backcountry ski tour. We will wrap up in the classroom by 9:30 am and the group will carpool to Red Mountain Pass. Upon arrival at Red Mountain Pass, we’ll begin with a demonstration of avalanche companion rescue and then we’ll go on a backcountry ski tour. During the tour, the following skills will be taught: how to use skins and touring bindings for efficient uphill travel; how to make rounded turns, AVA turns, and kick turns in the skintrack; how to conduct snowpack tests to evaluate layers in the snowpack; and how to find the highest quality snow in the backcountry. We may ski primarily in one area or we could ski a variety of different lines depending on snow conditions and group fitness. We will return to the cars in the afternoon and we’ll be back to Ouray by 4:30 pm.
The Group will meet again at 8:00 am and the instructor will guide the morning discussion as needed- focusing on the students running the meeting (being able to find: what the avalanche danger rating is for the day and the weather forecast). Out in the field, the instructor will build on the topics that were covered on day one- improving students’ comfort with equipment and movement both uphill and downhill. We’ll be back to Ouray by 4:30pm.
December 20-21, 2018
January 26-27, 2019
February 9-10, 2019
March 2-3, 2019
- Use of skins
- Touring bindings and boots
- Alpine touring skis and splitboards
- Techniques for uphill travel (AVA and kickturns)
- Interpretation of the Avalanche bulletin
- Snowpack tests
- Use of avalanche beacon, shovel, and probe
This is an open enrollment course. The maximum group size is 5.
Time and Place
This trip meets at our office at 280 7th Ave in Ouray at 8:00am.
Details on lodging/shuttles. We provide transportation from the office to the trailhead on the day of your trip.
Alpine touring skis, skins, boots, and poles are available for rent from our shop.