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avalanche

Facets and Faceshots: Backcountry Learning at Purcell Mountain Lodge

It’s an intensive course that doesn’t feel intense. Like the layers of an unpredictable snowpack, the lessons of an immersive AST 2 course in the backcountry settle gradually. Here at Purcell Mountain Lodge, you don't learn behind a desk. The lessons seep into the stories you swap around the dining table and in the pause for thought on the uptrack, where a few feet to the left makes all the difference... [...]

Three Things I’ve Learned, with Joe Lammers

Mountains make the greatest teachers and provide us with countless opportunities to contemplate, question and learn. Many decades of experiences in the mountains have left Joe Lammers with some well-tuned advice for mountain enthusiasts. In this installment of “Three Things I’ve Learned”, Abby Cooper taps into the wisdom of this public avalanche forecaster whose ski career has taken him from the world of TV to ski patrol and everything in between.  [...]

What Do Avalanche Professionals Do in the Summer?

When wildflowers take over the once snow-covered mountain slopes, avalanche specialists in the Canadian Rockies are far from done their job of keeping us safe. Come summer, many professionals from Avalanche Canada and Parks Canada are still busy with avalanche work. What are they up to when the snow stops flying? [...]

Why You Should Upgrade Your Avalanche Skills: Q+A with Marty Schaffer

It's hard to come by a better spokesperson for avalanche safety than Marty Schaffer. This ACMG Ski Guide has grown up in the ski industry his whole life, works closely with Avalanche Canada, and now runs his own ski guiding operation, CAPOW - Canadian Powder Guiding. He gives us the low-down on why backcountry ski and snowboard enthusiasts should upgrade their Avalanche Skills Training, what an AST 2 course has to offer, and what the biggest mistakes are that he's seen in avalanche terrain assessment. [...]

Don’t Miss Avalanche Awareness Night at The Banff Centre

Touring gear: check. Ski buds: check. Thirst for powder: check. Avy awareness? Here's a chance to learn about avalanche risks associated with backcountry and out-of-bounds travel - featuring presentations by snow safety experts, films from the Banff Mountain Film & Book Festival, door prizes and a trade show! Presented in partnership with Avalanche Canada Foundation and Canadian Pacific. [...]

Top 10 of 2015: Our Most-Read Articles of the Year

Call it our 'best of' if you like, but what this list really represents is the collection of stories that resonated the most with our community this past year. They are the most-read on the website and the most-shared on social media, but more importantly, in these articles we are proud to have featured the people, places and projects that are truly elevating mountain culture here in the Canadian Rockies. Read them now or bookmark them for later when you need a good dose of mountain inspiration. [...]

Understanding, Underneath: An Avalanche Survival Story

We all hope we’ll adventure furiously in the mountains for years and years without incident. But each and every time we step out into the great outdoors - each time we seek that joy-filled rush only the mountains can bring - we tap into the potential that something will go wrong. For Abby Cooper, getting caught in an avalanche was a wake-up call to trust her gut feelings. Here is her story. [...]

Perfecting The Art of Bailing

Calling off a mission is not easy. Mountain folk tend to suffer from serious FOMO and have a hard time saying “no” to the peaks, their friends, and the potential for a great time. But, sometimes bailing on an adventure is the right thing to do. Abby Cooper outlines the factors that influence these decisions and provides a mental checklist to help you make the right call. [...]

Summer Shred Missions in the Canadian Rockies

Without a winter to brag about, many of us have this lingering feeling that winter is still just around the corner. Hate to break it to you friends, but she’s gone. At least until next season, which, fingers crossed, will be a doozy. Until then, contributor Abby Cooper brings us her best suggestions for summer stashes in the Canadian Rockies. [...]

The Seriousness of Slackcountry

Each winter, skiers and snowboarders duck the lines that separate in-bounds from out at ski areas throughout Western Canada. Enticed by the untracked terrain beyond the ropes, many do so without avalanche training and the gear that could save their lives if the slope goes for a slide. Here's how you can prepare yourself for your next slip into slackcountry. [...]