Intro to Steep & Technical Riding aka Couloirs 101

 

  • Dates: Feb 27-28; March 20-21
  • Women’s Dates: Feb 27-28; Mar 13-14
  • Duration: 2 Days
  • Level: Advanced/Double Diamond ski ability required
  • Client Ratio: 4:1
  • Cost: $400
  • Included: Instruction, ropes and group gear
  • Not Included: Transportation, Gratuities, meals and personal technical and touring equipment

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Book Women’s Program Online Now!

This weekend introduces the techniques of Ski-Alpinism in a non-glacial setting such as couloirs and steeper terrain found in zones such as The Kendall Adventure Zone, Snoqualmie North, The Alaska Adventure Zone and other classic lines across the Cascades! We will cover the following

  • -Non-technical solutions to increase security for steep entrances
  • -Belayed skiing
  • -Rappelling with skis on the backpack (and transitioning at the bottom of the rappel to get them back on your feet)
  • -Rappelling with skis on feet
  • -Coaching on technique in steeper terrain

 BCA Guides operates under special use permit from the Mt Baker/Snoqualmie & Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forests.

Field Day 1
@Snoqualmie Pass, arrive 7:00 am, ready to go at 7:30am, perform a gear check and tour to our first site to work on the following:

  • Belayed skiing,
  • Rappelling with skis on the backpack (and transitioning at the bottom of the rappel to get them back on your feet),
  • Rappelling with skis on feet,
  • Coaching on technique in steeper terrain

Field Day 2
We continue our education with a full day tour to one of the objectives to put our skills into practice!

Touring Gear

  • Adjustable Ski poles with powder (big) baskets*
  • Skis or snowboard.Skis should be equipped with alpine touring bindings or telemark bindings. We prefer split decision snowboards w/ skins because you do not need snow shoes.
  • Alpine touring, telemark, or snowboard boots
  • Skins with glop stopper (skin wax)
  • Avalanche Beacon This needs to be Triple Antenna.
  • Shovel Small collapsible style
  • Avalanche Probe 265cm or longer
  • Helmet for riding and climbing adjustable to fit over hats

Technical Gear

  • Harness
  • Belay Device with locking carabiner
  • Helmet for riding and climbing adjustable to fit over
  • 2 Large Locking Carabiners
  • 1 24” Sling

Upper Body

  • Lightweight base layer T-shirt or long sleeve polypropylene shirt
  • Soft Shell
  • 1 Down/synthetic jacket with hood
  • 1 Hard shell jacket with hood Waterproof and breathable. roomy enough to fit over multiple layers.
  • 1 pair light gloves
  • Shell gloves or mitts
  • Warm hat Wool or synthetic
  • Balaclava or Buff
  • Shade hat or baseball cap

Lower Body

  • 1 pair heavy wool/synthetic socks Check boot fit with liner and wool socks on
  • 1 pair lightweight long underwear
  • Soft shell pants
  • Shell pants Waterproof/breathable with full side zips, Gore-Tex or equivalent is best

Backpack

  • Internal frame pack 2000-2500 cubic inch capacity, avoid unnecessary options that add weight

Miscellaneous Equipment

  • Googles and Sunglasses 100% UV protection
  • Personal first aid kit Basics: moleskin/blister kit, Band-Aids, first-aid tape, ibuprofen, personal medications, etc.
  • Lip balm At least SPF 20,
  • Sunscreen At least SPF 40
  • Headlamp compact LED
  • 2 water bottles 1 liter wide-mouth Nalgene and 1 bottle holster, or
  • Multi-tool.
  • Bandana
  • Hand wipes
  • 1 small stainless steel thermos (Optional)
  • Lunch & snack food (no more than 2 pounds)
  • Camera
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

WILL MY GUIDE (OR GUIDES) BE?
You will receive an introductory email with the instructor for your course. We are small company who enjoy working together in the mountains as well as highly skilled professionals who hold current Wilderness First Responder certification and are proficient in technical rescue and evacuation skills. Our guides are dedicated to the world of alpinism, many having first ascents and hold professional certifications with AIARE & AMGA. The AMGA is part of the IFMGA, which is the international body of certified mountain guides.

HOW MUCH SHOULD I TIP MY GUIDES?
Tipping is considered standard practice in the guiding industry. Tipping amounts vary – so $15-20 per day per person/per guide is average that works well for the guides without a serious blow to your wallet. Often 10% of the course cost is a good rule-of-thumb. If you feel that the program was exceptional or substandard the tip can reflect that.

CAN I RENT EQUIPMENT FROM BCAG?
No we work with Ascent Outdoors, they rent avalanche safety equipment, alpine touring, tele and split boards click here. Quantities are limited so please contact them as soon as possible if you are interested.

HOW HEAVY WILL MY PACK BE?
You will carry 10-15 pounds, which will include everything on the equipment list.

WHEN DO I NEED TO PAY THE BALANCE OF MY TRIP?
Payable when you make your reservation by check, or credit card.

WHAT HAPPENS IF I NEED TO CANCEL MY TRIP?
If you should decide to cancel your trip, BCAG must be notified in writing. Your trip will be cancelled from the date we receive written notice. You will be assessed a cancellation fee according to the following schedule:
90 to 22 days from trip departure – 50% of trip cost
30 days or less – 100% of trip cost

WHAT HAPPENS IF I WANT TO CHANGE THE DATES OF MY TRIP?
Schedule changes are subject to a $50 fee per person up to 2 weeks out and $100 less than 14 days from the start of the trip and may not be possible. If conditions or circumstances preclude running a scheduled program we reserve the right to make the decision as to whether the program will be canceled, rescheduled, or an alternative provided.

WHAT HAPPENS IF BC ADVENTURE GUIDES HAS TO CANCEL MY TRIP?
In the rare circumstance where we need to cancel a program you can reschedule without a fee or receive a refund on your deposit. If circumstances arise that force us to cancel a program that is already in progress we reserve the right to decide whether a refund or credit, at a prorated rate, will be issued. We are not responsible for cancellation fees or costs arising from your changed or cancelled flights, lodging, or other arrangements. We strongly recommend obtaining trip cancellation insurance from your travel agent.

DO I NEED TO PURCHASE TRIP INSURANCE?
BCAG highly encourages the purchasing of trip cancellation and travel insurance on domestic trips and requires it on International trips. Europeans and Canadians use it because travel insurance provides coverage for trip cancellation and interruption, travel delays, loss of baggage and travel documents, baggage delays, medical expenses and emergency assistance.
Several options include Travelex or Travel Guard International at (1-877-248-8992) & www.travelguard.com for protecting your investment, however there are many companies to choose from and you may wish to do some individual research regarding which policy is right for you.

WHEN SHOULD I PLAN TO LEAVE A RETURN HOME?
We often get this question because most people need to know how much total time they need to take off work. Our Avi and Ski Tours begin by 8 AM at the trailhead and return to the car by 3. Our return to Seattle on the last day typically allows you to get back between 5-7 with the descent and drive back.