AIARE Level 2: Analyzing Snow Stability And Avalanche Hazard

An EMS Climbing Guide, an Alaskan Heli-Ski Guide, an outdoor educator from PA, two other backcountry travelers joined us for the first and only Level 2 Avalanche Course of the season.

The level 2 course is a 4-day program that provides backcountry leaders the opportunity to advance their avalanche knowledge and decision making skills. This course also includes the introductory and prerequisite components for the professional progression: the level 3 certificate.

We started the course at the AMC Highland Center in Crawford Notch. After reviewing the knowledge from the Level 1 Course we spent the afternoon upgrading our companion rescue skills to handle multiple and deep burials with a close look at rescue leadership.

The next day after some morning classroom which looked closely at the process of snow formation and metamorphism we jumped on the summit Quad lift at Wildcat and explored the snow pack right off the 4,400 feet summit with a detailed snow profile.

Measuring temperature gradient
Getting a run at the end of Day 2
Day 3- Ski tour to Gulf of Slides
Skinning up into Main Gully
Main Gully
EMS Climbing Guide Mike Lackman kicking steps up Main Gully
Higher up in the gully
Some snowpack observations near the drop in point
Mike recording findings
At the end of the day we practiced proper probing since a nearby party was locked out of their car
Day 4 brought us up to familiar Tuckerman Ravine
The group discusses the changing conditions
Skinning up to Right Gully
Craig Taylor, another AIARE Instructor, holds a level 1 course nearby
Digging in
Some consistent CTH, Q2 results 40cm down on a thin layer of faceting d/f's
Last run of the course
Our classroom

6 more avalanche courses scheduled as long as the snow holds!

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