An open letter to my former AIARE students:

Hello former EMS School AIARE students,

Season’s Greetings! The snow is still coming down and I have over 6 inches in my yard so it is high time I get my pre-season email out to you all! I wanted to take a quick moment to connect with you on some exciting news regarding EMS Schools Avalanche Program this season. Please read on!

1) Guide Training– We have 4 guides heading out to Steven’s Pass in Washington state for an AIARE Instructor Training Course early this January. This commitment to training will help us offer more high quality avalanche courses to more people around New England and solidifies EMS Schools as the largest Avalanche Course provider in the East!
2) New Website– We’ve done a lot of work on our Schools website so stop by to see if we’re offering a program that might help you reach your goals this winter. We’ve grown our ski programs to include ski touring as well as back-country courses, but the greatest new addition is the ability to reserve a course right on the website! Just click on “Check Dates/Availability” and you can book just about everything without picking up the phone!
3) Join us for the Day 3 Ski Tour of a Level 1 AIARE Course! If you’ve taken a Level 1 in the last 3 years with us you can join us for the Day 3 Ski Tour day if there is space available! This is an excellent way to refresh your back-country skills gained from your recent avalanche course. We must keep our ratios to 7:1 to stay within AIARE standards, and precedence will be given to full course students (i.e. people taking the full 3 day course), however we often have a spot available. So basically check out our scheduled courses here. If you want to join us for Day 3 on one of these courses give us a call at 800-310-4504. We’ll get you on the wait list, and notify you as many days in advance as possible if there is a spot for you. We can lock the spot 3 days before the course starts to give you plenty of time to finalize travel arrangements…
The cost is only $120! You’ll be responsible for gear rentals, travel expenses, and refreshing your back-country brain by looking over your student manual (I know you’ve worn those pages out by now). We are very excited about offering this new service!
4) New Mount Washington Avalanche Center website. Check it out here. Bookmark it. Read it often. Find them on Facebook and like them there. Should be moving into the 5-Scale Avalanche Danger Rating soon!
5) Gear! We’ve got our biggest selection of beacons and avalanche gear ever this winter! With the current sale you can score a beacon at 20% off and get it in time for Christmas. Is the wife or hubby still looking for something for you? EMS has also made two excellent winter packs this season that I am excited about.

The EMS Prez Backpack is the first technical pack from EMS in a few years that I’ve really wanted to use for winter guiding. I wrote a review for it here.

The EMS Wintergreen Pack is a great back-country ski pack, and I’ll be testing it out in Stevens Pass, Washington in early January. Review forthcoming, but from checking it out at home I know I’m going to like it!

That’s it for now. Dust off your beacons (fresh batteries please), drop some wax on those skis, grab a buddy and get into the mountains. Winter is finally here!

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