AIARE 1 Avalanche Course 12/19-12/21

Yesterday concluded our first AIARE 1 Avalanche Course of the season and conditions were great for such an early season course! Two EMS Schools New Paltz, NY guides and one of our North Conway guides joined 8 other aspirant back-country travelers to learn about decision making and risk management in avalanche terrain.

Beacon Range Check at the AMC Highland Center
Examining some Surface Hoar while on our Observational Outing
Do you know how this is formed and why it is important in relation to avalanche safety?
Team Orange conducts a trip planning session in the pack room of Pinkham Notch Visitor Center the morning of the tour day
Team Black & Blue checks the updated avalanche bulletin
Successfully skinning up from Hermit Lake into Tuckerman Ravine
The skier group converses at the first aid cache before entering consequential terrain to make sure they are all still on the same page and to update their observations
Team Orange is high up in the Sluice below the cliff band, you may need to zoom in to spot them
Team Black & Blue spreads out while crossing the lower center bowl
Team Orange visible just to the left of Right Gully while we make our way over towards The Chute
All smiles during our run down the Sherburne Ski Trail at the end of the day
My field notes from Day 3...
My field notes from Day 3… I wish I had better handwriting skillz

What a treat it was to be able to skin all the way into the bowl so early in the season. The Sherbi was in pretty “fast” conditions and is definitely, as I noted in my book, in need of some love. Unfortunately Santa must have thought skiers where a pretty naughty bunch this year as he’s having his friend Mother Nature deliver us a hefty dose of our least favorite precipitation, rain. Personally I would prefer coal but what can you do. Let’s hope to bring in the New Year with some copious amounts of new snow!

To the 11 engaged participants of this first avalanche course of the season, thank you for making this a fun and productive 3 days. See you in the mountains!

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