Level 2

Cost Duration Dates
$525 4-days or 40 hours See Dates & Sign Up in Tab

Course Description


The level 2 course is designed for students with level 1 avalanche skills.  We go deeper into the science of snow metamorphism, and use this to have a better understanding of the season snowpack history and the nature of existing avalanche problems.  We use the AAI Backcountry Avalanche Checklist as a system for sorting and prioritizing information in the field, setting a tone of teamwork, and minimizing human factor traps.
Forty percent of the course is classroom based and the other sixty percent is field based. We will travel in the backcountry, in and around avalanche terrain.
This course will cover the following:

  • Tracking the season snowpack history
  • Characteristics of the different avalanche problems
  • Weather history, avalanche problems, and stability assessment
  • Formation of persistent weak layers – facets, depth hoar, surface hoar
  • Wet snow metamorphism
  • Avalanche terrain – large & small scale features
  • Group management in challenging/complex terrain
  • Avalanche runout
  • Stability tests – incorporating strength, structure and propagation potential
  • Advanced avalanche rescue
  • SWAG documentation
  • Tour planning
  • Use of the AAI Backcountry Avalanche Checklist as a field tool for sorting & prioritizing information
  • Human factor traps and solutions
  • Case studies with analysis using AAI Backcountry Avalanche Checklist

Sample Schedule:


  • Level 1 avalanche course
  • Minimum of one season between the level 1 & level 2 used to apply the tools and strategies learned on a level 1.

Recommended Reading

  • Staying Alive in Avalanche Terrain, Bruce Tremper
  • Snow, Weather and Avalanches: Observational Guidelines for Avalanche Programs in the United States (SWAG)


2016/2017 Course Dates


There are no scheduled courses at this time.