Overview:

In the past the AIARE 2 was designed to be an entry level professional course. New for 2017, the redesigned AIARE 2 is designed specifically to meet the needs of advanced recreational students who have taken an AIARE 1 and Avalanche Rescue Class.

The AIARE 2 is a three-day/24-hour course that provides backcountry travelers an opportunity to advance their decision making skills in more complicated situations such as being a leader within a small travel group, traveling in more complicated terrain, and/or developing a travel plan where online resources are scarce.

The AIARE 2 builds on the introductory avalanche hazard management model introduced in the AIARE 1 and adds to it the evaluation of critical hazard assessment factors. Students will describe and discuss weather, snowpack and avalanche processes, and identify how these processes relate to observations and travel within avalanche terrain.

Sample Itinerary:

Day 1:

8:00 – Instructor and Student Introductions, Course Objectives, Course Itinerary and Logistics, Liability Release Forms

8:30 – AIARE 1 Review

9:45 – Case Study

10:30 – Mountain Weather

11:00 – Layering and the Mountain Snowpack

11:45 – Trip Planning Review

12:30 – Lunch

1:30 – Travel to trailhead and arrive at parking lots

1:45 – Review of Seasonal Snowpack; Craftsmanship, Relevancy, and Verification of Snow Observations; Snowpack Tests in the Field

4:30 – Travel back to classroom; Course close

Day 2:

8:00 – Avalanche Bulletin Review

8:30 – Avalanche Formation and Release

9:30 – Risk Management in Small Groups

10:00 – Gathering Information & Observations over Terrain

11:00 – Lunch; Travel to trailhead and arrive at parking lots

12:30 – Snow Profile (Site selection; Layer ID; Hardness Scale; Grain ID; Tests); Snowpack Structure; Interpreting Weather Data, Snow Surface Conditions, and Snow Profiles; Metamorphism, Sintering and Bonding, Persistent Weak Layers / Facets, NSF, NCF, Surface Hoar

4:30 – Travel back to classroom; Course close

Day 3:

8:00 – Avalanche Bulletin Review

8:30 – Field Risk Management

9:00 – Communicating Observations to our group, other travelers, and local experts

9:30 – Travel to trailhead and arrive at parking lots

9:45 – Group Tour; Verify Stability Forecast; Group Management / Terrain Selection / Travel Techniques

4:00 – Tour Debief

5:00 – Course close

Meeting location:

Varies by Course (please consult our office to confirm):

Colorado Mountain School
341 Moraine Avenue
Estes Park, CO 80517

-or-

Fall River Village
200 Filbey Ct
Estes Park, CO 80517

-or-

Ouray, CO

Details:

Reasons Why CMS AIARE Courses Are Worth It!

  • CMS is the countries largest AIARE Provider for a reason!
  • Our Instructors are educators, not just minimally qualified instructors
  • We spend the majority of the course in the mountains, not inside
  • We provide valuable pre-course material to help you prepare
  • Our Instructors are career guides, with decades of personal experience
  • Our Instructors are AMGA Ski Guide trained or Certified
  • We have a full-time office staff to answer all of your questions
  • We supply our students with their own slope meter
  • Variety of course offerings to meet our guests scheduling needs. Huts (Berthoud), Splits, CMS, Summit, Aspen L2’s
  • Get avalanche training in the ski venue you ski in locally.
  • Fully sponsored by industry leaders Dynafit, Scarpa, Backcountry Access
  • Full snow safety rental fleet
  • Neptune Mountaineering ski shop support with rentals of ski equipment.

Lodging:

With a sixteen-bed lodge available, Colorado Mountain School provides students the opportunity to spend their entire stay in Estes Park without the hassle of commuting. Our lodge is conveniently located in downtown Estes Park and features a full kitchen, WiFi and hot showers. Reserve a bed now for just $40 per night (plus tax).

Notes:

All of our courses can be run as custom outings.  If your group is interested in a custom avalanche training course, please call us at 720-387-8944.

All Upcoming Dates and Locations:

  • December 27, 2019 - December 29, 2019 - AIARE 2 Three-Day Course - Estes Park, Colorado
  • January 18, 2020 - January 20, 2020 - AIARE 2 Three-Day Course - Estes Park, Colorado
  • February 15, 2020 - February 17, 2020 - AIARE 2 Three-Day Course - Estes Park, Colorado
  • March 27, 2020 - March 29, 2020 - AIARE 2 Three-Day Course - Estes Park, Colorado

Student learning outcomes:

  • Differentiate where specific avalanche hazards exist within the landscape and identify avalanche terrain where consequences may be more severe.
  • Use and interpret weather, snow, and avalanche observations to locate appropriate terrain prior to entering and while in the field.
  • Demonstrate leadership skills within a small team that include facilitating small group discussion, promoting appropriate terrain selection, and utilizing simple risk management strategies.
  • Implement a basic forecasting framework that can be used in conjunction with and in the absences of local supporting avalanche information.
  • Apply a routine to foster TEAMWORK while planning for and travelling in avalanche terrain.
  • PREPARE for backcountry travel with seasonal and daily routines.
  • Create a PLAN to manage a group travelling in avalanche terrain.
  • Apply the RIDE SAFELY checklists to promote situational awareness, to foster group communication, and to use terrain to reduce risk.
  • Review decisions and the decision-making process to intentionally develop experience through a daily DEBRIEF.
  • Practice Avalanche Rescue and effectively use personal avalanche rescue equipment.
  • Develop and use a life-long learning plan.

Prerequisites:

-AIARE 1 Course or equivalent Level 1 training is required.
AIARE Avalanche Rescue Course
-Participants must be on an AT setup, Tele setup, or splitboard.
-Participants must know how to skin, ski hard blues/blacks at the resort, and ski in powder.

Preparation:

Who Should Take this Course:
The AIARE 2 is a three-day course for those who have taken an AIARE 1 and Avalanche Rescue, and it is suggested that you have had at least a year of backcountry travel experience, though it is not required. The AIARE 2 provides backcountry travelers the opportunity to advance their avalanche knowledge and decision making skills in new terrain and/or mountain ranges.

Time:

8am-5pm

Duration:

3 Days

Maximum Ratio:

6:1

Price Includes:

Price Excludes:

  • Food
  • Transportation
  • Lodging
  • Clothing, backpack and non-technical personal items
  • Skiing Equipment (Recommend Neptune Mountaineering)
  • Park Entrance Fees (where applicable)
  • Rescue Insurance
  • Trip Insurance
  • Gratuity
  • Misc. Charges
    • Rescue Fees
    • Helicopter Fees
    • Trip Insurance
  • Expenses due to unforeseen circumstances beyond the control of Colorado Mountain School
Item Description Quantity Example Purchase At Rent At Equipment Type
Avalanche Beacon

Modern, digital, three-antennae beacon with fresh batteries.

1

BCA Tracker 2 or 3

 

Neptune Mountaineering

Colorado Mountain School; Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Avalanche Probe

Collapsable metal or carbon rod used to probe avalanche debris while attempting to strike a buried target.

1

BCA Stealth 300

Neptune Mountaineering

Colorado Mountain School; Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Avalanche Rescue Shovel

Ski specific shovel used to dig pits and avalanche rescue. A metal blade is mandatory.

1

BCA B1 Ext

Neptune Mountaineering

Colorado Mountain School; Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Backpack: 20-40 liter

Packs smaller than this tend not to be able to carry the necessary amount of equipment and clothing. Large backpacking packs are acceptable, depending on the climb.

1

CAMP M3 30L

Neptune Mountaineering

Colorado Mountain School

Equipment
Baselayer Bottoms

Synthetic or Merino Wool; Lightweight or mid-weight are recommended.

1

Men: Rab Forge Leggings
Women: Rab Forge Leggings

Rab

Clothing
Beanie or Fleece Hat

Should cover the ears and fit under a helmet. Hats with fluff balls on top do not fit under helmets.

1

Rab Logo Beanie

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Climbing Skins

Nylon or mohair. Trimmed and adjusted to fit your skis or splitboard ahead of time.

1

Dynafit Speedskin

Neptune Mountaineering

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Compass

Used for navigation and orientation. A compass with adjustable declination is preferrable.

1

Silva Ranger CLQ

Neptune Mountaineering

Optional
First Aid Kit

Your guide will have an emergency First Aid Kit. You should bring a small kit including blister prevention and care products such as a role of athletic tape and Moleskin. Your kit should also contain a few Band-aids, some Tylenol and Ibuprofen.

1

Neptune Mountaineering

Optional
Food

Proper lunches that are prepared ahead of time are recommended (sandwich, burrito, leftover pizza, etc), along with an assortment of snack bars, gels, or trail mixes. Feeze-dried meals are acceptable on overnight trips, but not day trips.

1

Made in Nature, Thrive Tribe

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Goggles

Protect your eyes and face from wind and sun burn.

1

Julbo Airflux

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Hardshell Pants

These should be non-insulated pants with ankle cuffs wide enough to fit over your ski or ride boots.

1

Men: Rab Sharp Edge Pants
Women: Rab Women's Sharp Edge Pants

Rab Stores

Clothing
Headlamp

Load with fresh batteries. Critical for hiking before sunrise and great to have in the pack in case you are caught out after dark.

1

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Heavyweight Waterproof Glove

This glove comes out when the winter going gets cold and wet or at higher altitudes.

1

RAB Storm Glove

Rab Store

Clothing
Hot Drinks

Coffee, tea, hot cocoa are great for warming up when it's cold outside.

1

Cusa Tea; Alpine Start Coffee

Neptune Mountaineering

Optional
Laptop

Useful for navigation courses, including hiking and ski tour planning.

1 Optional
Lightweight Baselayer Top

Synthetic or Merino Wool; Worn against the skin and is considered a "wicking" layer that facilitates the movement of moisture away from the skin and through the layers. Hooded base layers add extra versatility.

2

Men: Rab Forge LS Tee
Women: Rab Force LS Tee

Rab Store

Clothing
Lightweight Gloves

Synthetic; Thin gloves used when hiking the early morning approach. Belay gloves can suffice if full-fingered.

1

RAB Power Stretch Pro

Rab Store

Clothing
Lip ScreenSPF 15 or higher.

Non-SPF rated lip balms can actually increase your chances of getting burned.

1

Rocky Mountain Sunscreen Lip Balm

Neptune Mountaineering

Optional
Mechanical Pencil

Great for taking notes in the field.

1 Optional
Midweight Baselayer Top

Synthetic or Merino Wool; Adds extra warmth and protection from the cold and wind without creating a moisture barrier as a jacket would. Having at least one base layer that is hooded adds versatility, protecting the neck and ears from cold winds.

1

Men: Rab Nucleus Hoody
Women: Rab Nucleus Hoody

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Midweight Softshell Glove

This is the workhorse glove and is most often worn on warmer days when mountaineering. Softshell gloves are water-resistant and durable. They often have leather palms and fingers.

1

RAB Guide2 GTX Glove

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Neck Gaiter

"Buffs" are quite versatile in their uses. They can be used as light beanies, neck warmers, and can offer face protection from the cold wind or sun.

1

CMS Neck Gaiter

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Personal Toilet Kit

At minimum, bring a small Ziploc with toilet paper. Consider bringing a travel sized package of hand-wipes. Idealy, purchase, or for free from the RMNP Backcountry office, bring a "Rest Stop." The Rest Stop, known as "Blue Bags" in the Pacific Northwest, or the "Wag Bag" in other areas, are poop-in-a-bag systems that include toilet paper and a sanitizing hand wipe.

1

Neptune Mountaineering

Optional
Ski Helmet

This item is recommended but not required. We will be skiing in the trees, and in snow conditions where rocks, stumps, and downded logs are present.

1

Camp Speed Comp

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Ski or Snowboard Boots

Footwear should be appropriate to mode of travel i.e. ski, snowboard, or insulated winter boots for snowshoes. For snowshoers, a boot such as the Scarpa Mont Blanc is the minimum level of boot required. Ski Boots should have a walk mode.

1

Scarpa Maestrale RS

Neptune Mountaineering

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Ski or Trekking Poles

Two poles, with powder baskets, are required for all skiers, splitboarders, and snowshoers. It is ideal if poles are ski-specific and collapse small enough to fit onto a pack when climbing.

1

BCA Scepter

Neptune Mountaineering

Colorado Mountain School; Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Ski Straps

18" Rubber or velcro straps to connect skis when attaching them to a pack. Also useful for a variety of in-the-field equipment repairs.

2

BCA Ski Strap

Neptune Mountaineering

Optional
Skis or Snowboard

Skis should have touring bindings; lightweight tech bindings are ideal. Splitboards are ideal for snowboarders. Snowboarders using resort snowboards will need to have snowshoes and poles.

1

Dynafit Beast 98; Dynafit ST Radical 100

Neptune Mountaineering

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Slope Meter (Inclinometer)

Used to measure slope angle, this tool is a standard equipment item for any backcountry traveler in avalanche terrain.

1

BCA Slope Meter

Neptune Mountaineering

Optional
Smart Phone App

There are a plethora of apps that assist in navigation. These apps use your phone's GPS functions and can work in the mountains offline.

1

Avanet; Gaia Maps; Topo Maps

Optional
Smartphone

Great for taking photos and videos. Smartphone batteries tend to shut down in freezing temps - keep your phone in a warm inner layer. A tether is ideal in the mountains to protet against dropping your phone.

1 Optional
Snow Saw

For cutting columns during snowpack analysis

1

BCA 35cm Snow  Saw

Neptune Mountaineering

Optional
Snow Study Kit

Crystal card, magnifying lens, thermometers, 2 meter ruler

1

BCA Snow Study Kit

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Snowshoes

Great for walking over snow. Snowshoes work by distributing the weight of the person over a larger area so that the foot does not sink (posthole) into the snow.

1

MSR

Neptune Mountaineering

Colorado Mountain School

Equipment
Softshell and Fleece Jacket

Water-resistant, windproof, yet it "breaths," which means it allows moisture to move through. Hoods are ideal. There are multiple thicknesses of Softshell jackets. A lightweight or medium-weight jacket is preferred. Fleece jackets are acceptable.

1

Men: Rab Salvo Jacket
Women: Rab Salvo Jacket

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Sports Bra

Provides support and allows for full range of motion

1

North Face Beyond the Wall

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Sun Hat

A billed hat to keep the sun at bay during the approach and descent.

1

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Sunglasses

"Wrap-Around" style sunglasses with 100% UV Protection.

1

Julbo Shield

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
SunscreenSPF 30 or higher.

Travel size.

1

Rocky Mountain Sunscreen SPF 50

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Synthetic or Down Puffy Jacket

Fits over all other layers and is worn at breaks and on really cold days. Synthetic puffies are more durable, are easily laundered, and dry out quickly if wet. Down puffies are lighter weight, pack smaller, and provide exceptional warmth, but once wet, they stay wet.

1

Men: Rab Electron Jacket
Women: Rab Electron Jacket

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Synthetic or Merino Wool Socks

Wool and synthetic blends are great for long days on the trail. "Ski" and "Snowboard" socks are especially useful when warmth is desired.

2

Point 6 Hiking Light Crew

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing
Thermos

Many ice climbers prefer to bring a thermos of hot water or soup instead of one of their water bottles.

1

Neptune Mountaineering

Optional
Toe Warmers and Hand Heaters

Help keep you warm on particularly cold days.

1

Neptune Mountaineering

Optional
Watch with Altimiter

An altimeter is very useful in gauging progression of altitude gain or loss when climbing, and especially when visibility is decreased due to weather. Many Altimeter watches have compasses or GPS tracking functions.

1

Suunto Vector; Suunto Core

Neptune Mountaineering

Optional
Water Bottles

1 liter bottles are the standard. Bladders such as Camelbacks and Platypus are acceptable for above freezing temps, but only in conjunction with another bottle. Bladders are not acceptable during sub freezing temps. Sports drinks are also acceptable.

2

Nalgene, Hydro Flask

Neptune Mountaineering

Equipment
Waterproof Shell Jacket

Non-insulated, Gore-Tex, Dermizax, Event, or other waterproofing system is required. Mostly, this jacket sits in the bottom of your pack and comes out when the weather gets nasty with precipitation. This jacket should fit over all other layers.

1

Men: RAB Ladakh GTX Jacket
Women: RAB Women's Kangri GRX Jacket

Neptune Mountaineering

Clothing

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