Avalanche Skills Training (AST) 1

Learn how to recognize and avoid avalanche hazards, evaluate terrain, avalanche rescue techniques and much more

2 Days | Grade/Difficulty
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From CAD $200.00
per person
View Dates and Prices
Meeting in North Vancouver

Avalanche Skills Training (AST) 1 Trip Overview

Avalanche Skills Training (AST) 1

Please note: prices shown below are for public trips, meaning other guests may be on the same trip. This trip will only run once 2 or more guests are booked for the selected date.
To book a private trip for 1 or more people, please contact us

More Info


Theory Topics:

  • Avalanche hazard recognition
  • Avalanche terminology
  • Avalanche mechanics
  • Mountain weather
  • Snowpack structure
  • Basic terrain evaluation
  • Equipment requirements

Practical Topics:

  • Terrain evaluation
  • Mountain hazard assessment
  • Safe route finding techniques
  • Snowpack analysis
  • Snow testing techniques
  • Transceiver searches
  • Rescue fundamentals


You are responsible for getting to and from the course location. Please make sure you arrive on time and ready to go.

Day 1
The first session will be in a classroom at a North Vancouver location which will be confirmed closer to the date of the course. We will start at 08:00am. The first day of the course includes both indoor and outdoor sessions so pack accordingly. The day will finish by 5 pm.

Day 2
This is the field session of the course. Location and logistics will be arranged during the first day of the course, but please plan on a 7:45 am start time and a finish time of 5 pm. Please plan to arrive 10-15 minutes early to the course sessions, to allow for traffic delays, poor road conditions, parking, etc. Each day will start promptly at the times indicated - latecomers will risk missing some of the course content and there will not be an option to cover the missed content during the course. At the end of your course, you are encouraged to discuss with your instructor the content that has been covered, and to have the instructor assess your level of knowledge.

Includes / Excludes

Price Includes

  • 2 days AST-1 course instruction
  • CAA certified instructor
  • AST-1 Certificate
  • Avalanche Manual "Backcountry Avalanche Awareness"
  • Avaluator V.2 Manual and decision making card
  • Course student handouts and reference materials
  • 20% off future Avalanche Skills Training courses with Outdoor Explore

Price Excludes

  • Tipping for the guide
  • Gear rentals
  • Transport to and from the course location
  • Food during the course

Additional Information


You will receive final meeting and location details for the class closer to the time of the course. Typically this class will start at 08:00am on Day of the course dates.

The field session on Day-2 is held in the backcountry of either Mt Seymour or Cypress Ski Resort. Occasionally, alternate locations may be used such as local mountains around Squamish/Whistler in the event of a low snow season. The Day-2 field session logistics and details will be discussed during the Day-1 class session.

Please make sure your vehicle is equipped with winter tyres! All practical courses will be conducted in areas requiring proper winter tyres with plenty of tread. Expect to be driving on snow at higher elevations.

IMPORTANT - the specific meeting locations may vary from one course date to another, please ensure you confirm the correct location for your course date!

Pre Requisites

No previous avalanche training is required.
If coming on skis/snowboard, you should have a basic/intermediate level of experience with all necessary equipment, adjusted and ready to go.
An average level of fitness is beneficial.


You are required to bring the following equipment on both days of the course:

  • Avalanche beacon
  • Collapsible avalanche shovel
  • Avalanche probe
  • Warm clothes (be prepared to be in the cold for most of the day)
  • Waterproof shell top and bottom
  • Warm hat and gloves
  • Warm and waterproof boots
  • Lunch, snacks and water
  • Notepad and pens

Touring skis, snowboard, snowshoes etc. are only required for day 2. If on skis/splitboard, please bring proper touring equipment with climbing skins sized correctly and bindings adjusted to your boots.

Please Note: we will conduct the course regardless of conditions, meaning you may be learning in cold temperatures or bad weather. Please bring appropriate clothing!


All Instructors on our avalanche courses are active members of the CAA (Canadian Avalanche Association) and hold a Level I or Level II professional certification with the CAA.

All Outdoor Explore staff have advanced 1st aid training as well as guiding qualifications and a wealth of experience in mountainous and avalanche terrain. Outdoor Explore CAA instructors are dedicated to teaching you the skills needed to stay safe in avalanche terrain through professionally run courses.

What our customers say about Outdoor Explore guided adventures
Always good fun out with the Outdoor Explore team. First time out with these guys I was worried I wouldn't be able to keep up, but they helped make me feel comfortable and safe the whole time. Solid, confident, and proficient guides. Amazing way to visit the outdoors, seeing places that would be hard to access alone....
David - Canada

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* This trip will only run once 2 or more participants have registered. Click here to enquire about private bookings.


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