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Silverton Avalanche School gets digging
From Silverton Standard, the place where you can write!
Posted on January 13 2011, 2:36pm by Mark Esper in Local News category
Sessions start this weekend; free movie Friday, and speaker on Saturday at Town Hall
Silverton Avalanche School is offering its first session of the year Friday through Sunday, Jan. 14-16, with a Level I course at Kendall Mountain Recreation Area.
Avalanche school director Jim Donovan said this weekend’s session is fully booked, with 36 students signed up.
“The following two Level I sessions still have room,” Donovan said. Those sessions are scheduled for Jan. 21-23, and Jan. 28-30.
On Friday night, Jan. 14, the avalanche school will offer a free movie at Town Hall — “A Dozen More Turns” — an avalanche awareness film, starting at 7 p.m. The public is welcome.
On Saturday, Jan. 15, the avalanche school will present Andrew McLean speaking on “Alaska Family Values: Ski Mountaineering Three Iconic Mountains.”
McLean has pursued ski mountaineering objectives around the world and in 2008 he completed a project to ski on all seven continents in a quest to find the best backcountry skiing on earth. 
The event starts at 7 p.m. at Town Hall. Admission is $2 and includes sponsor giveaways.
Another Level I course is scheduled for Jan. 21-23.
“Silverton Avalanche School’s Level I Course continues to be the ideal choice for backcountry travelers, providing the right combination of class time and true backcountry experience,” Donovan said.
“People are coming from all over the country,” Donovan said “We have more Front Range people this year, and we’ve got people coming from all over the place.”
Donovan said the school will keep the student-teacher ratio at 6-1 for the field sessions.
The comprehensive curriculum includes:
• Terrain Evaluation
• Safe Travel Protocols
• Route Finding
• Tour Preparation
• Decision Making
• Avalanche Equipment
• Companion Rescue
• Human Factors
• Mountain Weather
• Snowpack Development
• Recognizing Instabilities in the Snowpack
• Using Observations and Tests
• Simple Snow Pit Profiles
• How to Apply the Current Avalanche Bulletin to Tour Planning
Since 1962 the Silverton Avalanche School has educated skiers, snowboarders, snowmobilers, ski patrollers, search and rescue personnel, and law enforcement officers how to stay safe in avalanche terrain. SAS is a not-for-profit organization. Proceeds benefit San Juan County Search & Rescue.
For more information call (970) 903-7039 or e-mail info@avyschool.org
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