AST-2: Rogers Pass

The AST 1 course is part of the ACC's annual Powder Program which is sponsored by our partner Smartwool. Smartwool's support allows us to keep costs of our Powder Program camps and courses low as well as provide Smartwool product to all of the program's participants. We thank them for their support.

Head further into the backcountry with Canada’s intermediate-level recreational Avalanche Safety Training 2

NEW for 2018: The Wheeler hut-based AST-2 offers you four days of focused, field-based immersion in backcountry travel and snowpack evaluation techniques. This course is intended for the advanced backcountry user who wants to hone their avalanche evaluation skills.


The course will start at 8AM at a classroom location in Revelstoke. After a short, 4-hour classroom session to review the principles covered in your AST-1, review the day’s avalanche bulletin, objectives, and weather forecast, and a gear check and review of the guide’s pack, you will carpool to Roger’s Pass, and skin to the Wheeler hut.


The next three days will allow you to take advantage of the variety of terrain right outside your doorstep. While the guide will cover the principles of the AST-2 course, there will be a fair bit of flexibility based on participants’ goals and questions. Topics covered will include a discussion of how to apply the avalanche bulletin and ATES to a local scale, safe travel techniques for specific types of terrain, and the advantages and disadvantages of various tests to evaluate local snow stability. The indoor sessions will cover the AST-2 curriculum, but will also be informal Q-&-A sessions with your guide where you can discuss experiences and issues from your personal backcountry trips. You will be involved in choosing the day’s objective based on the avalanche forecast, weather conditions, and time constraints.

More information and info pack to follow soon!

Camp Itinerary: Day 1

Classroom day. Participants meet at 8:30am in the Heritage Room at the ACC’s Canmore Clubhouse

  • Review of the basic principles of avalanche phenomena
  • Terrain photo study – How to recognize avalanche terrain & choosing routes
  • Accessing public avalanche forecast – Where to find them and their strengths and limitations
  • Snowpack metamorphism – what actually drives change in the snowpack
  • Snowpack layering, crystal shapes, temperature gradients
  • Emergency response review
  • Trip planning considerations
  • Identifying hazards
  • Route plans
  • Emergency contacts
  • Timings & turnaround times
  • Introduce the principles of companion rescue with multiple burials
  • Review of our “Guide’s Pack” & discussion about appropriate gear selection for avalanche terrain
  • Discussion and route planning for the objective for Day 2.

Camp Itinerary: Days 2 - 4

Meeting time and objectives TBD

  • Review of Transceiver Checks – Range and Transmit Function Checks
  • How to use Avalanche & Weather Forecasts in your decision making
  • Use of the AVALUATOR as a travel tool
  • Hazard Identification and Mitigation
  • Identifying Areas of Increased Hazard
  • Good Travel Habits
  • Group Management & Decision Making
  • Snowpack Observations & Snow Stability Analysis
  • Review the Procedure for a Compression Test
  • Introduce new snow stability tests and discuss when to use them
  • Extended Column Tests
  • Propagation Saw Tests
  • Deep Tap Tests
  • Companion Rescue – Dealing with multiple burial situations


  • January 7-10, 2018
  • March 25-28, 2018

  • $895 + Tax / Person
Register Now

Gear, Food & Lodging

  • ACMG professional guiding throughout the course
  • Pre-trip gear and planning advice
  • Accommodation
  • ACC course materials
  • Completion certification at the end of the course
  • Transportation to and from the field locations – participants will be expected to use their own vehicles and carpool
  • All meals for the course
  • National Parks vehicle pass
  • Personal gear (please bring your own avalanche beacon, probe, shovel, snowshoes, ski touring or splitboard set up, packed lunch, warm clothes and notebook and pencil)

Photo by Brad Hurkett
All work and no play

Level of Difficulty: Entry Level

This course is meant for experienced backcountry travelers looking to update their snowpack evaluation skills. The AST-1 is a required prerequisite for this course. Participants must also have extensive personal experience in the backcountry ( at a minimum, 15+ days), be very familiar with their gear, and be intermediate-advanced skiers and riders. You must already know the basics of safe travel in avalanche terrain, be familiar with your transciever, and be confident finding and interpreting the avalanche bulletin. If you are new to backcountry skiing or snowboarding, please consider our Canmore-based AST-2 .

AST 2 Rogers Pass Staff