The Alpine Club of Canada

Winter Crevasse Rescue

Learn the Skills Needed to Travel Across Glaciers Safely and Independently

If you’re planning on venturing onto a glacier this winter, it is vital that you practice or refresh your crevasse rescue skills. And who better do it with than Canada’s national mountaineering organization?

Our Winter 2024 offerings are led by our highly experienced Lead Winter Guide, Doug Latimer. Doug is currently authoring an e-book on the subject (to be included in your course fee if completed in time) and will teach all of the skills necessary to maximize safety skiing across glaciated terrain and deal with a crevasse fall scenario.

The course will start with an evening session the Thursday before your field day where you will go over gear, take a look at systems to understand how they work and review basic knots. The Saturday will be the field day where you will dive into hands on learning at a climbing crag, like Rundle Rock. Here you will set up different systems and practice setting up anchors. On the final field day, the group will have the opportunity to ski to a glacial environment to practice the systems and apply the skills learned in a realistic setting.

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November 25TH-26TH 2023

December 30TH-31ST 2023

Price: $375+ TAX

Before registering, please review our Waivers and Liability page.


Please try to register online before calling. If you are having issues please try to have your emergency contact information and course questionnaire filled out before calling.

OR Call: (403)-678-3200 ext 213

Rockfall and icefall
  • Rockfall and icefall can be caused by natural forces, or by people travelling through the terrain (Climbing/Scrambling/Hiking)
    What are the risks
  • Impact from a falling rock or ice can result in injury or death and can also damage equipment such as ropes.
    Hazard Mitigation
  • Our ACMG certified guides have experience and training to manage this risk
  • Your guide will ask you to put on a helmet when in the mountains

  • Avalanches can occur in the terrain you will be entering. Caused by natural forces, or by people travelling through the terrain
    What are the risks
  • Anyone caught in a avalanche is at risk of personal injury, death, and or property damage or loss
    Hazard Mitigation
  • Our ACMG certified guides have experience and training to manage this risk
  • Daily risk assessment processes
  • Guest training if avalanches are a risk on your trip

  • Cornices
  • Crevasses
  • Trees, tree wells, and tree stumps
  • Creeks
  • Rocks and Boulders
  • Variable and difficult walking terrain
  • Impact or collision with other persons or objects
  • Encounters with domestic or wild animals
  • Contact with poisonous flora or fauna
  • Loss of balance or control
  • Slips, trips, and falls
    Hazard Mitigation
  • Our ACMG certified guides have experience and training to manage this risk
  • Radios and/or other communication devices

Falls and belaying
  • Mountaineering and ice climbing present the risk of falling from the wall causing the climber to collide with the wall or ground
  • There is also the risk of a belay failure, which can contribute to a ground fall
    Hazard Mitigation
  • Your guide will review best belay practices with you or will control the belay

Communication, rescue, and medical treatment
  • Communication can be difficult and in the event of an accident rescue and treatment may not be available
  • Adverse weather may also delay the arrival of treatment or transportation out of the field,
  • Alpine weather conditions can be extreme and change rapidly without warning making travel by helicopter, snowmobile, snowcat, dangerous
  • If an injury occurs in challenging terrain movement to an evacuation point may be slow
    Hazard Mitigation
  • Your guide is trained in both backcountry first-aid and rescue techniques
  • Emergency response plans
  • Satellite communication tools

  • Slips trips and falls indoor or outdoor
  • Infectious disease contracted via direct or indirect contact, including but not limited to influenza or Covid-19
  • Equipment failure
  • Negligence of other persons, including other guests
  • Negligence of the guide Including failure to to take reasonable steps to safeguard or protect you from or warn you of risk, dangers, hazards, oh participating in ACC activities
    Hazard Mitigation
  • Your guide is trained in both backcountry first-aid and rescue techniques
  • Satellite communication tools

Skills you’ll learn on this course include

  • Basic knots
  • Essentials climbing knots (prusik, clove hitch, munter-mule-overhand, double fisherman’s, girth hitch)
  • Ascending & descending the rope
  • Mechanical advantage: setting up a haul system
  • Glacier travel basics (where & why crevasses form)
  • Roped & un-roped skiing and hiking 
  • Transferring load
  • Types of snow anchors
  • Review of crevasse rescue steps
  • Arresting a crevasse fall
  • Transferring load to an anchor
  • Hands-on practice of setting up and executing hauling systems
  • Special scenarios: 2-person rescue, un-roped fall into crevasse 

Day 1 (Online evening session)

  • You will get instructions 2 weeks ahead to join our online platform. Evening sessions will start at 6 pm MST and run until 9pm MST.
  • The evening session will go over gear, knots and diagrams of the systems you will be creating
  • Your guide will also discuss the use of commercially-available crevasse rescue equipment (pulleys and ready-made systems) and provide opportunity to practice with these.
  • If you have any questions about gear you currently own this is a great time to ask about it.

Day 2

  • Participants will meet at the trailhead at 9 am MST.
  • Here, you will go over how to descend and ascend a rope, and learn how to set up a hauling system.
  • You will have an opportunity to practice with the use of commercially-available crevasse rescue equipment (pulleys and ready-made systems) that was shown during the online session.
  • Other topics to be taught include glacier travel basics, roped and unroped skiing/walking, types of anchors, and review the different steps to a crevasse rescue
  • This field day will let you practice your new skills in a realistic outdoor environment. You will be using live loads (ie.. you!) to test your new skills (don’t worry we will have a safety attached just in case). Be sure to bring a comfy harness to sit in while your partner takes their turn “rescuing” you.

Day 3

  • The meeting time and location will depend on conditions and the guide’s discretion. One location the group may visit is the toe of the Victoria Glacier near Lake Louise.
  • Here, you will practice the systems and skills learned from the previous sessions in a realistic, glacier environment. 
  • If time permits you’ll also get a chance to practice advanced crevasse rescue scenarios, including a 2-person rescue and an unroped fall into a crevasse. 
  • The group will return to the parking area by 4 PM (MST) to allow for everyone enough time to make it home safety.


This camp is introductory, however, you will get more out of this course if you know basic climbing knots and are familiar with glacier gear.



Food is not provided as part of the course. Please bring along a packed lunch and some snacks for your field days.


As this course is offered out of the ACC Clubhouse in Canmore, we invite all out-of-town participants to stay with us. Located on a high bench overlooking the Three Sisters, Ha Ling and Mount Rundle, the ACC Clubhouse hostel is the perfect place to relax while completing your Crevasse Rescue Course. You can reserve a room for the night between your classroom day and field day upon reservation. Or if you need to stay longer, call our reservations team on 403 678 3200 ext. 300. 

For full details on the Canmore Clubhouse accommodation click here.


Our on-staff ACC guide, Doug Latimer, oversees our crevasse rescue program. Doug has almost 20 years of experience in teaching instructional courses and is currently writing his own e-book on crevasse rescue which we hope to include with the course as soon as it is available. We are extremely excited to have him on board for another season after rave reviews in his past years working with us.

We want to provide the best possible learning experience and give you maximum opportunity to ask questions. So, for our field days, we bring in an extra guide/instructor where necessary to keep participant-to-guide ratios below a maximum of 6:1.  

The ACC hires guides certified by the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides (ACMG). Visit the ACMG website to learn more about what they do!





If you don’t have everything on the gear list and aren’t ready to invest in your own, there are many awesome local businesses that rent out all of the equipment you will need. Be sure to reserve your rentals ahead of time to make sure everything you need is available for you when you need it.

  • Coming from the Bow Valley? Check out GearUp in Canmore. ACC members get 10% off all gear rentals!
  • Coming from Calgary? We recommend renting your gear from MEC, the University of Calgary Outdoors Center, or the Norseman.
  • Coming from the Revelstoke? Give Revelstoke Powder Rentals a try.

Doug Latimer

Doug has 20+ years of guiding experience behind him as an ACMG ski guide and an ACMG apprentice rock guide. As well as his private guiding he has spent a number of years working for the UoC where he taught a range of instructional programs in avalanche training, crevasse rescue and backcountry ski and ski mountaineering. He also somehow finds time to run a multimedia production company! On top of all that, we are lucky to have Doug as our lead winter guide, where he shares his fantastic enthusiasm and extensive knowledge throughout our winter programs.

Doug Latimer

We sell Tugo® Travel Insurance suitable for both ACC Adventures and personal trips:


  • 2 days of professional guiding at max 6:1 ratios by certified ACMG guides
  • 1 evening online session
  • All Group Gear


  • Transportation to and from the field location on Day 2 and 3
  • Accommodation
  • Meals and Lunches
  • Personal gear (see gear list)


  • Local Knowledge – based out of Canmore, AB, we know the Rockies region and the best local caterers, guides and porters
  • Dedicated resources – full-time office staff, ACMG guides and group equipment on-hand to ensure your trip runs smoothly
  • Not-for-profit – any money we make on camps and courses is reinvested into providing services for our members and the mountain community