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BAC

Four Day Backcountry Avalanche Course (BAC)

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Course Framework

OVERVIEW:

This is the official MSC-endorsed certified Backcountry Avalanche Course (BAC).  Aimed at experienced tourers, the course will provide a hands-on approach to alpine travel and snow assessment. The Course is run by Anna Keeling Guiding and based at Cheeseman Ski Area, staying at Snowline Lodge.

Who is it for?  It is designed for individuals who spend time travelling in an alpine environment, outside of ski area boundaries who are wanting to increase their knowledge and decision making capabilities. 

The course will suit those who have a basic understanding of avalanche phenomena and spend time travelling in alpine terrain as part of tramping trips, hunting, mountaineering, skiing, snowboarding or other outdoor experiences.  This course is not for walkers however - everyone must be on skis or snowboards and must be of an intermediate or better standard in all snow conditions.  You will be out all day, you will be hiking on skins.  Seewww.annakeelingguiding.co.nz/faq for information on fitness, ski ability, and gear hire.

Skills covered:  

  • Planning and preparation using maps and guidebooks
  • Weather forecasts and the avalanche advisory 
  • Avalanche terrain identification and route finding 
  • Snow profiles and stability tests on-the-go 
  • Companion rescue skills and emergencies
  • Human factors and heuristic traps

There will be a mix of indoor and outdoor learning with a major focus on hands-on practice in the field.

Date: Rescheduled to Sept 30-Oct 3

Venue:  The course is taught in uncontrolled terrain (outside of a ski area boundary) of low to moderate-angle where rope protection is not required for safety. There may be some exposure to heights. It is delivered above the bush line in a snow-covered environment.

Course cost includes:

  • Three nights accommodation at Snowline lodge, with Dinner, Breakfast and Lunch*.
  • One ride lift access each day.
  • Four days instruction with Anna Keeling Guiding.
  • BAC materials - Text book, workbook and certificates.
  • Certified transceiver test

*please bring lunch on the first day.

What to Bring: a full list of what to bring will be sent out as part of course registration. 

COURSE PREREQUISITES:

Participants must:

  • Be 16 years of age (or 14 if accompanied by a guardian)
  • Have a fitness level appropriate to travel safely for eight hours in alpine terrain and conditions
  • Be physically capable of walking, skiing or snowboarding in a variety of snow conditions on moderate-angled terrain.
  • Have attended an MSC Avalanche Awareness course or have a similar level of knowledge.
  • Have completed the online training and quiz at www.avalanche.net.nz/Education/

LEARNING OUTCOMES:

On completion, the participant will have a theoretical and working knowledge of:

  • Avalanche characteristics
  • Snowpack factors (layers, crystal ID, basic metamorphosis) and stability tests
  • Avalanche terrain identification and route-finding
  • Human factors in decision-making
  • Group travel in avalanche terrain
  • Small-party search and rescue.

ASSESSMENT:

This course includes a formal assessment of avalanche rescue skills. On successful completion of a transceiver test, a Certificate of Competence is issued by the provider. Participants also receive a Certificate of Attendance.

INSTRUCTOR QUALIFICATIONS:

This course is taught by NZMGA Ski guides with a minimum qualification of MSC Avalanche 2 (or equivalent), who hold a current outdoor first aid certificate.

DURATION:

An online pre-course training package, three-hour theory evening and four-day field training.

CANCELLATION POLICY:

-­ Full refund less 15% deposit (admin fee) if you cancel more than 21 days prior to start.
-­ No refund if you cancel 21 days or less prior to start.
-­ If the course is postponed due to weather conditions on day one, a refund less 15%.

Please note: Chill will confirm in the week prior to the course whether the course is on as scheduled or not. If the course is cancelled, due to weather conditions or not enough participants, you can either apply for a refund or book for another course later in the season.

Our Cancellation Policies are subject to change, please contact us if you have any questions by emailing explore@chillout.nz or phone us on 03 365 6530.

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