Known for placing great emphasis on outdoor recreation, Squamish is a welcoming destination with enough variety to keep the most versatile of thrill-seekers engaged at all times. Its captivating nature has something in store for everyone, and the snow-blanketed towering peaks with acres of deep powder and pristine slopes are ideal for anyone keen on backcountry skiing. However, off-piste skiing and the formidable nature around you can be treacherous, and things can go south in the blink of an eye. If an avalanche strikes while you’re on the slopes, the environment around you becomes perilous. Avoid all of this and hire an expert guide to help you master the fundamental avalanche safety skills. You’ll acquire both theoretical knowledge in a classroom setting and then put all of it to use in Squamish’s marvelous backcountry. Become a safer and more confident skier and enjoy some phenomenal vistas along the way!

  • Learn the fundamental avalanche skills amid towering powdery peaks

  • Squamish’s backcountry is known for broad terrain and teems with steeps and alpine bowls

  • The perfect combo of classroom theory and practical application in splendid backcountry

Choose itinerary

Group AST Level 1 Course
Sold out
3-Day Hybrid AST Level 1 Course
Available upon request
Private AST Level 1 Course
Apr 03 onwards
Group AST 1+ Level 1 Course
Available upon request
AST Refresher Course
Available upon request

Meet your guides

Monte Johnston
Monte Johnston
ACMG Ski Guide, ACMG Apprentice Alpine and Rock Guide
ACMG Ski Guide, ACMG Apprentice Alpine and Rock Guide
Monte is a ACMG Ski Guide, ACMG Apprentice Alpine and Rock guide based out of Squamish BC. He’s climbed and skied all over the world but he settled in BC because of the easy access to amazing climbing and skiing.
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Black Sheep Adventure Sports
Black Sheep Adventure Sports
Black Sheep Adventure Sports
ACMG Certified Rock, Alpine & Ski Guides
ACMG Certified Rock, Alpine & Ski Guides
Black Sheep Adventures is a team of local ACMG Certified guides and experienced professionals but they’re also a ton of fun and really enjoy what they do! Adventure is personal so you want a guide that will not only help keep you safe, but share the ex...
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Mountain Skills Academy
Mountain Skills Academy
Mountain Skills Academy
ACMG/IFMGA Certified Guides
Go beyond the touring terrain with courses in avalanche safety, setting tracks, crevasse rescue, and more. These are the people to call for comprehensive backcountry safety training as well as epic tours.
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Things to know

  • 57hours is committed to providing safe outdoor adventure experiences. We require all guides using our platform to have a COVID-19 safety plan and to make the details of that plan accessible to travelers. In most cases, group sizes will be reduced, guides will avoid overcrowded locations, and other safety measures will be met depending on the location and activity.

    We also expect clients to respect local regulations and take measures to protect themselves, guides and the communities they’re travelling to. For more information on COVID-19 measures in Squamish, BC, please refer to the Explore Squamish and the Government of British Columbia.

    Please contact us if you have any questions or require further information. We are happy to provide you with the most up-to-date information!

  • What you get in this adventure:

      • An experienced, certified guide with extensive knowledge of the area
      • A classroom day and a full day in the field
      • Extra day in the field for the AST 1+ course
      • Avalanche Skills Training Level 1 certificate (upon successful completion)
      • A Companion Rescue Field Card acknowledging completion date at course end
      • Avaluator Booklet
      • Canadian Avalanche Association mandatory student fee

    What’s not included:

      • Technical backcountry ski touring equipment
      • Accommodation
      • Food and snacks
      • Parking
      • Shuttle services
  • In order to get the most of this adventure, you need to have a moderate level of fitness. You will be on your feet for a full day. You will need to manage controlled descents in variable conditions. All participants should feel comfortable on challenging blue or black level resort runs and be able to carry a loaded daypack while skinning up variable degrees of terrain.

    Prerequisites: You need to be at least an intermediate skier seeing as you’ll need to be able to ascend moderate slopes using skins. All participants should be comfortable traveling in snow while carrying touring gear. You should also have an average level of fitness.

  • For technical backcountry ski touring gear, you will need to bring:

      • Alpine touring skis or splitboard with skins and bindings (can be rented)
      • Touring boots and poles (can be rented)
      • Avalanche safety equipment (can be rented):
        • Digital, 3-antenna avalanche transceiver or beacon
        • Lightweight snow shovel
        • Avalanche probe

    For personal items, we recommend bringing:

      • Helmet
      • Sunglasses or ski goggles
      • Gloves
      • A warm hat/toque and balaclava
      • Wind and waterproof shell jacket with hood (Gore-Tex recommended)
      • Ski pants (Gore-Tex recommended)
      • Down or synthetic insulated jacket or vest
      • Synthetic or wool base layers, underwear and socks
      • Mid layer fleece top
      • One triple-action locking carabiner or two conventional locking carabiners
      • Repair kit and Leatherman for your equipment (can be shared between several people)
      • Water bottle and 1L of water
      • Thermos with a warm beverage — optional
      • Food you can eat on-the-go
      • First-aid kit with blister kit
      • Sunscreen
      • Daypack large enough to carry all items listed (around a 25-35L backpack)
      • Pen, paper/notebook, face mask (for Classroom Day)
      • Laptop (for Classroom Day) — optional
      • Map, compass, GPS — optional
      • Camera — optional
  • All mandatory gear can be rented if you don’t have your own. You can rent:

    Rental locations are in Squamish and should be picked up the night prior to your outing. If you need to rent gear, let us know and we can help make arrangements.

  • Group sizes and pricing:

      • For the group courses, the max client to guide ratio is 8:1.
      • Cost is per person and it doesn’t decrease as the group grows.
      • For the private course, the max client to guide ratio is 8:1.
      • The cost for the private course is per person and decreases as your group grows, making it a perfect opportunity to learn with your friends and family!

    Courses in Squamish, BC, can be arranged for larger groups. Contact us to make arrangements.

    Min. age requirements:

      • If you are older than 19, you’re good to go.
      • Guests under the age of 19 must have a parent or legal guardian sign the waiver on their behalf.

    If anyone under the age of 19 wants to join your group, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.

  • To get to Squamish, most people fly into Vancouver International Airport, about 1.5 hours away from Squamish. From there, you can rent a car or take a shuttle service.

    Once you and your guide agree on the details of your itinerary, your guide will suggest the best place to meet, whether that’s at the guide shop or a predetermined location. If you’ve opted for the in-person course, you’ll head to the guiding company’s classroom location. The guide will choose the appropriate terrain dependent on conditions and the ability of the group.

    For the field day, a shuttle service can be arranged for those without the appropriate vehicle and snow chains to book the shuttle service.

Have more questions? Read our FAQ, or Book a call
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