Located in the beautiful Flathead Valley, The Mountain Guides Montana offers avalanche courses and skills clinics to help you begin and refine your avalanche safety and knowledge and help you become a safer, more competent back country adventurer. In our AIARE courses we’ve taken it to the next level by providing students with an ideal learning environment for avalanche education with a one-of-a-kind venue. All of our AIARE 1 programs take place at Blacktail Ski Area and utilize terrain there during days that the ski area is closed.
To prevent the spread of infectious disease on these courses, we will be using a virtual classroom. Students must have access to a Zoom-enable device and a stable internet connection throughout the course.
We highly encourage every backcountry user to take a Level 1 or 2 AIARE Avalanche Education Course and to follow up with yearly practice, so you enjoy a long lifetime of rewarding backcountry experiences. Along with our AIARE Courses, we offer a number of clinics and opportunities that get you into the mountains to put your back country skills to work!
Minimum Age 18
Our AIARE Level 1 Courses are designed for people looking to build a foundation for safe Backcountry travel. This comprehensive 3-day course focuses on hazard evaluation, decision-making and companion rescue in avalanche terrain. These courses include proper instruction for basic safety and protocols for safe backcountry travel. Over the 3-days you will learn the skills and tools needed to navigate the winter mountains and evaluate the snowpack when traveling through avalanche terrain.
The course begins at noon in Lakeside City Park with introductions, course overview , gear check, hand out maps, text books, field guides, etc. Mondays and Tuesday classes will be held at Blacktail Mountain Ski Area, located 14 miles West of Lakeside, from 9am – 5pm.
AIARE Level I Avalanche Course: Price: $450 Per Person
- Top Long Sleeve Synthetic: medium to expedition weight long underwear Guide Pick: Mountain Hardwear Butterman 1/2 zip
- Soft Shell or Fleece Jacket Guide Pick: Mountain Hardwear 32 Degree Jacket
- Shell Jacket with hood. Guide Pick: Mountain Hardwear Cloudseeker Jacket
- Puffy Jacket: Hood Recommended. Guide Pick: Mountain Hardwear Ghostwhisperer Jacket
- Bottom Synthetic or Wool Long Underwear Bottoms Guide Pick: Mountain Hardwear Butterman Tight
- Shell Pant: full side zips and built-in gaiters Guide Pick: Mountain Hardwear Highball Pant
- Socks: Synthetic or wool. Sized for your boots and blister protection. Liners recommended.
HEAD AND HANDS
- Gloves 3 pair: 1 light, 1 medium, 1 heavy pair Guide Pick: Mountain Hardwear Cyclone GTX Glove
- Hat: medium weight ski hat
- Hat: baseball or visor for sun
- Buff/neck gaiter
- Back Pack: 30 to 40 Liter ski pack, Guide Pick: Mammut Pro Short Removable Airbag System Backpack
- Water & Food: Thermos or insulated water bottles are best. Lot’s of snacks.
- Sunglasses/ Sunglass Case
- Ski Goggles
- Extra Prescription Glasses/Contact Lens
- Sunscreen/Lip balm
- Headlamp-Extra batteries
- Laptop Computer — for Avalanche Courses only
SKI/SNOWBOARD EQUIPMENT FOR THE BACKCOUNTRY (Packages available for rent at JHMG)
- Boots: Alpine Touring, Telemark, or Snowboarding Boots
- Skis or Splitboard with compatible binding for boots
- Climbing Skins (fit to skis)
- Ski Poles
- Helmet (optional)
SNOW SAFETY EQUIPMENT (REQUIRED and available for rent at JHMG)
- Transceiver Guide Pick:Mammut Barryvox S
- Shovel Guide Pick: Mammut Alugator Twist shove
- Probe Guide Pick: Mammut Fastlock Probe 240
The courses takes place near Lakeside, MT and Blacktail Ski Area. Students are responsible for their own lodging, transportation and meals during the course.
Because of Mountain Guides Montana Whitefish, Montana location in beautiful Flathead Valley and proximity to Glacier National Park our venues for teaching are one of a kind. Flights come into Glacier International Airport (FCA) daily. Amtrak arrives once per day.
As the signature sponsor of our Avalanche Safety Courses, all students enrolled will be able to test and demo Mammut avalanche safety equipment during the course at no charge. In exchange, participants provide five photos of the gear in use it as well as a review of the gear OR a post on social media tagging @jhmtnguides and @mammutna.
Talk To Us
Here you’ll find online tools and information about joining us for a trip of a lifetime! To sign up for a trip, or if you have any questions, please call us. Listed on the left side of these pages are links that you may find useful, including printable forms and policies concerning a trip with JHMG. We encourage ALL prospective climbers to read our Preparation advice. Our office can help place you with others who are looking to climb.