When snow gives way: The most dangerous snowpack in the world

Colorado Mountain College in Steamboat Spring’s avalanche awareness class was featured in Sunday’s Steamboat Today newspaper, great coverage of a class that could save your life. The college still has open slots for late-starting avalanche courses. Click here to search for courses in Webadvisor. Select “Search for Credit Classes,” select “Spring 2014″ for your term and plug “avalanche” into a keyword search.

Student Blake Peters digs as his classmate watches during an avalanche rescue scenario at the top of Buffalo Pass. The students were taking part in an avalanche awareness class offered by Colorado Mountain College.

Student Blake Peters digs as his classmate watches during an avalanche rescue scenario at the top of Buffalo Pass. The students were taking part in an avalanche awareness class offered by Colorado Mountain College. Photo by John F. Russell.

Steamboat Springs — It’s Day 1 of Outdoors 168 at Colorado Mountain College’s Alpine Campus in Steamboat Springs, and inside Room 213 of the campus’ newest building, 12 students and one professor begin introducing themselves, one by one.

It’s a typical first-day procedure for a not-so-typical college course.

Around the semicircle they go, students stating their names and explaining what motivated them to sign up for Avalanche Awareness and Safety Level I. Only half of the students have the chance to introduce themselves before CMC instructor Cody Perry gets serious.

Really serious.

“I just want to be safer when I do get alone out in the backcountry,” the sixth student says. “I’ve fallen into a couple tree wells up there. I just think this is a necessary class if you want to live in Colorado click for full article

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