Avalanche Canada Webinar Series: October to March, 2020-21

We've got a great line-up of webinars for this season! Check out the schedule and be sure to register prior to the event. (All webinars will be recorded and made available post event).

Avalanche Canada is hosting a weekly webinar series focusing on various aspects of avalanche safety, geared towards different user groups. The webinars are free, but pre-registration is required! Links to register for these events will become available a few weeks prior to each webinar.

These live webinars will be held in the evening (7–8 pm Pacific Time), but all of them will be recorded and made available from our website after the event if you are unable to attend.

Click on the link within each event to register. We will add links throughout the season.

For past events, clicking on the link will take you to the recording.

Wed., Oct. 21: Avalanche Canada: One-stop-shop and the Mountain Information Network: Here's a great review of the basics of our fundamental online avalanche safety tools (all users).

Wed., Oct. 28: Renshaw Case Study (snowmobilers). This case study looks at an incident that occurred in 2016 at the Renshaw riding area near McBride, BC. This event involved many different groups and the outcome was complicated, as well as tragic. Avalanche Canada worked with survivors, Search and Rescue members, and the BC Coroners Service to reconstruct this incident and better understand how the avalanche happened and why so many people were caught. This story illustrates how quickly difficult and complex scenarios can arise in the backcountry, sometimes with tragic consequences.

Wed., Nov. 4: Avalanche Safety for Ice Climbers: Assessment, Mitigation, Preparedness and Information Exchange: Join Grant Statham, Parks Canada Visitor Safety Specialist, and Sarah Hueniken, an ACMG Climbing Guide and Avalanche Canada Ambassador, for a fast-paced, one-hour presentation on avalanche safety for ice climbers. We’ll go through some basic awareness and mitigation techniques, discuss preparedness and the use of avalanche rescue gear when climbing, talk about the importance of information sharing and tracking avalanche activity, and finish by teaching you how to estimate the size of an avalanche.

Wed., Nov. 11: Recognizing Avalanche Terrain and Trip Preparedness: This presentation is great for new backcountry recreationists or those looking for a refresher. This presentation focuses on the basics of avalanche terrain: what is avalanche terrain, how to recognize and avoid avalanche terrain, what equipment is needed, and what resources are available. It will also cover trip planning and preparedness.

Wed., Nov. 25: Staying Alive Night: A Revelstoke-focused event on avalanche awareness and safety. Information is presented on backcountry safety from various perspectives, including Revelstoke Mountain Resort, Avalanche Canada, Parks Canada, Search & Rescue, and the Revelstoke Snowmobile Club. Guest speakers and Avalanche Canada Ambassadors Chris Rubens and Nadine Overwater will share their tips on staying safe in the backcountry this season.

Thurs., Dec. 3: Getting the Most Out Of the Mountain Weather Forecast (MWF): Interested in learning more about the weather? How to predict the weather, how it will affect the snowpack, and what it means to your riding on the weekend? Find out how to best utilize tools found on the Mountain Weather Forecast with guest speaker Lisa Erven from the Meteorological Services of Canada.

Thurs., Dec. 10: Choosing Terrain for Snowmobilers: Terrain choice is always the answer to having a safe, fun day out in the backcountry. Martina Halik, our avalanche technician from the North Rockies, will do a quick review of avalanche terrain basics and then lead you through a variety of images and exercises to help hone this skill.

Thurs., Dec. 17: Riding out of bound - What you need to know: (skiers/boarders): Are you lured by the untracked powder beyond the boundary line? Ducking the rope is the same as heading into the backcountry—you need the proper gear, you need the forecast, and you need training. Don't fall into a complacency trap because you can see the ski resort. Join pro skier, Chris Rubens, ACMG guide Greg Hill, and Whistler/Blackcomb patroller Amy Ertel as they share their knowledge that will help keep you safe.

Wed., Dec. 23: Pre-Christmas Conditions Update: Join senior Avalanche Canada forecasters James Floyer and Ilya Storm to get the big picture on avalanche conditions in our various forecast regions through the holidays. Tune in and tune up.

Thurs., Jan. 14: Being Pro: Using the Daily Process: As recreationists, we want to follow the guidance and steps that professionals use in their decision making process when heading into the backcountry. Avalanche Canada forecaster Grant Helgeson will lead you through these steps that you can incorporate into all your backcountry adventures. Guest speaker Nadine Overwater, an Avalanche Canada Ambassador and pro snowmobiler, will also present.

Thurs., Jan. 21: Be Avy Savvy - What SAR Wants You to Know: Join AJ Maheu, a volunteer with North Shore Rescue, and Lisa Paulson, Visitor Safety Specialist with Banff, Yoho and Kootenay National Parks, as they speak about the rescues they perform each winter. They will share tips on what every backcountry recreationist should do for trip planning, as well as the gear and training necessary to safely access the backcountry. Learn from others so you do not become a rescue statistic.

Thurs., Jan. 28: Mount Harvey Case Study (snowshoers & others): In April 2017, five snowshoers tragically died when a cornice collapsed from the summit of Mount Harvey near Vancouver. Avalanche Forecaster Mark Bender will share this story so people can learn more about avalanche terrain: what to avoid, how to assess, and how to be situationally aware so you can stay safe on your winter adventures. Avalanche Canada Ambassador Abby Cooper will also present on how to plan like a pro.

Wed. Feb. 3: Close calls in the Newfoundland backcountry -- Important lessons: Join Avalanche Canada Newfoundland field technician, Andy Nichols, and 4 backcountry riders & climbers from Newfoundland who will share their close calls in avalanche terrain. As more people learn about the joys and adventure of winter backcountry travel, it is essential to learn the avalanche basics before you head out there. Please tune in and hear these important lessons, learned in the Newfoundland backcountry, but applicable to any region with avalanche hazards.

Thurs., Feb. 11: Choosing Terrain: Terrain choice is always the answer to having a safe, fun day out in the backcountry. Join Avalanche Canada forecaster, Grant Helgeson, as he leads you through a variety of images and exercises to help hone this skill.

Thurs., Feb. 18: South Rockies Update: Jen Coulter from our South Rockies field team and Simon Horton, Avalanche Canada forecaster, will give you an update on the state of the snowpack. They will also present on crowd-sourcing for a better backcountry community.... giving tips to help you have fun and safe days on your winter adventures.

Thurs., Feb. 25: Low Probability, High Consequence Avalanches (all users): Deep persistent layers can be the sleeping dragon. When they go, they go big. Join Avalanche Forecaster, Kate Devine, to learn more about these low-probability, high-consequence scenarios and how to adapt and adjust your decision-making, route finding and terrain selection.

Thurs., March 11: Why is March the deadliest month? Historically, we have the highest number of avalanche fatalities in March. What March will bring us this season is still an unknown but the deeply buried persistent layer may set up a low probability/high consequence avalanche scenario. Avalanche Forecaster, Grant Helgeson will present on the big picture snowpack and S. Rockies field team member, Jennifer Coulter, will present tips on how to safely manage your backcountry excursions.

Thurs., March 18: Behind the 'Gram: Tonight's webinar is a panel discussion with youth in mind. How do pro riders get those amazing shots and videos that they post on Instagram and Facebook? There's a lot of behind the scenes training, patience, discipline, communication and key decision-making to get those 60 second thrilling posts. Join Moderator Marty Schaffer, two prolific pro athletes and two of our youth Avalanche Ambassadors to learn more about what's needed before you try these tricks yourself.

Thurs., March 25: Cold snow in the Yukon and the transition to spring: In cold climates spring is often the most appealing time of year for activities in avalanche terrain. Join Yukon field team member Drew Nylen for insights into this dynamic time of year and how the snow is changing.