AIARE avalanche level one courses

AIARE Level 1 Avalanche classes- taught by Avalanche Education Specialists (AES). Call George D’Angelo directly for information and reservations 406-838-6617 or email

Jan 14-16, 2014- $475

Jan 17-19, 2014- $475

We are pleased to announce that we have begun a partnership with Avalanche Education Specialists (AES) to begin offering AIARE avalanche classes based at Downing Mountain Lodge. AIARE is the leading provider of curriculum based avalanche classes and sets the bar for education in this field of study: We will be hosting George D’Angelo and fellow lead instructor Michael Hatch at Downing Mountain Lodge during the week of Jan 14-19. They will be leading and teaching consecutive, immersion style, Level 1 avalanche courses during this week based from the lodge. George has years of experience skiing in the Missoula area as well as in central Idaho where he has taught yurt based classes in the Sawtooths. Michael has also led and taught classes in the Sawtooth Range and elsewhere and is a certified Level 1 and Level 2 Course Leader from Enterprise, Oregon.

Course 1 will be Tuesday Jan 14 – Jan 16. $475.00 per person
Course 2 will run Friday Jan 17- Jan 19. $475.00 per person

To sign up for either the weekday or weekend Level 1 AIARE class please contact George D’Angelo directly at or by phone 406-838-6617

These two 24 hour courses will lay the groundwork for winter backcountry enthusiasts to travel safely, securely and enjoyably. With two nights lodging at Downing Mountain Lodge and three days spent studying snowpack, assessing terrain, and skiing at Downing Mountain, it will be a great week of education and enjoyment. The price for joining one of the classes is $475. We have a limited number of spots available on this hut based course and the price includes instruction and materials, lodging and all meals. We look forward to this initial avalanche education offering and being able to provide the highest quality training for our guests and the backcountry community.

For students interested in furthering their education and joining a day of guided ski touring on Downing Mountain, we will be offering a full day as the fourth day of the program either on Friday January 17 or Monday January 20. I will lead this day tour with a focus on terrain selection, self awareness, and group dynamics. This day will be an opportunity to put new skills to work and get in a full day of skiing after the three days of instruction, digging pits, and assessing snowpack and terrain. The additional price for the third night and fourth day is $125 and includes lodging and guiding. Please contact me directly for this additional offering. 406-531-1486 or

About JohnLehrman

I graduated from UM in 1995 with a degree in Wildlife Biology and a minor degree in Wilderness studies. After years of chasing data and wildlife, I settled into a job as trip leader and a director of Keewaydin Wilderness camp a canoe trips program in Northern Ontario. My wife, Jenny, and I started operating the Downing Mountain Lodge in 2008-2009 and purchased the facility and 60 acres in July, 2012. Operating as the premier Montana backcountry ski lodge in the winter and a holiday retreat the rest of the year, the Downing Mountain Lodge is located west of Hamilton Montana in the Bitterroot Range of the Rocky Mountains. With incredible skiing in the winter and exceptionally private but accessible lodging year round, the Downing Mountain Lodge, built in 1976, is the iconic mountain lodge in the Bitterroot Valley, available to the public for enjoyment and pleasurable stays.
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