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Avalanche Stage 1

This course teaches students about avalanche safety.
​NZ MSC Avalanche Stage 1 - Jointly administered by Whitireia and the New Zealand Mountain Safety Council.  This is a nationally recognised training programme designed for people wanting to work or already working in an alpine environment - career opportunities include ski patrollers, mountain guides, ski area staff, heli-ski guides, outdoor leaders, teachers, search and rescue, backcountry travellers, police and the armed forces.
This residential avalanche course dates are 13 - 20 August 2017 (13 August is accommodation only, course begins 14 August) and will take place at Levin Waiopehu Lodge, Whakapapa Skifield, Mt Ruapehu.  It is aimed at people involved in professional or advanced recreational alpine activities.  Staff deliver intensive and thorough training, fundamental skills to manage avalanche risk will be assessed. 

At the completion of this course, students will have acquired the following skills:

  • Improved decision making skills to minimise travel risk
  • Recognise avalanche terrain and identify safe route selection
  • Understand the formation and classification of avalanches
  • Identify and record current weather conditions
  • Identify and interpret snow crystals and structures
  • Carry out snowpack analysis and record snow profiles
  • Contribute to an avalanche search and rescue operation
  • Improve personal safety awareness 
To gain a place on this programme, a non-refundable fee of $500 upon application is required.  Full payment is due no later than two weeks before the course start date.

For more information contact Mark Cowley: phone 04 298 0205 ext 4223
Email mark.cowley@whitireia.ac.nz  

Campus Starts on Duration
Kapiti 2017 13 - 20 August Mt Ruapehu (Accommodation included from 13 August) Six and a half days

Domestic Fees: $1,900 (MUST BE PAID TWO WEEKS PRIOR TO COURSE COMMENCING) A non-refundable fee of $500 upon application is required



Entry Requirements

Domestic students

Prospective students should be intermediate skiers/snow boarders with access to touring equipment and have basic alpine skills.

International students

Proven equivalence to domestic entry requirements and IELTS 5.5 with a band no lower than 5 or equivalent.

​Graduates may find employment on ski field snow safety programmes or with companies taking clients into alpine environments for tourism or work related activities.

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