In Its Third Year, the Northern Rockies Avalanche Safety Workshop Attracts Snow Safety Leaders

The third annual Northern Rockies Avalanche Safety Workshop (NRASW) will take place Saturday, October 12, 2013 from 8am until 4:30pm at the Grouse Mountain Lodge in Whitefish, Montana.

image001NRASW is a one-day gathering of avalanche professionals and winter backcountry enthusiasts. This year the workshop features five speakers with varied experiences, backgrounds and expertise in avalanche forecasting, theory, information processing, emergency decision-making and other up-to-date backcountry information. The full schedule for the day is available online.

“The last two years of the conference have been impressive,” says Ted Steiner, NRASW Steering Committee member… “Each year more people want to be involved in the learning, networking and camaraderie.  And since it’s before the first snow, people are getting excited about winter, and realizing that it’s time to focus getting educated for a solid winter in the backcountry.”

Northern Rockies Avalanche Safety Workshop speakers:

  • Bruce Tremper has been the director of the Forest Service’s Utah Avalanche Center since 1986. He is the former director of avalanche control at Big Sky Ski Area and worked as a backcountry avalanche forecaster for the Alaska Avalanche Center. He wrote the book “Staying Alive in Avalanche Terrain.”
  • Eric Knoff is an avalanche forecaster with the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Center in Bozeman and with the Glacier National Park Going-to-the-Sun Road Avalanche Program. A former ski patroller and mountain guide in Utah and Wyoming, Eric also worked as a GIS specialist with the Natural Resource Conservations Service.
  • Collin Zacharias is an international mountain and ski guide in Canada, the USA, New Zealand and across Europe. He is an instructor for the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides and the American Mountain Guides Association. As a forecaster, course instructor, curriculum developer and consultant, Collin has been in the avalanche safety industry since 1980. He has been the technical director for the American Institute for Avalanche Research (AIARE) since 2003.
  • LeeAnn Allegretto is the avalanche program leader and assistant hydrologist for the Missoula National Weather Service. She is responsible for managing and updating backcountry weather data and forecasts that affect avalanche prone conditions.
  • Brian Lazar executive director for the AIARE as well as is the deputy director for the Colorado Avalanche Information Center. He has served as a mountain guide, avalanche educator, curriculum developer and consultant. He is a member of the American Avalanche Association Education Committee and has conducted research at the Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research.
  • A representative from the USFS Flathead Avalanche Center will present an overview of the center’s informational resources, a review of last season’s activities, and a preview of happenings for the upcoming season.

image002Where: Grouse Mountain Lodge, Whitefish Montana

When: Saturday, October 12, 2012, 8:00am to 4:30pm

Cost: Pre-Register – $20, At the door- $25 – Pay online, or mail a check to NRASW at P.O. Box 4203 Whitefish, MT. 59937.

If you are mailing a check, still register online (Step 1). Registration fees are non-refundable. For more information please visit

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Ryan Alford

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