Equipment List

Tahoe Mountain School


Avalanche Training Equipment List


Personal Equipment:

  • Clothing for activities and standing in cold/snowy weather (no cotton)
  • long underwear
  • insulating layers
  • outer layer (wind/waterproof)
  • warm gloves, mitts, headband, and hat
  • Goggles and sunglasses
  • Small personal first aid kit (sunscreen/lip-balm, moleskin, band-aids, medication, etc.)
  • Water Bottle
  • Pack

Skiing Equipment:

  • Boots (alpine touring or telemark boots)
  • Skis with touring bindings and skins (please adjust bindings to boots and skins to skis before the course). Alpine touring gear is recommended, telemark gear is okay.
  • Poles

Splitboarding Equipment:

  • Split Board with touring bindings and skins (please adjust bindings to boots and skins to board before the course).
  • Boots
  • Collapsible poles

Avalanche Safety Equipment:

  • Avalanche probe (dedicated avalanche probe not a ski pole probe).
  • Collapsible shovel
  • Digital avalanche transceiver
  • Cell phone or two-way radio (OPTIONAL)

Other Equipment:
(this equipment is optional for AIARE 2 courses)

  • Snow, Weather, and Avalanches: Observational Guidelines for Avalanche Programs in the United States– required for Level 2 and Level 3, optional for Level 1.  Available online SWAGs Book.

For AIARE Pro Courses bring: (optional for AIARE 2 courses)

  • Snow saw or folding pruning saw (approx. 40cm blade).  Longer folding saws available from Brooks-Range Mountaineering.
  • Snow thermometer (graduated in degrees Celsius). Dial stem and/or glass/alcohol types are commonly used. Electronic thermometers are acceptable but have limitations for snow profile work.
  • Crystal identification screen. Dark color, metal screen is STRONGLY RECOMMENDED.
  • Magnifier (8x or 10x RECOMMENDED).
  • Folding ruler (graduated in centimetres required. 2 metre length).
  • Compass (or compass with clinometer RECOMMENDED)
  • Altimeter (Optional)
  • AIARE Fieldbook- Bluebook
  • Pencil

Note: Pre-packaged snow observation kits sold in backcountry ski shops often have thermometers in °F, rulers in inches, white crystal cards that are difficult to see clear snow grains and magnifiers that are narrow, overpowered and difficult to see multiple grains or to identify grain size and type. Please take the extra effort to purchase standard magnifiers (available in photo shops or linen shops), darker metal crystal cards and 2m rulers.  If you bring thermometers calibrated in degrees Fahrenheit, you will be at a significant disadvantage on the course.