Monday, November 21, 2011

International Mountain Day Celebration - December 3, 2011

At the American Alpine Institute, we love mountains for their beauty and challenge, and for the livelihood they provide us as guides and outdoor educators. But there are ample reasons for flatlanders to love mountains as well. Mountain ranges function as engines of water production, provide habitat for game, and supply resources for industry. In view of the universal value of mountains, the United Nations established International Mountain Day to celebrate this shared natural heritage.

This year, we have decided to benefit the Northwest Weather and Avalanche Center with our International Mountain Day activities.

The Northwest Weather and Avalanche Center (NWAC) promotes safety by helping reduce the impacts of avalanches and adverse mountain weather on recreation, industry and transportation in Washington, and northern Oregon through data collection, mountain weather, avalanche forecasting and education.  

To achieve this mission, the Northwest Avalanche Center:

  • assists a variety of snow safety and snow maintenance programs by providing and analyzing useful weather, snow and avalanche data, and by producing and distributing a variety of mountain weather and avalanche forecast products.
  • assists backcountry travelers by providing current information on snowpack structure and avalanche danger, and by forecasting expected changes in snow and avalanche conditions.

The professional mountain meteorologists and avalanche specialists at NWAC are on duty from September through June, issuing twice-daily forecasts from about mid-November through mid-April and special statements as warranted in the early Fall and mid-late Spring.

You can develop your personal climbing skills, your avalanche awareness skills and help us to benefit this important cause by participating in our International Mountain Day events.

We will be offering two two-hour rock rescue clinics at the YMCA climbing wall in downtown Bellingham. The clinics will focus on the baseline skills required to perform a rescue in a high angle environment. We will be offering these from 11:30-1:30pm and from 2:00-4:00pm.
We will be offering an Avalanche Awareness Seminar and reception (with beer and pizza and music) in the evening at Allied Arts (next to the Old Pickford) in Bellingham.  Doors will open at 6pm, with the seminar starting at 7pm.  This seminar will be a short introduction to the skills required to safely and effectively move through the backcountry during the winter season.

At all events we will be selling raffle tickets ($5 per ticket) to raise money for the Northwest Avalanche Center.  

To learn more, click here

--Jason D. Martin

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