Tuesday, January 6, 2015

International Mountain Day Fundraiser - 2015

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.

The actual date of the day is December 11th. But due to serveral different circumstances, we have decided to celebrate the day on January 10th.

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 through data collection, mountain weather, avalanche forecasting and education.

The 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 mid-November through mid-April and special statements as warranted in early Fall and in 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 in Bellingham, Washington.

Bellingham NWAC Fundraiser - January 10, 2015

Rock Rescue Clinics

We will be offering two two-hour rock rescue clinics at Vital Climbing Gym 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 12:30-2:30 and from 3:00-5:00.

Avalanche Awareness Seminars

We will be offering an Avalanche Awareness Seminar and reception (with beer, pizza and live music) in the evening at the the Vital Climbing Gym. 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. In addition to the avalanche awareness seminar there will be a raffle and an auction.

To learn more, click here. Preregistration is not required, but it strongly encouraged as space is limited.

--Jason D. Martin

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