American Mountain Guides Association Ski Mountaineering Guides Course and Aspirant Exam Crevasse Rescue Day

Today was day three of the AMGA Ski Mountaineering Guides Course and Aspirant exam. The past two days have been extremely busy!

Yesterday began with a short car ride to our “crevasse” reduce site.  With a 4 meter plus snowpack, most of the crevasses are pretty filled in.  We chose to utilize the same location that the Association Of Canadian Mountain Guides (ACMG) uses for their courses and exams.  It is 20 foot cliff right off the road.  We grouped up into pairs, one guide/ rescuer and one client/victim.  The two would rope up as off traveling on a glacier with skis.  The client would then slide off the cliff into the “crevasse” complete with skis on as if they had skied into a crevasse on a glacier.  The guide would have to arrest the fall and then construct an anchor using his/her skis for the point.

After the anchor was securely built, the guide would escape the rope system.  She would then travel to the edge of the crease making ensuring there was guide security the entire way, meaning she had to stay attached to the rope in some way.  Once at the edge of the crevasse our rescuing guide would prep the lip of the crevasse, getting it ready for extrication of our victim.

Now the fun really begins!  The guide would rappel down to our victim, simulate performing any needed first aid, and the ascend out of the crevasse (clients skis in tow). After the guide would get out of the crevasse, they would then set up a mechanical haul system (pulley system) to haul our victim out!  This all needed to be completed in 45 minutes from start to finish!  Time sure does fly when you are hanging in a crevasse!

The crevasse rescue component is not actually part of this years aspirant exam.  It is in preparation for the actual ski mountaineering guides exam.  There are numerous pictures of day posted on the Kling Mountain Guides Facebook Page.

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