Terrain & Avalanche Rating

Avalanche Risk and Parkland Cross Country Ski Club
Parkland Cross Country Ski Club takes avalanche occurrences and the risk of those occurrences very seriously. Since the early 1980’s it has been club policy to carry avalanche transceivers (beacons) and shovels on all back country trips where there are not groomed trails. It takes very little snow to bury a person, and since most avalanche victims die of suffocation not injuries, it behooves all back country travelers to be able to get to their friends as soon as possible. It has been shown that there is a 90% survival rate for victims recovered in 15 – 20 minutes or less. Our club policy states that all tour leaders have current first aid training; and that all participants on off-trail trips have at least Avalanche Safety Training level 1 (or its equivalent) to ensure safety of the entire group (tour leaders included). We provide refresher nights for beacon use and search procedures each Fall.

Links for Avalanche Conditions
Parks Canada Avalanche Terrain Ratings
Click here to go to the Parks Canada website. 

Click here to see the Avalanche Terrain Ratings of some of the most popular backcountry ski trails in Banff , Jasper, Waterton Lakes, Glacier,  and Yoho National Parks.
Provides excellent and must-read information when planning winter travel in the back country with numerous links to other vital information sources provided to ensure safe travel in the Mountain National Parks
Simple (Class 1) Exposure to low angle or primarily forested terrain. May involve avalanche run-out zones. Many options to reduce or eliminate exposure. No glacier travel.
Challenging (Class 2) Exposure to well-defined avalanche paths, starting zones or terrain traps. Options exist to reduce or eliminate exposure with careful routefinding. Some crevasse hazards on glaciers.
Complex (Class 3) Exposure to multiple, overlapping avalanche paths or large expanses of steep, open terrain. Minimal options to reduce exposure. Complicated glacier travel.
Canadian Avalanche Association http://www.avalanche.ca Provides avalanche bulletins for Western Canada, the National Parks and Kananaskis Country in conjunction with Partner Bulletins
Rescue Dynamics Mountain Weather Forecast Links Page http://www.rescuedynamics.ca/wx/weather.htm Links developed by Rescue Dynamics in Edmonton for avalanche, weather, road conditions and more, as produced by Environment Canada, the Canadian Avalanche Association, Parks Canada, the Alberta Government, the Alberta Motor Association and others.