2021 set new records for Avalanche Canada Training programsOne of the unexpected consequences of the pandemic is that people flocked to the outdoors in record numbers. Backcountry skiing and snowboarding was no exception to this phenomenon and many of those flocking to the mountains were new users. This may have been visible in the parking lots and skin tracks, but Avalanche Canada has some numbers for us as many of there new users enrolled in training resulting in a massive 28% overall increase in training participants.
Image courtesy of avalanche.ca.
The infographic above compares the data from the 2018-2019 season as the 2019-2020 season was cut short and therefor the former was the last full season and therefor a better comparison. Perhaps one of the most impressive increases is that of snowshoe users with a massive 215% increase! Before you start gripping about snowshoers on the skin track, put yourself in their shoes and remember that showshoes offer a way into mountains without the prohibitive pricetag that accompanies pin bindings and splitboards; personally I'm stoked to hear so many are coming out to share the snowy spaces we love, especially if they are seeking out training before they do!
Below is a breakdown of student numbers by course:
- Avalanche Skills Training 1: 13,119
- Avalanche Skills Training 2: 1,603
- Companion Rescue Skills: 141
- Managing Avalanche Terrain: 166