Scheduled Course - Backcountry Mentorship

Backcountry Mentorship

This is a season-long backcountry touring series meant to bring off-piste enthusiasts together over a common passion for skiing & riding outside the confines of the resort.

This mentorship program is spread out over a full winter season, allowing participants to analyze the changing snowpack, develop a broader knowledge of backcountry terrain in the Wasatch, practice and implement decision-making skills in avalanche terrain, bond with fellow backcountry tourers and build a deeper connection with experts in the field.

Topics Include:

  • Dial in your backcountry setup, review what to bring & what not to; learn how to stay warm, yet not overheat on the skin trail
  • Implement beacon function and distance checks
  • Get feedback, practice and hone avalanche rescue skills
  • Methodize your tour planning - use systems to help formulate options and select appropriate tour plans (avi and weather forecasts, red light/green light terrain, etc.)
  • Dig pits, practice on-the-go tests, and record daily findings
  • Evolve your avalanche risk and terrain decision-making skills in relation to the changing snowpack
  • Dial in skinning technique: kick turns, pressure breathing etc
  • Learn to set an efficient, low-risk skin track
  • Develop your downhill movement skills in a various snow types
  • Test your limits - on steeps, trees, couloirs, distance and vertical
  • Get a taste for ski-mountaineering - how and when is it useful climb on foot and to use sharps? Pros & cons of ice axe, whippet, ski & boot crampons, belayed skiing/riding
  • Ride a novel line - as conditions permit. Apply new skills and push for a Wasatch Classic
  • Learn how to be a leader and solid backcountry companion
  • Work as a team, build each other up, be your best self, get fit, explore new terrain and celebrate being out in nature!

NOTE: Guides plan to cover the skills and objectives listed above as indicated by current weather, avalanche and snow conditions. For example, we don't want to waste a low-hazard powder day on rescue drills. Primary objectives will be announced a day or 2 prior to each tour.

How to Register:

Backcountry Mentorship

Backcountry Mentorship

Backcountry Mentorship

Backcountry Mentorship

Backcountry Mentorship

Backcountry Mentorship

Course Details

2023-24 Dates

Dec 15, 2023 Friday
(Assessment Tour)
Jan 12, 2024 Friday
Jan 26, 2024 Friday
Feb 9, 2024 Friday
Feb 23, 2024 Friday
Mar 8, 2024 Friday
Mar 22, 2024 Friday


6 or 7 Fridays (full field day sessions)

NOTE: The first date (Dec 15th Assessment Tour) is required. 6 dates are offered in the new year, but participants may miss one day. Tuition covers 5 of the 6 days in the new year. UMA understands that sometimes life compels participants to miss a day. Participants may add-on the 7th tour date, at prorated fee, if they've attended all 6 tours.


Salt Lake City, Utah


$1650 + tax (tuition covers 6 of 7 tours; including the required first tour Dec 17th)

UMA reserves the right to cancel or shorten the clinic if fewer than 2 participants register.


Must be capable of ascending 3000'+ at a steady pace in a day. Prior Level 1 Avalanche training recommended. Comfortable & in control linking turns in varied ungroomed snow (light and dense powder, crusts, firm snow, etc) and terrain (trees, gullies, steeps, narrow exit trails).

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Utah Mountain Adventures

P.O. Box 521809

Salt Lake City, Utah 84152-1809

Phone: (801) 550 3986

Fax: (801) 486 8505


Utah Mountain Adventures | Patagonia Utah Mountain Adventures | Forest Service Backcountry Skiing Utah, by Tyson Bradley