Advanced Navigation Course

Navigating in the mountains is one of the most important skills a climber, mountaineer, backcountry skier or hiker can acquire. 
The course consists of an evening lecture in North Bend (WA) and a subsequent nighttime ski tour that will be conducted in the dark.


  • Category: Ski
  • Type: Instructional
  • Ratio: 5:1,10:2

* Required Fields

The course consists of an evening lecture in North Bend (WA) and a subsequent nighttime ski tour that will be conducted in the dark. It will take roughly 9 hours including the indoor portion, so get plenty of sleep the night before! This is a fantastic way to learn about navigating in the dark or whiteout conditions and course participants are always amazed how much they get out of this format.
Afternoon Lecture 3:00 pm - 6:00pm:           
During this three-hour class, we will review the “anatomy of a map”, explain tour planning and time calculations, compass use as well as elementary GPS use. After this, the group can have some dinner and then head to the field location for the night tour.
Night Tour 7:00pm - 12:00am:           
During this tour in the Alpental backcountry we will apply all the things we learned in the evening lecture. This tour will obviously only be conducted in safe snow conditions. It is an amazing experience. Treat yourself to this.
Course Curriculum:
• Review of the make-up of a map
• Review of time calculation and tour plans
• Putting a bearing on a map
• Translating the bearing into the landscape
• Putting a bearing into the landscape
• Translating the bearing onto the map
• Basic triangulation
• Whiteout navigation in a winter environment
• The UTM grid system
• Introduction to GPS use

Sign up for a course or a trip and receive a 10% discount on purchases and a 20% discount on gear rental. Go to Pro Ski and Mountain Service.Pro Ski and Mountain Service is our retail specialty store. It has been located in North Bend, WA since 1999.The past trips and courses have had a large influence on what we sell. Many of our Pro Guiding customers come on trips and courses with gear they purchased from our store. Not only do we want our clients to have the right gear for the job; we also receive direct feedback from them while they are using it in the field. Trust us - if the gear does not work - we won't sell it. 

o 1 Bottom - midweight or lightweight
o 1 Top - midweight or lightweight
o Sock Liners (if it is your preference)
o Ski Socks
o Windshirt, Soft Shell, Fleece - only one of these is necessary
o Lightweight Waterproof/Breathable Jacket
o Softshell Type Pants
o Warm Hat - should cover ears
o Lightweight Gloves
o Ski Gloves
o Compass – must have an adjustable declination setting
o Altimeter
o  Map - we’ll let you know the appropriate quads
o Day Pack - 25 to 40 Liters
o Water Bottles - 1 or 2 liters, wide mouth, hydration system
o Lunch and Snacks - appropriate for a full day outing
o Goggles
o Headlamp - lightweight LED recommended
o Skis - Alpine Touring or Telemark
o Ski Boots - Alpine Touring or Telemark – no downhill boots
o Ski Poles - telescopic poles work well, but not required
o Climbing Skins
o Ski Crampons 
o Ski Brakes
o Transceiver - single frequency,  457 kHz only
o Shovel - compact, lightweight, metal blade preferred
o Probe - dedicated probe only, ski poles do not suffice 
OPTIONAL ITEMS *We highly recommend these items, but do not require them to participate.
o Rite in the Rain Notebook - No. 311 recommended
o Pencil
o Map ruler
o Map Case - large zip-loc will suffice
o Skin Wax
o Down or Synthetic Jacket
o Thermos - vacuum type
o Technical Group Gear, VHF radio
o Group 1st Aid Kit

I have map and compass skills, will I get anything out of this class?  The real life nature of a night tour, even challenges our guides. We can pretty much guarantee that you will learn a lot from this class. 

Where will the indoor component be conducted? The indoor component of this course will be conducted in the the town of North Bend as a designated indoor classroom space. The specific meeting location will be announce 10 days prior to the start of the course.  

Where will the night tour be conducted? The tour will be conducted in the Alpental backcontry. The accurate location will be determined by the instructor depending on conditions and weather.  

SHOULD I TIP MY GUIDE? AND HOW MUCH SHOULD I TIP THEM? Although tipping is not a requirement it is considered standard practice in the guiding industry and is appreciated by our guides. We generally recommend roughly 10%-15% of your course or trip cost or flat price tip that you are comfortable with.