Avalanche Rescue


Course Outline

Designed for those team members who have previous experience, knowledge & skills, who wish to refresh, up-date and improve their practical avalanche knowledge and search skills in the field. This course will provide:

  • Theoretical training & discussion groups
  • Practical skills workshops & scenarios
  • Avalanche rescue training exercises
  • Avalanche casualty care

Pre-Course Requirements

In order to ensure the smooth running of the course all candidates are asked to ensure they observe the following conditions:

  • All participants are requested to ensure they have transport available as the course programme will necessitate travel to and from training venues. Where possible course candidates are required to use their own vehicle.
  • For insurance purposes participants are requested to sign on with  their own team prior to course attendance. This is an SMR course pre-requisite.
  • Participants are expected to provide their own evening  meals/hill food for the duration of the course.
  • Participants may be required to pay for gondola access (Lochaber) on both days a reduced cost will be negotiated by the course director, cash to be handed to group leaders late Friday evening.
  • Sufficient personal equipment is required to enable candidates to operate within a winter mountainous environment, in all conditions for the duration of the course.

For your comfort and safety please to ensure you have appropriate equipment for this course.

Essential Equipment

  • Personal avalanche transceiver + spare batteries
  • Avalanche probe
  •  Snow shovel
  • Team radio + spare battery
  • Map of the area

Example program

Friday Topic Trainers
1730 Trainers meet for briefing  
1900 Course welcome and intro Emma Pearce
1915 Avalanche Avoidance Ken Marsden
2000 Hasty Party and Probing Emma and Ken
2045 Groups and prep for Saturday All
Saturday Topic Trainers
0815 Planning exercise to set up day Ken
0845 Depart for Hill  
0945 Practical sessions

a)      The Journey

b)      Transceiver Searches

c)      Hasty Search techniques

1330 Practical Skills Stations

a)      Multi transceiver searches, probe line, including flags

b)      Shovelling and Casualty Extraction and Packaging


Ken plus 2



Jonathon plus 2

1645 Depart hill  
1900 Review of day and scene set for Sunday Emma
1915 Lecture: Transceivers Ken
2000 Medical – Casualty Care Jonathon
2045 Social  
Sunday Topic Trainer
0815 Avalanche Scene Management Emma
0900 SARDA lecture Tom Gilchrist
0945 Depart for hill  
1030 SARDA demo Tom & Charlie
1130 Recap of skills in groups All
1245 Avalanche Incident exercise All
1515 Depart mountain and debrief  
1630 Course finish and trainer debrief All




Scottish Mountain Rescue, formerly known as The Mountain Rescue Committee of Scotland, is a registered Scottish Charity – number SC045003