Discover Utah's Backcountry With Brighton's  Alpine Touring Workshop

Discover Utah's Backcountry With Brighton's Alpine Touring Workshop

By Snow Travelista \ December 15 2016

Brighton's Backcountry Touring Workshop is Back for a 2nd year! This post has been updated with fresh links and details for the 2017-2018 season. 

Have you ever stared at the snow-covered terrain surrounding the ski resort and wished you could ski there too? Or perhaps the crowds get a little too thick making you yearn for some quiet? For many people the desire to ski backcountry has spawned from both. However, Mother Nature demands respect, especially in backcountry snow, so venturing out of bounds without training isn’t a good idea.

Five years ago I was fortunate enough to ski Utah’s backcountry for the first time and knew I wanted more. More recently I joined the Interconnect Tour between Snowbird, Alta, Brighton and Solitude. To say it was epic isn’t an exaggeration.

As much as I enjoyed both excursions, I knew not to go it alone. I simply don’t know enough to be safe. That’s why I got super excited when I found out that Brighton Resort is offering an Alpine Touring Workshop last season. And great's back for a second season with more sessions available! 

It's YOUR job to educate yourself before heading into the backcountry and you should know that there are many resources across the entire state

This course is designed for skiers and snowboarders who want to venture into the backcountry, but still need some basic skills. It’s not an avalanche course, so I still plan to take AVI 1 this season as well. Instead, this course focuses on the practical skills needed to travel in the backcountry, plus some fundamental avalanche awareness.

Here are more details from the Brighton Snowsports School website:

Brighton Snowsports School Alpine Touring Workshop

This workshop will cover many elements associated with backcountry ski touring and splitboarding, such as:

  • Preparing for a winter day in the backcountry
  • Using ski/snowboard touring equipment and skins
  • Safely dealing with group dynamics
  • Planning and setting skin tracks
  • Understanding and using avalanche safety equipment
  • Practicing beacon drills
  • Increasing skiing/riding skills in variable off-piste conditions
  • understanding basic avalanche hazards. *

This workshop is designed for skiers and snowboarders with at least solid intermediate skills and who are comfortable skiing/snowboarding on ungroomed intermediate (blue) terrain. If you have any question about your ability, contact the school to discuss before enrolling.

*Even though some avalanche awareness topics will be discussed, THIS IS NOT AN AVALANCHE SPECIFIC COURSE. Before entering the backcountry, skiers and snowboarders should take specific avalanche courses. For more info check

This workshop will be held over 4 days: 1 evening lecture, 1 half-day on snow and 2 full-days on snow. All on snow days will be held at Brighton Resort with the class skiing in and out-of-bounds. Full-day lift passes will be included for all days except the full-day backcountry tour.

The final day will primarily be spent touring out-of-bounds applying your new skills.

Rate per 4-Day Workshop: $299 including 2 full-day lift passes at Brighton.

View more details, workshop dates, and registration info at: Alpine Touring WorkshopAlso, a full outline of the workshop is available: HERE. 

My husband and I both attended the inaugural session of Brighton’s Backcountry Touring Workshop last season and it was phenomenal! This season, the team has incorporated all of the feedback from last session to build and even better program, such as adding even more on-snow time for students to hone their skills. If you’ve ever had any interest in exploring backcountry touring, this course is the perfect beginning.

Photos courtesy of Brighton Snowsports School.