Backcountry Ski Touring School (BSTS)

Learn to Cross-Country Ski in the Backcountry!

Experience Colorado’s finest snow, away from the crowds and lift tickets! Learn to cross-country ski and get prepared for backcountry trails using classic Nordic-style technique. (No AT or Tele gear allowed in this school.) We accommodate students from never-evers to folks who have skied for years.  Classes are often less than ten students, with at least two instructors.

In December, we hold an interactive lecture on clothing, selection of skis and avalanche awareness. In January, you get three full days on the snow with lessons geared to your level of skill and endurance.  The first on-snow day is at a Nordic center and focuses on becoming comfortable on skis and basic flat-track skills. The second snow day will emphasize basic downhill and uphill techniques.  The third day is a trip into the backcountry, with the location tailored to the skill level of your group.

  • Proper skis/gear/clothing for the terrain and conditions you want to ski
  • Better balance techniques
  • Diagonal stride, including poling
  • Downhill maneuvers (includes stopping, which is always good to know…)
  • Turning maneuvers
  • Climbing maneuvers – herringbone, side-step, side-step traverse, etc.
  • Avalanche awareness

The dates for this year’s 2017-2018 school are:

Interactive classroom session on Tuesday 6:30pm December 5, 2017 (a make-up lecture is available).

On-Snow Days for 2018 (choose a set):

Saturdays: January 6, 13, 20

Sundays: January 7, 14, 21

Tuesdays: January 9, 16, 23

Registration fee is $95 (must be a CMC member). For Trip Leaders and returning students who were enrolled in one of the last three years, we’re offering a discount to $85 – contact CMC Member Services at 303-279-3080 x2 and request the discount.

For more information and online registration for the Backcountry Ski Touring School, please visit the BSTS Course Online Registration Form at  If you have questions which are not answered here or on the registration form, please contact BSTS School Director Joan Rossiter at or call 303-241-7968.

BSTS Student Handout and Materials

BSTS Instructor Materials (Password Protected)



















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