Première neige

First Snow

Safety, knowledge and fun!

Get your skis out! Dust off your skis and your knowledge.
Upguides offers you a weekend to get back to basics, a friendly 2-day event organised by the association L'Alternative.

The concept: a first day dedicated to training and drills around snow, safety and first aid followed by a festive evening, then a second day on skis to extend the previous day's discussions in a ski touring context.

 1 day, 2 days, just the evening, we celebrate the beginning of winter, do as you wish!

Trip Essentials

17-18 December 2022
Val Cenis, Haute Maurienne, France


Day 1:
-Morning: various workshops in small groups.
Observation of the snow cover, basic snow techniques
Handling your avalanche transceiver, workshops on the range and special cases (double maximum, deep burials etc...)
Simple & complex avalanche transceiver search (multi-victim / deep burials / special situations)
Probing and shovelling techniques
Passing an alert message (radio / telephone), who to call, what to say
Organisation of the search and rescue: surface clues, DVA search, optimisation and distribution of roles
First aid: detecting a distress

-Afternoon: complete exercises on skis
Complete avalanche rescue exercises, from the recognition of the situation to the arrival of organised rescue
Practical case study in first aid

-Après-ski :Ortovox Challenge - Aperitif/ Meal around the fire

Day 2: Ski touring and discussions in the field
A day of friendly ski touring in small groups of different levels, whether you are a ski touring beginner or a ski professional.
Discussions about the choice of itineraries, the use of the terrain and the group dynamics.

Day 1: what do you know about avalanche search?

Level 1:
Put your avalanche transceiver in search/emission mode. Know how to do a double check
Mount your shovel and probe
Basic avalanche transceiver search (1 victim, primary/secondary and final search)
Probing technique (2 hands with gloves, perpendicular to the slope) 
Level 2:
Know your avalanche transceiver perfectly. number of detectable victims, analog/digital modes
Be efficient on a search for 1 or 2 victims. Mark the victims and move on to the next victims
Know the principle of avalanche rescue organisation, know how to give your position
Shoveling techniques
Level 3:
Organise an avalanche search
Distribute the work (surface index, avalanche transceiver, mount shovels, etc.)
Give an alert
Question a witness calmly and get the right information
Level 4 :
First aid techniques
Pay attention to the important signs around an avalanche
Organise a sounding wave (coarse / fine sounding)
Organise the arrival of the rescue team / doctor / DZ

Day 2: a nice day out... but with serious talks!

During this day, here are the topics we'll be talking about:

  • Preparing a ski touring trip
  • Reading the snow&weather forecast, and being able to identify the relevant factors
  • The 6 avalanche activity indicators you should remember
  • Moving in the terrain and using it to our advantage
  • Communication and group dynamics


-Included :
2 days training with UIAGM guides, ski instructors, trainers and first aiders
Welcome coffee / Lunch on the first day / Party

-Not included:
Meals (except lunch on the first day)
Ski passes

per day / per person

More informations & Bookings

What is the ALTERNATIVE association?
The role of the association is to promote our values through voluntary sports events.
The income generated by the association is used to support the creation of a convivial place for sporting and cultural meetings and exchanges, shared with the UPguides structure.
The events for the year 2022/2023 are :

  • 26/27 November 2022: ski and sports equipment market
  • 17/18 December 2022: first snow weekend 
  • 14/15 January 2023: Splitboard Fest'
  • September 2023: Enduro du jeu

Rental equipment :
Do you need ski equipment? Shovel, probe, DVA? Contact us to book!
Accommodation :
We can help you book accommodation, just send us an email.
Book your place