Ski-Doo Free Avalanche Seminars Back For Fifteenth Year | Mountain Sledder
October 20th, 2023

Ski-Doo Free Avalanche Seminars Back For Fifteenth Year

Ski-Doo snowmobiles and parent company BRP continue to back up their Responsible Rider program with the fifteenth year of free avalanche awareness seminars designed to help keep riders safe. The company believes in creating safe experiences for riders of all brands – at all levels of skill – and education like these seminars is key in achieving that goal.

Backcountry Access (BCA), the leader in avalanche safety gear, shares the same goal and supports these seminars with equipment and their in-depth knowledge of backcountry recreation safety. Attendees are encouraged to bring their fellow back country explorers to increase or refresh their knowledge in a fun, interactive atmosphere.

Lead Canadian Instructor Marshall Dempster

Relevant & Accessible

Having reached over 25,000 snowmobilers to date, the need for these seminars is consistently voiced by attendees and provides testimony to their value and importance for the sled community. Their thirst for knowledge has also helped shape the curriculum and continually update course material to be relevant and entertaining for today’s rider.

Riders are encouraged to bring friends along, especially those with whom they ride most often. The benefit to bring fellow riders with is clear – help raise group awareness of those you ride with and care about, to ensure you can all track the groups’ well-being and help each other if a situation ever occurs.

In addition to sponsoring in-person seminars, Ski-Doo collaborated with BCA on a useful video series which can be found in the Ski-Doo Owner Zone along with the wide ranging  BCA safety videos available on their website to help advance knowledge remotely. Riders are also encouraged to use Backcountry Ascender, an online backcountry education platform. This free, self-directed program provides basic avalanche education and encourages traditional course attendance to advance to higher levels. Much of the course content can be completed online, and where needed, the program directs users to relevant in-person courses like the Ski-Doo/BCA-sponsored seminars.

Seminar Attendees At A Course Last Year


About the Seminars

Leading the Canadian sessions this season is Marshall Dempster. With 20 plus years of experience in the avalanche and mountain rescue fields, Marshall is a professional avalanche forecaster through the Canadian Avalanche Association. He is a lead instructor for the recreational avalanche skills training program with Avalanche Canada and Frozen Pirate Snow services. He is also a lead guide and member of the board of directors with the Canadian Motorized Backcountry Guides Association (CMBGA), the newly formed certifying body for the snowmobile guiding community. He is excited to share his years of experience and lessons learned in his time spent working and playing in the mountains.

As one of the most recognized snowmobile trainers in North America, Mike Duffy of leads the US seminars. He’s a certified instructor, course provider and professional member of the American Avalanche Association. He also instructs at the American Avalanche Institute, Alaska Avalanche School and Silverton Avalanche School. Duffy has been giving snowmobile-specific avalanche classes since 1996. As rescue team leader in the Vail Mountain Rescue Group, he has more than 30 years of mountain riding and mountain rescue experience. He is also a Backcountry Guide and riding instructor.

Marshall Dempster In The Field With The CMBGA


Take Advantage

Seminars are open to all levels of experience and owners of all brands of sleds. For up-to-date information on locations and times, or to register for a free avalanche awareness seminar, visit the Ski-Doo website (links below) or follow Ski-Doo on Facebook and Instagram.

US Locations:

CAN Locations:

Participants are encouraged to register with the host dealer so they can plan meeting space accordingly and ensure a spot.

– MS