The last two days I have been out in the Mount Baker backcountry working with a group of US Army personnel. The goal of the course was cold weather survival and although not as cold as it could have been we did have some great conditions for learning and a great group of guys eager to learn.
We start the course with a classroom session and then head into the field to build shelters, cook dinner and spend the night outside. The classroom session discusses cold weather injuries, and equipment. From there we moved into the field and hiked into the backcountry. Once there we set up tents and then discussed improvised shelters, and cooking.
We had a clear and cold night.
The following morning we had several lessons, including terrain use, avalanche identification, improvised rescue sleds and white out navigation.
We concluded the course with fire building practice in the woods further down the Mount Baker Highway where we learned that starting fires in the Pacific Northwest in the winter is quite difficult especially when no lighters are allowed.