/ ski guide/instructor/patrol

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MH123 - on 21 Jul 2012
I'm looking into possible jobs over a winter season, but not sure of the best route to go down. I want some thing that will allow a fair amount of skiing but also teaching or helping other skiiers/boarders. So the options are ski instructor,(heli?) ski guide or ski patrol. If anyone has any advice on places to go/not to go, courses or just advice in general it would be much appreciated.Thanks Max
muppetfilter - on 21 Jul 2012
In reply to MH123: There are loads of intensive courses out there designed to suck a few thousand pounds out of you and promise a "career" ... sadly the case is you will have wasted money and time.
You would be better to work through the awards with BASI

JuneBob on 21 Jul 2012
In reply to muppetfilter:
Hmm, not sure if I entirely agree with that.
It kind of depends what you're looking for. I did one of those courses as I wanted to do an intensive course to improve my skiing, and while it's quite a bit of money, it's actually quite a good deal for 11 weeks all-inclusive with full time coaching.
In the end I did take up being a ski instructor, and did it for 2 seasons. Could have easily continued and made a career out of it, and some of the others on my course have.
If, on the other hand, your level of skiing is good enough you could just do the basi exams and save yourself some cash.
chrisfecher on 22 Jul 2012 - cpc15-lich10-2-0-cust7.3-2.cable.virginmedia.com
In reply to MH123: Bit more info would be good? Whats your skiing/climbing background? Where are you from and where would you like to be based?
MH123 - on 22 Jul 2012
In reply to all: thanks for the replies, i have friends who have done the intensive courses and even though they said it was amazing i dont have that kind of money to spend on it. So just doing the BASI courses looks like a good option. In reply to chrisfecher: i've been skiing since i was 8 (now 20) once and sometimes twice a year, in france and austria. Climbings mainly trad and sport although have climbed on ice a couple of times. I'm based in devon at the moment as an outdoor instructor. Not to fussed about where I would want to be based as want to travel so recommendations on this are welcome. Thanks Max
Terry James Walker - on 22 Jul 2012
In reply to MH123: Hey Max,
If you're keen to get away this coming season, it's getting late to be applying for jobs, so get on it.

Any professional jobs would need at least BASI 2... which I did by just rocking up to the exams and working at the dry slopes to get the hours. You'll need a reasonable skill level though. Watch the videos on the BASI youtube page.

Ski patrol is a tough one, maybe look into america/canada, but countries in the alps wouldn't accept you unless you were super clued up on first aid (10 day training and assessment type stuff), qualified up to your eyeballs, fluent language, and been working as a lifty/piste marker person for a few years.

Heli-guiding is a good job, but you'll need your instructor tickets along with the Off-Piste certificates, Ie BASI 4 Mountain Security, and possibly even your Winter Mountain Leader.... Once you've got all that, there's only a few places where I've heard of friends getting jobs... And that's Alaska and Canada. It's banned in most resorts and areas in the alps now and would be hard to get a job anyway. Dream job really though!

Instructor is a good one, there are a few companies in Austria who would employ you fulltime with BASI 2, and some in italy for 4 weeks a season. Then there's Switzerland where you can work with BASI2 but its very very competitive, so if you've got great chat and good sales skills that can work.

Ski Guide would be probably your best option. Work for a holiday company, ie mark warner / crystal / etc. They'll pay for everything for you, and give you about Eu60 a week on top. You need to be an alright skiier with a nice friendly personality.

To get maximum ski time... Save up money, buy a van, and bum around a cheap resort for the season.... Very good times!

Good luck bro, and give me a shout if you get BASI2, I might be able to help you out.
chrisfecher on 22 Jul 2012 - cpc15-lich10-2-0-cust7.3-2.cable.virginmedia.com
In reply to MH123:
Canada or NZ for ski guides qualification(heli guide) Check out the Canadian guides or NZMGA for path ways. BASI L4 is a good option and will take you around the same time to complete as the ski guides 4-5years. More work opportunities in Europe with your BASI L4, as the ski guides isn't recognised in the obvious places like France, etc.

Ski patrol can be really interesting work and lead into ski guiding as the experience is very useful. Search for programs in NZ or Canada.

Drop me a line if you want some more detailed info.

Good luck
MH123 - on 25 Jul 2012
In reply to Terry Walker & chrisfecher: thanks for the info, plenty to think about and look into. BASI L2 seems like a good starting point to progress from and see where it leads to. Although will definitely look into the ski patrolling courses as i think the experience from that especially 1st aid will be useful in other outdoor ed work. Max

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