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Mark Smiley Teaches Ski Mountaineering Skills in New Online Course

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#skimountaineering is, hands down, the best way to turn the worst part of mountaineering into the best part...the descent. Interest in the sport is exploding, for good reason, yet for those getting into it, what’s the best way to learn? Especially if you don’t know someone that can mentor you, or you don’t have the financial means to hire a guide whenever you want? I created a flagship online backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering course, designed to solve this problem. It’s for anyone with an Internet connection, a hunger to learn, and a non-squirrel attention span. The course goes live in a few weeks. Scroll through the other images to see the table of contents. Something missing? Special Offer: If you’re the first to comment with a topic that I do not already have, and I include it, I’ll give you a free course. Happy brainstorming! Photo by: @andy_bardon #mtnsense #mountainsense #backcountryskiing #skimountaineering #optoutside #neverstoplearning #arcteryx #atomicski #camp1889 #kaenon #sterlingrope #gobiggohome #picoftheday #instagood

A post shared by Mark Smiley (@smileysproject) on

We get it, ski mountaineering can be a confusing subject: there are ropes, there are pointy metal things, and there are a host new hazards included in spending a special kind of day out in the mountains. If you want to get into it safely, you better find a patient friend who’s willing to show you how things are done, or better yet, you can check out Jackson Hole-based IFMGA guide Mark Smiley’s brand-new online course MTN Sense that covers just about everything you need to know about getting really gnarly on skis.

RELATED: Mark Smiley Chats About His 36-Day Traverse Of The Alps

Of course, these aren’t the kinds of things that Youtube University can fully explain, but it’s a great start for those looking to start going deeper in the mountains. It’s an even better resource for those with some experience that are looking for a go-to reference point with any questions. Practice makes perfect, so make sure you follow up taking this course with some real-world practice time.

Countless hours have been invested in making this a one-stop resource for beginners just starting out, intermediate users that want to up their game, and even pros that want to refine their existing skills and techniques. Really I made this for my 26 year old self. Had I had this helpful resource 12 years ago, I would have been skiing bigger lines, more safely, in a fraction of the time. Now that resource is live and available for you! In the convenience of your own screen.

-Mark Smiley

Smiley's course is all about real-world skills to help you travel safely and efficiently through complicated terrain in the mountains. Mark Smiley/MTN Sense photo.

We took a deep dive into the online course that consists of 10 sections ranging including things like avalanche safety, skimo gear selection, ice climbing and rope skills, as well as expedition knowledge and navigation and found that it’s an impressively curated encyclopedia of all things mountain skills. Smiley does an excellent job explaining some very not-straightforward stuff in very straightforward terms. There are even some guest cameos from familiar faces like Cody Townsend explaining how they take these skills and apply them in their own pursuits like the Fifty Project.

Enroll in the MTN Sense Course Here

The course is available now, with an early bird 40 percent off discount until November 25. Give it a look if you are looking for some extra knowledge on how to travel through big mountains this winter. 

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