What We Do


Friends of the San Juans (FOSJ) provides FREE avalanche awareness courses in Southwest Colorado.  We offer 2 hour Awareness Classes, a series of topic-specific Workshops, and Field Clinics.   All classes are open to the public, FREE of charge.

FOSJ is recognized by the American Avalanche Association (AAA) as an Avalanche Awareness Course Provider, and we consult with highly respected educators in Colorado and elsewhere on our curriculum and course development.

Our Friends from 4CornersTV recently joined us for our December 2015 On-Snow Session and put together this short video.

In our Avalanche Awareness Class, Professionals from our supporting organizations will provide participants with an overview of basic avalanche awareness, avoidance, forecasting, safe travel and self-rescue in a casual classroom environment.  This course is a perfect introduction for novices and a great early season refresher for more experienced travelers.

FOSJ’s Avalanche Workshops are topic-specific, typically with a user group and experience level in mind.  These Workshops are designed as an excellent continuing education model for all levels of backcountry travelers.

Our popular On-Snow Session and other Field Clinics complete FOSJ’s curriculum to take everything we learn in our Awareness Classes and Workshops and apply them in a practical and fun outdoor environment.  Both novice and experienced backcountry travelers have lauded FOSJ’s Field Clinics as an essential learning tool.

Please visit our Class Schedule to see dates, locations, and times.


In supporting our mission to promote snow safety and avalanche awareness through education,   FOSJ is proud to partner with the Durango-based Joe Philpott and Peter Carver Avalanche Scholarship Fund and the Wolf Creek Ski Patrol’s Winter Outdoor Learning Fund.  Every season, multiple FOSJ Members will be awarded scholarships for Level 1 avalanche training  from top educators in the field.  In turn, these recipients will hone their newly acquired skills as a volunteer for FOSJ’s avalanche awareness courses and other community outreach projects.  Each year these individuals are empowered to share their experience by being an active and vocal advocate for the necessity of avalanche awareness and education.  This peer-based educational model loops back around, as each year a new group of individuals learn from previous scholarship winners.

Please visit the Joe Philpott and Peter Carver Avalanche Scholarship Fund website or the Winter Outdoor Learning Fund website for information or to make a donation to the fund.

Providing avalanche awareness and education in Southwest Colorado