Like dancing, staying safe in the outdoors is easiest with quick feet, a strong sense of surroundings, and a partner equipped with bread crumbs in case you get lost. Boogie-woogie with nature with today’s Groupon to Apex Ex. Explorers can meet at Rocky Mountain National Park’s gates or at a pickup location in Denver or Boulder. Choose between the following options:
- For $99, you get a two-day Avalanche Level 1 Experiential learning excursion (a $299 value), which includes:
- Eight hours of online preparation material
- All-day avalanche rescue learning excursion in Rocky Mountain National Park
- All-day snow travel learning excursion in Rocky Mountain National Park <p>
- For $39, you get a full-day Winter Backcountry Basics learning excursion (a $125 value).<p>
Apex Ex’s seasoned outdoorsmen cure cabin fever with all-day learning excursions to the snow-swept peaks and valleys of Rocky Mountain National Park, where fun depends on awareness of safety and science. The three-part Avalanche Level 1 Experiential package delivers a comprehensive primer on understanding the science behind avalanches, the logistics of safe snow travel, and the fundamentals of rescuing friends or cherished diaries from an avalanche. After studying natural history and environmental science with an interactive online course, adventurers embark on an all-day avalanche rescue trip. Games of hide-and-seek lend hands-on practice with rescue equipment such as beacons, shovels, and probes. On a second all-day trip, students narrow in on the science of avalanches. Pits dug to study the varied layers of snowpack transform into trenches during an epic snowball fight or a frosty reenactment of the Spanish-American War. The trips, which can be physically demanding, are great for experienced snowboarders, skiers, and snowshoers.
During a full-day Winter Backcountry Basics tour, students hike the un-manicured park grounds in snowshoes as a guide explains the fundamentals of safe travel in wintry wilderness. After a primer on survival skills, including avalanche safety and pre-trip preparation, groups build snow shelters to practice being stranded in a storm or living in a house of ice cream. The guide sprinkles information throughout the hike and lets groups enjoy a snowman-building competition and a snowball fight. Though limited rental equipment is available for an extra fee, all students should bring their own equipment, including snowshoes or snowboards as well as a beacon, a shovel, and a probe. Excursions run on weekends through April; click here to set up a trip.
While Apex Ex provides all materials and equipment for the Backcountry Basics experience, several items are not included in the Avalanche Level 1 excursion. These required items include a beacon, probe, shovel, snow shoes, and skis or a split board with skins. Adventurers can bring their own gear or rent it from Apex Ex.
The mountain-savvy staff at Apex Ex equip people of all skill levels with the knowledge, gear, and plans necessary to explore the wilderness all year round. Seasoned guides and instructors, many of whom are trained by organizations such as the National Outdoor Leadership School and the American Mountain Guides Association, lead classes that teach students important lessons ranging from backcountry snow basics to avalanche rescue. In summer months, the experts lead guided climbing and backpacking trips and offer whitewater tube rentals. Water and adventure sports enthusiast can then enjoy a wild ride on Clear Creek in Golden, which can be kicked up a notch by hopping out at the park and enjoying the ambiance, setting up a picnic, or playing frisbee, hacky sack, and slack line.