Join A3

Members are recognized by employers as motivated, well informed avalanche professionals. A3 is dedicated to the pro, their safety and access to education and up-to-date resources. Once prospective members meet the criteria, applications are reviewed every two months in conjunction with A3's Governing Board Meetings. To best determine which level of membership to apply for, please review the general descriptions and Pro Membership Guidelines below. The American Avalanche Association provides information about the latest advances in avalanche research, forecasting, hazard reduction techniques and other topics of concern to the professional such as avalanche incidents, rescue dogs, beacons, guidelines, litigation and education. There are four ways to join the American Avalanche Association:


Descriptions & Benefits


Open to Pro and Affiliate members who support A3. Applicants must meet requirements for applicable membership levels. Please reference Pro Membership Guidelines below. 

$1000/Billed Once

 - The Avalanche Review Subscription, 4 Issues/YR

 - Discounts on A3 merchandise and publications. 

 - Pro Deals: Arc Teryx, Black Diamond, 



Open to active, professional avalanche workers with four full-seasons (20 days/season) in addition to qualified educational background and experience required. Please reference Pro Membership Guidelines below.


 - The Avalanche Review Subscription, 4 Issues/YR

 - Discounts on A3 merchandise and publications. 

 - Pro Deals: Arc'teryx, BCA, Black Diamond, (multiple brands), Patagonia



Member Affiliates are entry-level professional patrollers, assistant guides, volunteer patrollers, law enforcement SAR specialists, or agency administrators. Two years of fundamental avalanche work and education required.


 - The Avalanche Review Subscription, 4 Issues/YR



Open to people who are interested in A3 and avalanche work. A3 Members receive The Avalanche Review Magazine. 


 - The Avalanche Review Subscription. 4 Issues/YR



Pro Membership Guidelines

The application review begins when applications are received. The A3 office forwards résumés to the appropriate region’s section representative for review. Once reviewed, they are sent to the membership chair, who presents them to the Board for approval at one of the two Board meetings scheduled each year. To allow time for Section Reps to contact references listed on your application, applications must be sent in by August 15th for consideration at the fall A3 Board meeting and by March 1st for the spring Board meeting


The purpose of the résumé is to provide clear, detailed documentation of your professional-level experience through at least four winters. Shape it accordingly. As a general guideline, you should show a tally of 20 days of active avalanche work per winter over four winters. That figure represents an average number of control days at ski areas with active snow safety programs. If your duties in a position include more than avalanche work, you must provide a tally of the days spent directly performing avalanche-related fieldwork. Ski patrollers, for instance, must document the number of days spent in active snow safety or avalanche control work.

You must document avalanche activities that extend throughout the season for four winters, to show that you are actively observing and working in a variety of conditions as they develop. The activities can be for different operations or employers over the course of a winter. Your experience must be based primarily on forecasting, route finding, rescue, explosive delivery, research, guiding, or similar field work. You may include days instructing field-based avalanche safety courses. However, the primary basis of your experience must still be four or more winters of avalanche-related fieldwork.

You may include completed avalanche courses and continuing education. Acceptable courses are those that follow A3 or CAA guidelines or AIARE curriculum, those from A3 certified instructors, the National Avalanche School, or equivalent in-house or ongoing ski patrol and guide training. Acceptable continuing education includes events such as the ISSW, A3 professional development seminar, CSAW, and AIARE continuing education.

You may include advanced academic education directly connected with snow and avalanche studies. You may include mentored but unpaid professional-level experience such as volunteer fieldwork for an avalanche center. You may include recreational experience such as significant climbs, descents, traverses or expeditions if avalanches were a primary hazard and professional-level avalanche skills and decision-making were essential to your safety. You may include a paragraph explaining why you believe your experience meets the requirements for professional membership.