The West Central Montana Avalanche Foundation provides four avalanche transceiver training areas or beacon parks within the West Central Montana Avalanche Center advisory area. The ability to support and maintain avalanche transceiver training parks is the sum of volunteer efforts and private-public partnerships.
1. Lolo Pass Visitor Center
A wireless avalanche transceiver training park is installed each winter at Lolo Pass. The training opportunity is available 7 days per week. Snowmobilers will have to walk from the parking lot to use the site. You must have a transceiver and a probe to use the site. This 8 unit station is easy to use and emits a signal when a probe strikes the buried 20″x 20″ target. Please read the directions on the control box and let visitor center staff know if the unit is not functioning properly.
Winter hours of operation at the Visitor Center are Thursday thru Monday from 7:30 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.; Pacific Standard Time. Winter Recreation Passes are required at all times on all vehicles parked in the Lolo Pass parking area. Day, Season and Bundle Winter Recreation Passes can be purchased at the Visitor Center during normal business hours. After hours Day Passes can be purchased at the front door when the center is closed, for exact cash or check only. Day and Season Passes can also be purchased at the Lolo Hot Springs Resort, in Missoula at The Trailhead on Front St., The Outdoor Supply & Rental in Tremper’s Plaza, and the Lolo National Forest Supervisors Office at Fort Missoula.
Organized groups who want to use the site for an educational or training program need to contact Buffie Cerutti at the Powell Ranger Station (208) 942-3113 regarding special use permit requirements.
2. Montana Snowbowl Ski Area
The Snowbowl avalanche transceiver training park is located at the Point Six exit to the backcountry, just off the trail to Nutcracker. The control box is located on-site and is found by referencing the sign directing the user to the yellow waterproof box. You must purchase a lift ticket or have a ski pass to access this park.
3. Lost Trail Ski Area
The Lost Trail Ski Area avalanche transceiver training park is located just outside the Lost Trail aid station near the ski patrol building and base area.
4. Seeley Lake Driftriders Warming Hut (near Lake Elsina and Lake Dinah riding areas)
The Seeley Lake avalanche transceiver training park is located at the Warming Hut located in the Deer Creek drainage northwest of Seeley Lake. The Seeley Lake Driftriders Snowmobile Club will install and maintain the park.