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Zacs Tracs Vision
- To be a world leader in avalanche and backcountry safety in the snowmobile community through a profitable and innovative series of on-line and off-line training programs and resources.
- To empower riders to take active steps to gather the information, skills, strategies and equipment to make the most of our activities while maintaining an acceptable level of risk.
- To save lives by inspiring life long changes to the way we manage our backcountry activities leading to capable, prepared and responsible riders.
We all have the same goals: to enjoy the best riding possible and to return home safely to our family and friends!
Zacs Tracs has been teaching all across western Canada, and into the States since 1999. Click into the map to see if we've been to your town! Interested in hosting a course? Click Here to contact us!
Testimonials From Our Students
Well worth it! I recommend it to everyone I talk to about riding in the mountains. I don’t think there is anything you can do to improve the field training, it was awesome! I feel a lot more confident now about riding in the mountains, thanks Lori and crew. — Doug R. Yorkton, SK
I took this course to learn how to never have to use my safety gear and to be confident using it if the time comes….the night classes were tough but Lori has a way of keeping things entertaining…keep doing what you do zacstracs! The added confidence in using my beacon was huge as it used to just be a decoration around my neck. — Jodi B. Prince George, BC
I would definitely recommend everyone takes this course. I plan on mountain sledding for the rest of my life, so its not a big deal to give up a couple riding days, for a course that could keep me riding for the rest of my life! It was very beneficial to practice with the beacons and do lots of scenarios, to sharpen your beacon skills. I was amazed at how many people in our field training class had no idea how to work their beacons. Practicing shoveling and proper techniques was also very beneficial, teaching how to efficiently shovel with a group and not to trample your victim. Taking the course is necessary for your whole riding group! I can go take the course, and all my riding buddies can be thankful that I have an idea of how to assess terrian, snow pack, and i have good skills on how to efficiently dig one of them out in a slide. But how fair is it to me when i pay the cash go spend a day learning the skills, when no one else does. Its like I have learned the skills which could save your life, I would appreciate the same courtesy and respect, that you should have the same skill to save me. Taking this course will do me no good if I am buried in an avalanche and all my riding buddies don’t know what to do! Taking the mountain practical session didn’t ‘waste’ a riding day… it actually gave me 2 extra days of riding that i would not have had. The wife wanted me to take the course, so when it was offered i got to take an extra trip this season that was not planned, once out there, after the course was complete we stayed for an extra 2 days and rode! Guys use this course to your advantage and get an extra trip out of the season, tell your ol lady you have to go for the safety and skills you will learn, then stay a couple extra days! — Jared B. Black Diamond, AB
The AST1 is a key practical session that you need to take. It covers proper beacon search technique and use, how to locate multiple burials and properly dig them out. Having an actual scenario reinforces the skills you have learned and increases your confidence, allowing you to be a leader in an emergency situation. If you could only take this part of the course, do it. — Lindsay B. Edmonton, AB
Avy class…wasted money and missed out riding day?! NOT AT ALL. No money spent foolishly, only knowledge gained. Best part was seeing my buddies agree it was the best sledding money ever spent. — Keith T. Prince George, BC
I took AST 1 three years ago which was a huge eye opener for me, this January I took the course again to refresh my memory and sure glad I did, the beacon training was great to go over again and also refreshing the memory on snowpack and being aware of conditions will help me be safer in the backcountry, I strongly recommend taking this course if your new to mountain riding and also for those who have taken the course in the past to take it again, there is so much to learn from this course! Thanks ZACS TRACS! — Trevor Sonnenberg
This was an awesome course. Almost to much to absorb in two days. Knowing what to look for has changed our whole group’s riding perspective. Very highly recommended, even to those who just ride cutblocks and rolling hills. You never know when and where these skills will come into play. These skills are proven to save lives. Thank you Zacstracs. — Keith T. Prince George, BC
Absolutely worth the time! Actually going over the terrain, working with beacons, probes and shovels. Understanding how to work as a group. All these things give you more confidence knowing you can use your gear in an emergency. The best part was that my son who is a very good rider has a better appreciation for avalanche dangers and when to change his riding plans based on the danger ratings. — Darlene G. High River, AB
Awesome experience! It certainly could be the difference between life and death. I wouldn’t want to be in the position of not knowing how to rescue my buddies in avalanche situation. This gave me the knowledge to get them out ASAP! But most importantly, avoiding the risk in the first place! Thanks gals and guys for your commitment in making sledding safer! — Darren S. Grande Prairie, AB
Learning is never a waste. Hands on using your rescue equipment. The rescue scene in the AST1 Field Session helps you understand what you're up against. — Dwight W. Stony Plain, AB
The AST1 Course was awesome, well worth taking a weekend away from riding. Search, familiarity exercises with the beacons was very good. Awareness of terrain and surroundings good eye opener. I already plan to attend another avalanche class next year! — Terry S. Grande Prairie, AB
The AST1 Field session was the most beneficial part of the course. It is unfortunate that some people don’t follow up the classroom session with the second day. Riders that miss out on the field course MISS out on the value of the course all together. Step up to the plate guys and get ‘er done! — Lou M. Grovedale, AB
Thanks again Lori, I am truly thankful you were able to come up. I spoke to several people after you were booked to come, they all said the same thing, that you put on a great course and were the best, you did not disappoint. I have had 14 different texts and emails since I got home. All said the same thing, thanks and that they enjoyed it a lot. Have a safe trip home. Keep your skis off the snow pointing straight up to the clear blue sky. Have a great winter too! — Rick 'C' , Fort St John
Hey Lori, I just wanted to tell you that your field session in Valemount was awesome. We could of had some more snow, but both Mac and Dallas were great instructors and very knowledgeable. Looking forward to doing the 1.5 or possibly the AST2 course next year. Thanks again! — Jason F
I learned more in a day at your class than so far sledding in the mountains. To motivate others to attend... explain that this class has real relevance to what we do and how it pertains to riding in the mountains. — AST1, Edmonton
I am so proud that so many people came to this class from our small town. I am much happier seeing everyone learn to be preventative instead of seeing them in their suits at a funeral saying “If only….”. — Rod P.
I was so excited that such a well known group would consider coming to a small town. Really enjoyed meeting all of you and thanks you again for being so accommodating. All ages have enjoyed your presentation. Hope to see you again someday. — Stacy B.
I enjoyed learning about how to evaluate terrain and understanding hazards. Don’t be static, learn what you need to survive. Equipment is useless without the proper training. — AST1, Ft McMurray
Lori, I think you and Randy have done a great job of getting the information across in a manner that people can understand. Everybody should have this training. The best part is your mock avalanche, I couldn’t believe how much that opened my eyes to what we should prepare for and how in our riding group it has changed how we do things. One thing we gained was that after we left our avy packs on our sleds and you pointed it out, was that we now won’t take our packs off but rather have a buddy get our stuff out (if a buddy is present to help). We have now taken time to get to know each others packs. — Dean W. Kitscoty, AB
I took the AST1 course for the second year, this time with my sons. Top notch instruction and would recommend everyone taking it again, keeps it fresh in the mind. Thanx Lori and Randy. — Darryl Bellwod
I ride snowmobiles in the back country with my soul mate. I am a strong female and I can deal well in crises situations, so I thought we were in good shape. After this weekend’s course with Zac’s Tracs, I realized just how wrong I have been. Within the 2 evening classroom sessions and the one field sessions I realized how much danger the one I love was truly in because I was so uninformed. I cant believe how much risk we were putting ourselves in by not doing avalanche training. After the weekend with Lori, Randy and Mac, it is amazing how different I look at things. I always knew there were risks, I just never knew how we close we were to them. Looking back, knowing what I do now, I cant say that I could have found and saved the most important person in my life if I needed to. If I was put to the test, I would have failed because what I thought I knew, I didnt. Because of this course, I am now able to make smart decisions before a ride and during, rather than guessing and thinking that I am reading the weather, snow and bulletins right. I am now more confident in my equipment as I know and understand it and used it in the course. The team at Zac’s Tracs opened my eyes. I learned so much! I am 100% sure that before this course I would not have responded well to a emergency, but reacted, and it could have very well cost me my soul mate! It is scary just how unprepared we really were and that we really had no idea. Thank you Lori, Randy and Mac for your knowledge, experience time, attention and fantastic classes. You and your entire Zac’s Tracs Team are truly saving lives and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Side note… friends of ours took a course in the area that we live. The course they took was less than 1/4 of the price of the course we took and we were looked at as if we were stupid for paying so much… till we started talking. They have no idea about most of the things we learned in our course. Lets just say that people I ride with, the people that could be the difference in my survival, I want them to be Zac’s Tracks Trained! Thank you everyone at Zac’s Tracs you are the best!!! — Dawn R
A friend recommended this class and for me it exceeded expectations. I feel that it is a lifesaving course. — AST1, Ft. McMurray
I think the content was very thorough. The example of how little O2 you have when buried was shocking. — AST1, Saskatoon
Is an avalanche course really worth my time?I was a little skeptical at what was actually going to be taught but the AST1 classroom session was definitely beneficial and I will push everyone from our group to take it. With the instructor being involved and energetic it kept everyone’s attention and the importance of what was being taught. The AST Class and Rescue Workshop were definitely worth attending. Actually learning the proper techniques made the time worth it.
I've been riding in the mountains for yearsWe’re all bad for the “I know how to work my beacon and probe and of course know how to shovel!” attitude but I admit I was proven wrong. I had the understanding of it but when it’s potentially lives at stake no time or money can replace knowing that your knowledge can save lives. Have to thank everyone at ZacsTracs for the awesome day. Rod, Sylvan Lake, AB – Nov 6, 2016
The AST level 1 course you instructed in Chetwynd was very informative, and I commend the both of you for doing a really good job. Keep up the good work, for I sincerely feel that you are saving lives. The knowledge received from this course has definitely changed the way I will look at snow for the rest of my life.
Best Money Spent Ever!All the information from the classroom session and all the practice from the field session was amazing. Our group is now turning the screws on the remaining members from our area that did not attend. I personally feel that anyone who is thinking about sledding in the mountains, or even experienced riders, should seriously consider taking this course. It was the best money I've spent, EVER! I think most would agree that the unstable snowpack and all the attention with the unfortunate avalanche victims this year has really raised avalanche awareness, and what better year to learn and study snowpack conditions. I will admit that some of our (my) previous riding habits, and lack of knowledge could have easily made us a statistic. Maybe we were just lucky no incidences occurred. For all those who have suffered a loss of a loved one due to an avalanche, my heart goes out to you. I hope I never have to use the knowledge from this course to rescue a fellow friend or family member. That said I do feel a lot more comfortable knowing that I now have formal training to recognize the dangers, and warning signs, and what to do if trapped victims in an avalanche has occurred. Thanks again ZacsTracs, a definite two thumbs up from me! I wish you all the best, and I hope our paths cross again in the future. Sincerely, Rick Sawchyn, High Prairie, AB
Family needs avalanche training before heading to the mountainsMy son wants to ride with his dad in the mountains and I decided that they had to take an avalanche class before he would be allowed to go. I started to research the AST1 providers and every one that I talked to kept mentioning one name in particular. I looked into ZacTracs Avalanche Training and consistently received great feedback. I was so excited that such a well known group would consider coming to a small town. Really enjoyed meeting all of you and thank you again for being so accommodating. All ages have enjoyed your presentation. Hope to see you again someday! Stacey B., Hines Creek, AB
Zac's Tracs Edmonton avalanche course certainly caught my attention!My son William and I attended the AST course on November 10th in Edmonton …. I’m the guy from Ontario :) I just wanted to pass along my thoughts on the course and the day we had with you. First and foremost WELL DONE we truly appreciated the course content, presentation of information and your skill as a facilitator. Your passion for what you do was evident in every breath you took as you guided us through the course material. I don’t often see an instructor with such enthusiasm so it was much appreciated as it makes a significant impact on how we learn, again well done! We both left the course feeling much better about our riding plans going forward, the term look for the “Gorilla” has taken on a whole new meaning and we are thankful how that was presented, in fact the phrase “Look for the Gorilla” will be branded on our sleds this year just as a reminder! I’m looking forward to day two for the field work to complete this portion of the AST program. Congratulations on a fine job, thanks for caring about guys like myself that in past have overlooked some critical safety items, we are true believers thanks to your course! As a personal observation the avalanche burial simulation put me over the top and created such a hunger for the remaining content. Excellent way to get things started … you definitely got my attention! All the very best to you and Zac Trac’s Team going forward …. Brad C., Ontario
This by far is the better of the two avalanche courses that I have taken.I was very impressed with your knowledge of the subject and the level of enthusiasm that YOU maintained during the course. You clearly have a solid understanding of avalanche theory and are able to transfer your knowledge in a clear and concise manner.
I commend you on your use of analogies and your ability to make complex subjects easy to understand.I really enjoyed the analogy of the serial killer compared to an avalanche. You know they are out there and you have to look for the clues and hope you find them before they find you. Again, the course structure was fantastic and your enthusiasm was contagious. You were able to capture my attention at the start of the day and carry it through to the end. I look forward to taking your field day in the near future and I know I will not be disappointed. Thank you again and keep up the great work. It was a pleasure to take this class from you and I will recommend it to everyone I know. Darryl E., Regina, SK