December 27 - January 3, 2006 

Wednesday 27

Avalanche Clinic

We all know snow quality improves beyond the groomed tracks of mountain resorts, but unless you're experienced and capable in backcountry conditions--or straight crazy--there's not a whole lot of sense in veering off the beaten path. Fortunately for those of us who wish we could claim "experienced" to visit some glorious powder, REI presents the first step: a backcountry travels hazards and avalanche incident response clinic.

The clinic will cover the basics of avalanche incident response, including information on avalanche rescue scenarios, equipment, leadership, complex/multiple burials and effective organization of tour participants. Kirk Bachman, Sawtooth Mountain Guides' founder, part owner and lead guide, will instruct the clinic. An American Mountain Guides Association Certified Apline and Ski Mountaineering Guide, Bachman has extensive experience in both climbing and guiding in backcountry mountain terrain.

An avalanche response field day will also be offered on Saturday, December 30 at Bogus Basin. See Saturday for more details.

7 p.m., FREE, REI, 8300 W. Emerald, Boise, 322-1141, www.rei/com/stores/boise.

Friday 29

And You Thought Americans Weren't all that Hardcore

American Hardcore, a documentary about the evolution of the hardcore punk music scene, which screened at Sundance Film Festival in 2006, opens today at the Flicks. The film features the scene's early pioneers, including Black Flag, Bad Brains, Minor Threat and SS Decontrol with interviews, concert footage, mayhem, blood, punk rock and angst.

The Flicks, 646 Fulton St., Boise, 342-4222,

Get Thee to Bogus

This Friday kicks off Bogus Basin's annual Freeride Ski Series with the Night Rail Jam competition. Each year, hundreds of eye-goggling viewers and participants come together throughout the season to cheer and compete in various snowy sports.

The Night Rail Jam is the first of four events to be held throughout the season. Other competitions include Winter Games of Idaho Slopestyle, February 17; Annual Quarter-Pipe Big Air, March 10; and Spring Slopestyle, March 31. Entry fees are $20 per person and those who go big and enter all four events will receive a special edition Bogus Basin Freeride Series T-shirt. And, of course, there will be heaps of prizes and loads of SWAG (and for those of you who never knew: that's an acronym for "stuff we all get"). The jam offers three participant categories, including skiers and snowboarders 14 years old and younger, 15-18 years old and 18 years and older. All competitors must wear a helmet.

Registration for participants is 4-6 p.m. on the third floor of Simplot Lodge, $20 person. Rail Jam starts at 6:30 p.m. with 25-minute jam sessions for each group (age/gender), Bogus Basin Resort, 2600 N. Bogus Basin Rd., Boise, 332-5144 or 367-4397.

Saturday 30

Everyone on the Bus: It's a Field Trip

No, we're not heading to the park for baseball ... this time you'll want to get off the bus weather equipped and ready for a field day in the snow. Kirk Bachman will lead an Avalanche Incident Response Field Day in succession to a clinic on Wednesday, December 27 (see Wednesday's pick). While the clinic will cover the basics on paper, the field day will to bury you in the thick of it, offering participants hands-on experience in snow-pack identification, live scenario practice response and examples of beacon use. First-time beacon users and backcountry enthusiasts with some experience are encouraged to attend.

9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., $50, registration requires attendance at the Backcountry Travels Hazards and Avalanche Incident Response clinic held on December 27 and a Bogus Basin ski pass. Bogus Basin Resort, 2600 N. Bogus Basin Rd., Boise, 332-5144 or 367-4397.

More Snowy Clinics

Bogus Basin's Nordic Team hosts their third-annual Cross Country Skiing Skate Clinic taught by top-notch local coaches Tomas Patek and Chris Haunold and U.S. Ski Team coach and Sun Valley native Pat Casey. Casey was the 2000 recipient of the Alf Engen Sportsmanship Award, placed second in the U.S. Cross Country National Sprint Relay and earned All-American and All-Conference honors in 1998.

Cross country ski-skating takes place on tracked grooves that skis fit snugly into, allowing the skier to flow quickly, with more fluidity, along the trail. And Bogus' Nordic Center has lit up the night skies with solar-powered lights this year for beautiful night rides.

Downhill lover or snowbird, everyone should check it out. Once you get a taste--and proper direction from the pros-- you might be in the grooves forever.

Two sessions offered: 10-11:30 a.m. and 12:30-2 p.m., $39 per session, Bogus Basin Resort, 2600 N. Bogus Basin Rd., Boise, 332-5144 or 367-4397.

Sunday 31

have a Happy, safe New Year!

Check out our calendar, music guide and roadshow for some leads to great happenings around town. And after you've found your destination, blown-away the masses with your dazzling looks, charming style and welcomed 2007 with a kiss, be sure to get a cab. There are too many cab companies to list, so just grab a phone book or ask the bartender to call you a cab. You don't want to start the year off on the wrong side of the bars.

2007, already? Scary.

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