In the late 1980’s, Wayne Flann, a patroller from Blackcomb Mountain, had a vision of educating guests, staff and locals about skier safety within and outside the ski area boundary. He created the Blackcomb Institute for Skier Safety (BISS), a non-profit organization in Whistler, BC.

In 1994, the National Ski Patrol (NSP) Outdoor Emergency Care Technician program was introduced in Canada and adopted by both the Whistler and Blackcomb Ski Patrols. In the mid 1990’s Avalanche Canada created a Recreational Avalanche Course for the general public. In the following years, there became a demand for these courses by residents and businesses within Whistler and Squamish and across British Columbia. In 2000, Gwen Milley and Suzanne (Kenney) Clarke incorporated the BISS and renamed it the Pacific Alpine Institute. In September 2020, we transitioned ownership of the company to Catherine Malette. We are still situated in the Sea to Sky Corridor and maintain and share the original vision for creating such an organization.

Over the years, the Pacific Alpine Institute has delivered outstanding educational courses with strong governing bodies, nationally recognized course standards and instructional materials, videos, student manuals and websites. Our courses maintain a high standard of professionalism. Over 2000 students have been through our programs from all over the world.

The Pacific Alpine Institute encourages personal growth in ourselves and our students. We are a small, independent company that provides a personal service that larger providers cannot fulfill. We strive for excellence in service, attention to detail, organization, and professionalism. We hope you join us in advancing your outdoor education!




Pacific Alpine Institute