I took a 4 day avalanche class in Tahoe and I'm still a bit reeling from it.
the vague details are:
I attended a 4 day avalanche course put on by Babes in the Backcountry (http://babesinthebackcountry.com) where the instructor is one of the Avalanche Forecasters at Squaw Ski resort. this is actually multiple blog entries but in short.
Drove to Tahoe in a storm (with chains)
Spent part lecture time in a sweet Kings Beach house (on the edge of Lake Tahoe) learning about what causes avalanches.
Learned how to use avalanche beacons (think geocaching, but you HAVE to locate it in 15 minutes or the person buried is likely dead - yikes).
Watched a Squaw rescue exercise complete with 7-8 crew members and an avalanche dog.
Got dragged onto ski slopes way above my ski skill level (they had one person showing me the easier ways - but still scary).
Dug a snow pit in a light storm at the top of Squaw and took a lot of readings and measurements. Yes this is total snow geek city.
Same day, drove back in a different chains-only storm with snow dumping around Blue Canyon.
Fell into bed after an 18 hour day.
Hopefully much more to follow when I get my head together.