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BASS Chamonix Ski School


BASS Chamonix is part of the British Alpine Ski School network which currently covers 10 resorts in France. The network has been in operation for over 25 years delivering quality and professionalism to our enthusiastic English speaking clients.


All BASS Instructors & Guides are fully qualified with full equivalence paperwork to work legally in France.  All our staff have years of experience delivering at all levels including training other aspirant instructors and guides. The whole team are passionate about skiing and we look forward to sharing this passion with you in Chamonix this season

British Association of Snowsport Instructors IASI

Derek Tate

Derek Tate, BASS Chamonix

Principle Author of Parallel Dreams Alpine Skiing.


BASI ISTD (British Association of Snowsport Instructors, International Snowsports Teacher Diploma), Full French Equivalence

IASI Back Country Security Award (Irish Association of Snowsports Instructors)

AIARE Level 1 (American Institute of Avalanche Research Education)

UKCP Level 2 Alpine Coach 

Diploma Professional Studies Education, Sports Coaching (Heriot Watt University)

I began skiing quite late in life, at the age of seventeen but was always a very keen sports person. I grew up in Dublin and in those days skiing was not a big thing in Ireland! Football, Karate and Athletics were very much my sports. However I was introduced to skiing through my school in 1983 and enjoyed a couple of trips to Pamporovo in Bulgaria, joined the Ski Club of Ireland, started skiing regularly at the dry ski slope and never looked back….. 

And today I am still totally in love with the sport and “life in the mountains”. Over the years I have been involved in racing, race coaching, ski school, instructor training and have taught just about everything from 2 year olds to top level instructors. I have been lucky enough to work in many countries around the world including the USA, France, Austria and of course Scotland to name but a few. 

During those many years of ski teaching I also fell in love with Chamonix and the Mont Blanc region and now this has become my home and the base for our ski school. Every day I spend in the mountains of this region I like to stop and take in the awesome scenery and I know that I chose both the right career and one of the best places in the world to live and work.

Before starting BASS Chamonix with my wife and co-director in season 2004/05, I worked in Courchevel for three seasons and before that managed an artificial ski slope in the UK for four years. I love working in all aspects of the sport and have been heavily involved over the years in training and assessing ski instructors. I am currently Head of Training & Educational Development for the Irish Association of Snowsports Instructors and a Tutor for Snowsport Scotland .

I look forward to meeting you this season and sharing with you my passion for skiing and the mountains and where could be better than the home of skiing – Chamonix!


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Shona Tate

Contributing writer in Parallel Dreams Alpine skiing.

BASI ISTD (British Association of Snowsport Instructors, International Snowsports Teacher Diploma), Full French Equivalence

AIARE Level 1 (American Institute of Avalanche Research Education)

UKCP Level 2 Alpine Coach

I was brought up in a skiing family, my parents were instructors in Scotland and my older brother was into racing. I was soon following my brother around the mountain hot on his heels in all terrain and in all typical Scottish weather! 
After spending several years in the Scottish Ski Team in the mid 80’s I gained my first instructor qualification which enabled me to teach on artificial slopes. Loving the sport and loving teaching has now brought me to Chamonix, the centre of skiing history. Everyone in Chamonix shares the same passion for the mountains & the outdoors, we are one big family.
When I head off to other parts of the Alps to Train other budding instructors for BASI or IASI (Irish Association of Snowsport Instructor) I know that I will soon be back and look forward to the spectacular drive back into the Valley looked on by the spectacular Mt Blanc.
I deal with the bookings 
(when I am not teaching!) with Sarah here in Chamonix so we look forward to hearing from you soon.

Dee O'Neill

Full French Equivalence

IASI Alpine Trainer (Irish Association of Snowsports Instructors)

AIARE Level 1 (American Institute of Avalanche Research Education)

I was introduced to skiing at a relatively early age and spent winters zipping around the slopes. I quickly became addicted to skiing and being from Ireland this did prove a slight problem – no snow! In order to ski regularly I joined the Ski Club of Ireland where I was able to ski on more regular basis. Getting involved at an early age introduced me to racing and this proved a useful stepping stone in training towards becoming a ski instructor. After receiving my first level qualification I realised that I wanted to develop more as a skier so I furthered my training which led me to gain my professional qualification and enable me to live in the Alps as a professional ski instructor. 
I was also heavily involved for a number of years with the Irish Association of Snowsports Instructors (IASI) as Chairperson which is the Irish body responsible for training and assessing ski instructors to international standards. I am still involved now as an IASI Alpine Level 1 Trainer. With such a passion for skiing, cycling and running I couldn’t think of a better place to be than Chamonix!

Fred Dibblee



Full French Equivalence


A ski season in New Zealand was my launch pad into ski instruction.   16 Australians in a “Beginners Starter Pack” was a shock to the system but I instantly loved it.  12 years later, many resorts, many qualifications, many clients and I still look forward to the winter coming.


Skiing is such a thrill seeking sport I can’t help but smile when clients make those breakthrough moments.   Whether it’s holding their first snowplough or first time powder turns. You know what they’re thinking - “When can I book my next ski trip!”


When I am not teaching I still love being in the mountains.   Ski touring, rock climbing, ice climbing, mountaineering- Chamonix has it all and I love it! - Why didn’t I come here 12 years earlier!


I look forward to skiing with you all soon.







Alison Culshaw - Ski Performance For Mountaineers Course Leader

      Alison Culshaw

About our Instructors

All our Instructors and Mountain Guides are fully qualified and have French Equivalence with the Carte Professionnelle card which allows each individual to work in France as an independent Instructor/Guide.