Anyone going into the backcountry should know the basics of avalanche awareness; this session will focus on the basics of understanding why avalanches happen, and how to avoid them; taught by staff from the Northwest Avalanche Center. 7 p.m. Monday at Mountaineers Tacoma Program Center, 2302 N. 30th St., Tacoma. Free. tacomamountaineers.org.
Join the Black Hills Audubon Society for some birding and noshing; beginning birders are welcome to join the group, start birding at 7:30 a.m. Saturday at Bayview Thriftway, 516 Fourth Ave W., Olympia; breakfast will be at 9 a.m. at Thriftway. For more information, call Deb Nickerson at 360-754-5397, blackhills-audubon.org.
Harbor WildWatch will hold a Pier Into the Night program; equipped with an high definition underwater camera, volunteer divers will travel to the bottom of Gig Harbor Bay in search or marine creatures. 5-7 p.m. Saturday; Skansie Brothers Park, 3207 Harborview Drive, Gig Harbor. harborwildwatch.org.
The Quadrantids is an above average shower, producing up to 40 meteors per hour at its peak; the meteors are thought to be caused by dust grains left behind by an extinct comet known as 2003 EH1. A nearly full moon will hide all but the brightest meteors, but the shower will reach its peak Saturday night and into the morning of Jan. 4.