20151007 File 1 FINAL STAND ALONE LA AND HA LOGO 22 MAY 2015 608x277 Highland Ascents | Scottish Winter Mountaineering Course

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Highland Ascents is the sister company of established Lake District guiding company, Lakeland Ascents. Highland Ascents deliver high quality, professionally instructed courses in the Scottish highlands, based out of Fort William and Glencoe on the west coast.

Scottish Winter Mountaineering course

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Classic winter mountaineering terrain

Are you an experienced winter walker who is keen to progress into steeper and more technical terrain to enjoy the fantastic positions that Scotland’s winter mountain environment has to offer? Based out of Fort William and Glencoe in the West Highlands, our 3-day Scottish Winter Mountaineering Course will give you the skills needed to move safely on technical ridges and easier gullies of around Scottish Grade I to III. Learn to look after yourself and your mountaineering partner on classic routes such as Glencoe’s Aonach Eagach and Ben Nevis’ Ledge Route.

Our professional instructors will cover areas including:

  • A refresher of movement skills, crampon work and ice axe use on steep ground
  • A refresher of navigation skills and the assessment of avalanche risk
  • Ropework for ascent and descent on Grade I terrain
  • Ropework and movement on technical mountaineering ridges at around Scottish Grade II
  • Ropework and movement on steeper gully lines at around Scottish Grade II/III


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Outstanding winter vistas and learning environments

This is an open course where you will join other like-minded clients, but never at a ratio that exceeds 1:4 on day 1 and 1:2 on days 2 and 3. We can also offer you a private course if you would prefer benefits of 1:1 instruction, such as being able to learn at your own pace and having the course tailor-made to your requirements and skill level. Prices for both options are below.

A typical itinerary for this 3-day course follows:

Day 1 (1:4)

  • Selecting and carrying the appropriate kit for the winter mountain environment
  • Refresher of personal movement skills on steep ground (around Scottish Grade I)
  • Refresher of ice axe use and arrest
  • Core winter navigation skills, avalanche awareness and forecasting
  • Creation and use of snow anchors in ascent and descent, such as buried axe belays and snow bollards


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Experience classic ridges on Ben Nevis

Day 2 & 3 (1:2)

  • Guided winter mountaineering routes (technical ridges or gully lines, dependent on conditions)
  • Winter mountaineering ropework relevant to terrain (protecting rocky steps, cornices and steep snow)
  • Efficient movement and route choice
  • Mountaineering decision making and risk management


Dates and prices: are shown in the table below. 

CoursePrice per person
- open course
Price per person
- private 1:1 course
Scottish Winter Mountaineering - 3 day course

- 11th & 13th January 2016
- 22nd to 24th February 2016
- 21st to 23rd March 2016

Click here to make a booking or to find out more. You can also contact us by telephone on 07702 942980.


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Spot the mountaineers on the ridge?

Ages and abilities: The winter environment can be extremely challenging, so this course is for adults only and for those who already have experience of winter walking in the high mountains of the UK. Fitness is important as days are long, approaches generally tough and packs heavy.

Group sizes and ratios: Our instructor to client ratio never exceeds 1:4 on day 1 and 1:2 on days 2 and 3

Kit: We will share a kit list with you when you book, but you will need warm and waterproof clothing and ideally B2 or above crampon compatible boots and crampons. You will also need a walking/alpine axe and basic climbing kit. All kit is available to hire from a partner company. We can offer advice on all kit at booking.



Guided rock climbing