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  Winter mountain hiking skills  

Date 10-11 January
Max guide-client ratio 1:6

Winter mountain hiking skills weekend

A weekend based in the Cairngorms and around Drumochter, you'll learn the hill skills needed to go winter hiking with us in the Scottish mountains.

Primarily designed for the summer walker keen to aim onto the Scottish hills in winter with us, these two days introduce and develop the basic skills required to get the most out of mountain hikes with snow and ice.

General outline of trip :
Moderate hiking  Day 1 Classroom 1 hour, on the hills in snow and on ice for 4-5 hours
We'll start the day off with a classroom session where we'll get to know each other and we'll discuss 'winter-ising' your hillwalking kit and the gear you should buy. We'll also have a look at how planning a winter day is considerably different from planning a hike in summer.

Off to the hills in search of snow and ice next, we'll look at how we progress on snow and ice, gradually introducing ice-axes and crampons. Onto a slope, we'll try out different self arrest techniques.

Moderate hiking  Day 2 Winter hike for 6-8 hours in Cairngorms or Drumochter
Our second day is designed as a lead-on from Saturday and will consolidate skills, whilst having some fun. The location of our second day will be confirmed after our skills day and will be determined primarily by the weather - we'll try and find a few Munros with some great winter conditions. We'll look at snow and ice structures and examine how avalanches happen and, most importantly how to avoid them !

Throughout both days we'll be keeping a check on our winter navigation and safety and discussing other topics including forecasts, wind-chill and snow injuries.

Except for some summer hillwalking familiarity, no prior experience is needed. A reasonable level of fitness is recommended for these days. You'll need your general hillwalking equipment suitable for the conditions. Advice on winter gear is here. We can hire out ice-axe, crampons and helmet at a cost of £15 per day if needed.

Alternatively, should you wish to buy, see the panel at the bottom of this page for recommended gear.

Recommended hotels and guest-houses in the area :
Recommended hostels and campsites in the area :

Contact us via our enquiry page, email or phone us on 0131-466-8152.

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Previous trips on our blog :
Lochaber, December 2013
Cairngorms, November 2013
Cairngorms, January 2013
Perthshire, February 2012
Cairngorms, January 2012

Video on YouTube :
Cairngorms Winter Skills 2012

In Lochaber
In the Cairngorms
Heading up Gulvain
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