The French Pyrenees offers a wonderful alternative to the Alps or Scottish Highlands for the aspiring winter mountaineer. Whether you’re aiming to trek and climb in winter mountain environments close to home or have your sights set on Himalayan peaks, it is hard to find a better playground to learn the basic skills and requirements for winter mountain travel.
By undertaking a closely supervised mountain journey, this course will increase your understanding of this fantastic environment and build your confidence to be able to move in winter conditions safely and independently, and your understanding of the atmospheric and geographic conditions around you.
Throughout the course you will also gain valuable insight into expedition nutrition, clothing and winter camp craft.
The course covers such skills as:
• Safety in the winter environment
• Self arrest techniques
• Assessing avalanche hazard
• Basic navigation
• Ice axe and crampon work on varying terrain and conditions
• Building snow and ice anchors and belays
• Moving together over snow and ice
• Construction of snow holes and weather forecasting
• Basic ice climbing techniques
• Ascent of a mountain in winter conditions
A greater understanding of expedition travel will be gained as further skills such as expedition nutrition, clothing and winter camp-craft will be demonstrated on the journey phase of the course.
"Despite having done other similar courses, I still learned new things. There was a lot of variety, with ice climbing, snowshoeing etc. and it was geared towards what sort of expedition I'd like to undertake in the future i.e. more self-sufficient. "