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Introduction to Alpine Climbing Skills

What You'll Learn

If you don't have a lot of previous backcountry experience or only have rock or ice climbing experience course participants will learn:

  • Basic backcountry navigation and travel skills.
  • Backpacking and backcountry camping skills like site selection and water treatment in alpine areas.
  • How to more safely manage low difficulty but high consequence terrain like 3rd and 4th class scrambling sections.
  • Route finding and belay management.
  • Transitioning between scrambling terrain and technical terrain.

After taking this climbing course participants should feel capable of climbing basic alpine climbs such as more difficult 14ers or routes with a mix of scrambling and pitched climbing. We generally recommend this as a two day overnight course for the best learning experience.

Alpine Climbing Instruction Rates and Availability

1 Instructor Half Day (4 hours) Regular Day (6 hours) Full Day (8 hours)
1 Students $329 $389 $449
2 Students $269 $329 $389
3 Students $219 $269 $329
4 Students $169 $219 $269
2 instructors to keep low ratios for the best experience!
5-8 Students $139 $169 $219

Rate Information:

Rates are per person, e.g. 3 people for a Regular Day would be $269/person for a total of $807. Trip start times are custom but generally we recommend 9AM starts for most ice climbing December through March to make the best use of time and ice conditions.

Discount Information: We appreciate our guests but discounts are limited to the following and cannot be combined with any other offer.

Early Bird Discounts and Last Chance Pricing: Book early and save! Schedule any rock climbing trip a month or more in advance for a 10% discount. Any trip booked with less than 48 hours notice incur a $100 convenience fee.

Bundle Pricing: The ultimate way to get started climbing! Purchase 3 or more days of climbing guiding or instruction at once for a 10% discount. Schedule at your convenience.

Ready to book your experience or have more questions?

Follow Up Climbing Classes

Basic ice climbing technique and skills such as tying in and belaying are fundamental skills that open the door to the next steps in gaining the independence to climb ice on your own. The following classes are good next steps.

Required Skills

No previous experience is necessary. If you have previous backpacking experience that will cut down on the amount of time needed to learn some of the backcountry and climbing specific skills..

Best Places to Learn Introductory Alpine Climbing Skills

There are several locations that work well for this course due to reliable, high quality ice with minimal approaches. The venues we recommend are:

Climbing over significant amounts of terrain calls on a variety of skills. While frequently there is a focus on technical terrain a lot of alpine climbing takes place outside of that. With most backcountry rescues being called when people get lost or while scrambling 3rd and 4th class terrain it shows a knowledge gap for many strong climbers. 

Here we cover a variety of entry level backcountry skills such as packing a pack, selecting a campsite, and how to manage resources for climbs that may take multiple days. We also cover a variety of skills for managing low difficulty terrain that often makes up a big portion of more advanced climbs. Techniques such as terrain and body belays as well as knowing how to transition into technical pitches on harder climbs. Combined with rock and ice climbing skills will turn anyone into a well rounded alpine climber.