/ How can I get into winter climbing?

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BradleyWhite - on 26 Sep 2013
Hi guys

After Christmas I would like to start climbing some winter mountain routes if the conditions are right but I don't really know where to start.

My current experience -
I climb around E1 single pitch / VS mountain routes and I have completed my SPA & ML Summer training. Last winter I climbed a few easy scrambles in the snow but at the time I didn't have technical tools or crampons.

My kit -
Sportiva Trango Evo's & BD Serac crampons.
BD Vipers & full trad rack.
Mammut Genesis half ropes.
Petzl helmet & head torch.
Emergency shelter, first aid kit and compact snow shovel.

Apologies if this subject has already been covered. Any advice or tips on getting started would be really appreciated, thank you in advance.

Many thanks
Bradley


Muel - on 26 Sep 2013
In reply to BradleyWhite:

Read Winter Climbing+, then read all the other winter books.
climber34neil - on 26 Sep 2013
In reply to BradleyWhite: bearing in mind where you are then going along to the winter symposium at PYB would probably be a good starting point or getting on a winter skills course with them would be good ( much better than the "make it up as you go school of mountaineering )
In reply to BradleyWhite: If you've done summer ML training you shouldn't be a total numpty at navigation and whatnot, so I'd say read lots of books (libraries are good for this ;), find someone else who wants to go winter climbing, and errr... well, go winter climbing! Be sensible, don't try anything too hard and I'm sure you'll have fun and be fine.

If you live in N Wales your in the best place south of Glasgow, so you'll get lots more chances than most!
Dave Kerr - on 26 Sep 2013
In reply to climber34neil:
> ( much better than the "make it up as you go school of mountaineering )

Never did me any harm.

Kind of depends on your approach to new stuff. Do you want to work it out yourself or do you want to pay for a course and hopfully avoid some of the more elementary pitfalls / learning opportunities.
highclimber - on 26 Sep 2013
In reply to BradleyWhite: if you live in north wales or can get there easily enough id be happy to take you out doing some classic routes.
BradleyWhite - on 26 Sep 2013
Thanks for all the information guys.

I have just ordered a few winter climbing books and I will get in touch with PYB over the weekend to find out more about the winter skills courses.

Thanks again everyone
Bradley

In reply to highclimber:
Thank you for the offer, if its not too much trouble that would be awesome!
Tim Chappell - on 26 Sep 2013
In reply to BradleyWhite:


Just hook up with a partner who's climbed in winter before, show up in the Norries on January 30th or thereabouts, and join the queue... At that time of year you should very likely get some decent action in the white stuff, and if you can climb E1, you'll be off and running in no time.

Just bear in mind these two differences from rock:

1) After you've climbed it, rock does not generally fall down within the next 3 months. Ice/ snow generally does. BE PARANOID.

2) In belayed rock-climbing on a route where there's gear, falling off is quite often an option. In belayed ice-climbing on a route where there's gear, falling off is usually not an option. DON'T FALL OFF.

Enjoy!
Dave Perry - on 26 Sep 2013
In reply to BradleyWhite:
Find someone whose got a little more winter experience than you. Then off you go. It's how we all learned once.
Robboj - on 26 Sep 2013
In reply to BradleyWhite:
Hi tradley, I'll play! I'm keen to do a bit more winter stuff this year but would still class myself as a novice winter climber. Let me know if you're up for it & take it from there..

Cheers, rob (lee's mate)
abr1966 - on 26 Sep 2013
In reply to BradleyWhite: get to somewhere like Glencoe and get out on the hill....good climbing in winter starts with time spent being out in winter conditions....walk lots and build up bit by bit. Get in the clach and see who's doing what the next day and tag along!
MarkDavies36 on 26 Sep 2013
In reply to BradleyWhite: You could try here: http://www.glenmorelodge.org.uk/free-training.asp or try Plas y Brenin. Both organisations require mock students for their MIC assessments each winter.

Two days of free winter climbing training on grade I/II ground from folk who are going to try their best to give you a brilliant couple of days out, overseen by someone else. What's not to like!?
Jamie B - on 26 Sep 2013
In reply to BradleyWhite:

To echo what others have said - you need to find more experienced climbing partners. That's far more important than anything else.
In reply to BradleyWhite: your profile says you're based in North Wales...whete abouts?
join a club, its the best way to meet loads of people with various levels of experience.
If you're in NE.Wales, we'd be more than happy to meet you

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