/ best way to start winter/ice climbing

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rock_hopp5r - on 09 Nov 2013
Really want to get into this part of the sport this winter! All advice welcomed :)
James90 - on 09 Nov 2013
In reply to rock_hopp5r: move to scotland...
duchessofmalfi - on 09 Nov 2013
Unless you have suitably equipped and experienced friends go on a course or hire a guide (and take a friend) - apart from anything the basic survival skills will come in extremely handy even if you have a lot of winter mountain walking experience. If you haven't done any winter walking it is a good way to start. Consider a Coniville course if you fit the bill.

Get reasonably fit, get up early and move quickly.

You'll soon want gear (assuming you don't go off the idea) and it costs a packet. Get a sensible boot and crampon (G12) and nothing super technical but get axes you can use leashless or modify a 2nd hand pair of leashed ones - you will not regret this (don't drop them). First season borrow as much as possible.

Don't bother with a deadman or ice hooks

Assume that everything will get wet through, everything will take twice as long as you thought, that you'll rip your fancy new trousers / gaiters within 5 minutes and that you'll go up and come down in the dark. Learn how to avoid avalanches, how to navigate blind and what remains palatable to eat semi frozen.

duchessofmalfi - on 09 Nov 2013
And "move to Scotland" isn't bad advice!
rock_hopp5r - on 09 Nov 2013
In reply to rock_hopp5r: cheers for that I would love to move to Scotland but for now I can travel, I've been looking into the courses and guides and thinking that's me best bet!
squirrel00 - on 10 Nov 2013
In reply to rock_hopp5r: check the pyb website the bmc are doing discounted winter skills courses , did the ready to rock with my daughter in the summer and it was well worth it
ice.solo - on 10 Nov 2013
In reply to rock_hopp5r:

Winter climbing works best doing courses.

First do a winter skills course to get up to speed and be sure you like it.
Then, if you do, a series of locksmithing, pyrotechnics and offensive driving courses so you have the money to pay for it.
rock_hopp5r - on 10 Nov 2013
In reply to rock_hopp5r: cheers will look at the bmc courses! I know it's expensive but that doesn't put me off :)
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Offwidth - on 10 Nov 2013
In reply to rock_hopp5r: what is really expensive is all the petrol and all the extra risk from going to places that are out of nick or out of range of your skills. I knew a few muppets who were dead proud of their DIY efforts yet those in our clubs who used guides and experienced pals progressed way faster and go so much more out of their valuable time and money. winterr climbing isn't cheap if you can afford to do it you can afford to do it well.

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