The Mountain Skills course is an ideal choice for people interested in exploring mountainous terrain and wanting to develop their confidence in the mountains.

It’s a great way to learn the essential skills you will need to enjoy the mountains in the UK safely. Whether you’d like to feel more confident using a map or you have ambitions to climb Everest, the Mountain Skills course is a great first step.

Delivered by our qualified and experienced mountain professionals, the course is nationally accredited and developed with Mountain Training, the awarding body for qualifications in walking, climbing and mountaineering.

The courses takes place entirely outdoors and cover a range of topics including what clothes you should wear, what equipment you should carry with you, how to plan your day out, what routes you can take, understanding the weather, how to navigate using paper and digital mapping and dealing with emergencies in the outdoors. Our experienced instructors will share their knowledge with you and answer any questions you have about exploring the hills and mountains of the UK.

We run regular public courses in the Snowdonia and Peak District National Parks throughout the year or we can provide a bespoke course for you and your family, small group of friends or whole organisation. If there are two or more of you then we’ll happily put on a private course just for you on a date and location that suits. Prices start from £75 per person on our public courses and private courses start from £300 for up to eight people.

Our Hill and Mountain Skills courses take place over two days and you’ll need to arrange accommodation and we can often help with recommendations if you’re stuck. The courses are held entirely outdoors so be sure to bring everything you need with you. More information is provided nearer the date.

Frequently Asked Questions

Mountain Training sets a limit of eight people however we usually have far fewer people on our courses so you’re guaranteed the attention of our tutors.

Both the Hill Skills and Mountain Skills courses take place over two consecutive days and typically run from around 8am to 5pm each day.

The Mountain Skills course requires a moderate level of fitness. It is a practical course where you will be walking for a good part of each day, and learning along the way. Any health issues should be talked through with your tutor prior to the start of the course.

The Mountain Skills course is a clear progression from the Hill Skills course. The main difference being that it’s run in the high mountain areas of the UK. As such there is a requirement that you have some experience of hill walking prior to attending the course and also have a reasonable level of fitness. An example of reasonable fitness might be someone who actively participates in sporting activities on a regular basis such as jogging or cycling. If you are unsure about your fitness or experience then speak to one of our course Providers, and if in doubt over which course to attend, the Hill Skills course may be a more appropriate choice.

Of course. The requirements for the Hill and Mountain Skills courses are specified by Mountain Training, the awarding body for qualifications in walking, climbing and mountaineering and can be found below. Don’t be too worried if you don’t understand all the terminology as that’s what our instructors are there for but it might help you decide which level to start at.

Planning

  1. Overview of the mountain walking areas of the UK and Ireland
  2. Use of walking guidebooks and online resources
  3. Route planning
  4. Health and fitness considerations for mountain walking

Walking Skills

  1. Walking techniques and additional equipment
  2. Managing pace for a day walk
  3. Nutritional considerations for mountain walking
  4. Movement skills over steep or loose terrain

Clothing and Equipment

  1. Mountain clothing overview
  2. Footwear selection for mountain terrain
  3. Equipment selection and functions
  4. Seasonal differences in clothing and equipment selection
  5. Additional emergency equipment

Weather

  1. Effect of weather in the mountains
  2. Obtaining a mountain area weather forecast
  3. Effect of weather on mountain route planning

Navigation in the Mountains

  1. Use of different maps and scales
  2. Map features and symbols
  3. Measurement of distance on maps
  4. Calculating walking time in mountainous terrain
  5. Use of Grid References
  6. Pacing and timing in mountainous terrain
  7. Introduction of basic use of GPS devices in mountain areas
  8. Methods of relocating in mountainous terrain
  9. Compass selection and features
  10. Poor visibility navigation strategies

 

Environmental Knowledge

  1. Understand the impact of humans in mountain areas
  2. Gain an understanding of the mountain environment
  3. Environmental considerations when mountain walking
  4. Good practice associated with mountain walking
  5. Understanding the role of different organisations related to mountain walking

Hazards and Emergency Procedures in the Mountains

  1. Identifying potential hazards in mountainous areas
  2. Managing risk while mountain walking
  3. Gaining an understanding of common mountain walking incidents
  4. How to call for help while in mountain areas
  5. Introduction to the role of Mountain Rescue teams

More activities

Hill Skills – Peak District

Mountain Skills – Snowdonia

Introduction to Mountain Navigation – Peak District

Bronze NNAS Navigator Award – Peak District