01690 720214

Winter Mountaineering

By Martin Chester

Whether you are a committed winter walker, going winter mountaineering or even a winter climber, this could be for you. So much of a winter day out in Britain involves sensible mountaineering decisions. The secret to a safe day out in winter is often to think ahead a bit more than summer. Here are a few ideas:


Stop to gear up (or have a brew/change layers) in safety. What's above you? Could that slope avalanche upon you? Could that other team fall or knock things on you? There is rarely 'safety in numbers' in winter time. Be organised with that kit as well. Put something down in Winter and it will be gone!


Winter Mountaineering

Put your crampons on sooner rather than later. It's so easy to delay the decision, and put it off, linking one snow patch to another boulder field etc. Before you know it you are teetering around on a steep frozen slope trying to balance on one foot, putting crampons on with one hand. If you think they might help put them on ASAP. That said:

Think Ahead About Terrain/Route

As always - think ahead. Don't stop to put crampons on if you could go round the tricky patch. Is this your spikes on for the whole day? Don't forget good 'old fashioned' skills like cutting a few steps to cross an awkward patch, or cutting a stance to gear up in. They knew what they were doing those old timers!

Think Ahead About Stopping

Think ahead again - it's nice and sheltered here, but what about round the corner, or the other side of the ridge, or over the top of the corrie? If you are about to head into the full force of the weather, stop before you do. Put an extra layer on now, have a drink and some food, have a look ahead at the navigation. You may even take a crucial bearing now - while you're comfy. It beats battling that map and compass in a storm once you are on the plateau.


Winter Mountaineering

Think ahead about conditions. If things are great where you are - where are you going next? As we travel around the mountains things get colder as we get higher, more windy as we round the corner, more deeply drifted as we reach a sheltered place, etc. Where are you going next - will things be getting safer or worse, what about later on, or your way off the hill?


Got A Date Available - Need An Adventure To Match?

Contact our team on 01690 720214 or email - they will be happy to help you find something perfect.

Adventure Sports
Coaching Conference

Adventure Sports Coaching ConferenceOur inaugural Adventure Sports Coaching Conference will seek to explore the role of coach developers in adventure sports performance.


Christmas and New YearOn behalf of all the team at Plas y Brenin, we would like to wish you a very Merry Christmas and a H....


Scottish Winter Courses 2018Starting January 2018, our Scottish Winter courses are timed to make the most of the incredible wint....


Winter WarmersAs the nights begin to draw in and the temperature starts to drop, Plas y Brenin are pleased to offe....


Peak Performance For Plas y Brenin Paddling TeamWe are delighted to announce that we've launched an exciting new partnership with kayak clothing man....


BMC Women Outdoors Week 5-15 Aug 2017Come and get active for the BMC's Women Outdoors Week here at Plas y Brenin. We have talks, activiti....

What's On In Our bar?

Our friendly and lively bar is open to the public. From talks and lectures to film nights and live music, there's always something going on. Find out what's coming up next here

Adventure Sport
Summer Camps (Age 12-17)

Summmer Camps For Young People Aged 12-17Young climbers, mountaineers, paddlers and mtb riders aged 12-17. Develop your outdoor skills with our top coaches on one of our residential summer camps.

Enhanced Learning Credits

Enhanced Learning CreditsThe Enhanced Learning Credit Administration Service offers funding for armed forces personnel. Plas y Brenin is able to accept ELCAS funding for a few specific non residential courses.

Weather Forecast, Tides and Surf Conditions

Find out what the weather's doing in North Wales over the next five days.

Adventure Map

Working alongside UCLan
to educate
outdoor professionals

University Of Central LancashireFind out how we are working with one of the country's top universities to develop lasting careers in the outdoors.