Learn Activities Winter Walking

Winter Walking


Hill walking in winter covers a spectrum of difficulty and technicality, so there’s no reason to put your walking plans on hold. However, winter conditions are usually defined as any time when the ground is covered with snow or ice. More ambitious winter routes in freezing conditions do require a few extra skills and equipment that aren’t needed for the rest of the year, in particular the use of an ice axe and crampons (spiked boot attachments enabling you to walk securely on hard ice and snow).

These extra difficulties and skills make winter walking an exciting challenge. More challenging conditions mean that if something does go wrong, the result can be much more serious. Before heading out into the mountains in winter, be sure to have the skills to deal with poor weather conditions, freezing temperatures and a few short hours of daylight. If you’re going up high, or there’s a freeze forecast, you’ll need an ice axe and crampons.

As well as requiring extra kit the snow-covered mountain environment contains a host of extra dangers – avalanches, cornices, whiteouts or snow bridges, to name a few – which require a much greater range of knowledge and awareness to deal with than in summer.

One of the best ways to get yourself up to speed is to take a course in winter skills, either with a mountain instructor, or a centre like Glenmore Lodge in the Cairngorms or Plas y Brenin in Snowdonia. You’ll also get a great insight into what to expect, and how to cope, by watching our Winter Essentials DVD.

WATCH: BMC Winter Skills Films

FIND out more about Winter Skills training

READ Hill Walking In Winter

READ Do I Need Crampons For Winter Hill Walking?

READ Ten Things To Know Before You Go Winter Hill Walking