5-Day Rock Climbing Course

Course Overview

FOR 2020, AS PART OF COVID-19 REGULATIONS: Climbers will need to self drive until further notice. Further information will be sent upon sign up.

I had a great time and I learned a lot on this trip. Both Guides were great guys and I had a great time and would definitely recommend to others. It was a great experience again from AA that I expect from you guys, 3rd trip with you guys was again good one.

Rock climbing is currently one of the fastest growing sectors of the outdoor industry and for good reason. It’s a fun and rewarding experience in its own right, in addition to being an excellent way for mountaineers to improve footwork and prepare for more technical summits. Our five day rock climbing course is designed for beginner to intermediate climbers; this is a great course for a budding outdoor climber or an avid gym climber looking to take their skills outside. Due to the small group sizes, the guides are able to structure the course to meet the needs of each individual climber, while placing a premium of safety and safe climbing practices. We choose locations with minimal approach time to maximize our time climbing and developing skills. Although the days are long, our graduates often find this to be a very enjoyable course; a refreshing change of pace from our demanding glaciated climbs.

This course provides a crucial skillset necessary for approaching challenging mixed terrain climbing. Whether you have an existing background in glacier climbing, sport or gym climbing, or are an avid hiker, this rock course will change the way you view and assess variable terrain.

Students who complete the five day training course should walk away with a firm understanding of the basics of rock climbing including the ability to tie knots, belay, and rappel safely. Most of our students will also be able to cover setting up their own top-rope anchors, understand the mechanics of lead climbing, improve their risk assessment, practice basic rock rescue systems, and enhanced movement skills. Although not the focus of this course, we usually attempt at least one multi-pitch climb to familiarize students with longer climbs.

Course Objectives

The purpose of this course is to improve terrain assessment and climbing skills of the students. This includes actual movement skill on technical rock routes in addition to a base understanding of the safety systems that are used in rock climbing. These are all transferable skills to snow and ice and many of our graduates find this course to be extremely beneficial for their future mountaineering objectives such as Denali, The Matterhorn, or Everest.

Key Skills:

  • Learning balance and energy efficiency in rock climbing. Slab, crack, and face climbing techniques.
  • Learning a variety of knots and hitches common in climbing.
  • Belaying and rappelling.
  • Safe anchor construction from pre-established bolts, traditional gear, and natural placements.
  • Evaluating top rope sites and establishing top rope climbs. Helping climbers visualize the route, how it unfolds, and managing potential risks.
  • Basic rock rescue techniques including escaping the belay and passing a knot.
  • Ascending a fixed line.
  • The mechanics of lead climbing and mock lead scenarios.
  • The theory and practice of multi-pitch climbing.

Reading List

This is a highly recommended shortlist and we would be happy to pass on a longer reading list for those interested. These links will bounce to Amazon.com with reviews.

Mountaineering: Freedom of the Hills
Don Graydon (Ed.), Kurt Hanson (Ed.), Mountaineers Society, Mountaineers Books
Rock Climbing: Mastering Basic Skills
Topher Donahue, Craig Luebben, Mountaineers Outdoor Experts, Mountaineers Books
Climbing Anchors
John Long, Bob Gaines

Excellent!  Small class and individual attention from a real pro, can’t be beat.  Excellent Guide, great focus on safety, much was learned.  Far better training than I have received from other outdoor organizations.

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Partners & Accreditations

Alpine Ascents International is an authorized mountain guide service of Denali National Park and Preserve and Mount Rainier National Park.
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