trip
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9
Intermediate Mountaineering Expedition
Activities
  • 5 days alpine climbing course
Accommodation
  • 4 nights camping
Meals
  • 4 Dinners
  • 5 Lunches
  • 4 Breakfasts

5 Days$1799USD

Hit the trails with confidence

COVID-19 safety measures
Read our Covid-19 travel policy and what we're doing to keep you safe

Remote adventures
means social distancing comes naturally

Small groups only
Guided group sizes are strictly limited to maximum 16 people, average of 8-10


 
 
Trip Code: ICC

Trip highlights


  • Spectacular helicopter access to base camp
  • Guide ratio 1:4
  • Develop the skills to begin your own ice climbing career
  • A warm and comfortable base camp setting with enough rooms for dining and instruction
  • Steep ice weeps and free standing pillars – enough for the strongest ice climber
  • Expert instruction from NZ’s leading NZMGA qualified guides
  • Specialist equipment available for hire if needed
  • Price includes ground transport, one way helicopter access and 4 nights accommodation
  • Learn the correct techniques for the placement of ice screws and belays, ice climbing techniques with ice tools and crampons, route selection, basic avalanche awareness and rescue techniques
  • The perfect course for fit and motivated people who have a background in basic mountaineering or rock climbing, and wish to extend their skills onto steep ice

Ice climbing at Wye Creek&#160;-&#160;<i>Photo:&#160;Mark Sedon</i>

Learn to climb steep ice on our specialised ice climbing courses. This five day course focuses on developing lead climbing skills based at a top level ice climbing venue - Wye Creek, near Queenstown. We base the course from our Expedition Base Camp tent so you are right at the ice when you wake up each morning.

We start the course (weather permitting) with a helicopter flight into one of New Zealand's best ice climbing areas. Our Base Camp tent is large enough to fit all the participants at once, so we have an all weather venue for cooking and theory sessions. We estimate that by staying actually at the climbs, you add another 3 hours ice climbing time to each day. You'll be impressed by what you have achieved at the end of the week!


Each day of the tour will be a mix of actually climbing, learning new skills and then getting to test them out! Although only 5 days you’ll be amazed at what you’ll learn and what you’ll get to climb during the tour. By basing ourselves right at ice we reckon that you will get in around an extra 3 hours of climbing each day then if you were having to travel in each day! We spend as much time in the mountains as possible actually climbing routes whilst developing skills. Initially we concentrate on developing and reinforcing skills in a contained environment and then we move on to more challenging routes during the course. The emphasis of the course will be on the longer and steeper ice routes involving fairly long days where your guides will progressively introduce a wide range of skills and techniques. Weather plays a major factor in any mountain experience and the New Zealand’s Southern Alps get their share. We intend to run the course according to schedule however as we at the whim of the weather we often have to adjust our program accordingly. This in itself is an important lesson for the group in versatility and objective selection based on the present and forecast conditions. So the following itinerary is just to give you a rough idea of what to expect - but basically, it will be as much ice climbing as we can fit into 5 days! The course begins at 9.00 am on day one at the Heliworks Hanger, Queenstown Airport, Tex Smith Lane, Queenstown. Following introductions, your guide will present the course syllabus outlining how the week will operate. We discuss, then organise, our personal and group equipment (bring all your gear with you, including those items you are not sure whether to include or not). Equipment pertinent to the course will be discussed and you can get all the advice you need concerning equipment from the guides. Rental equipment will be fitted at this time and final purchases can be made. We then load up the helicopter for our flight into the Remarkables Range, directly to the ice climbing area. Leaving our gear in the base camp tent, we’re off climbing!

Meals:  L,D

Each morning - get up, get dressed, have coffee, have breakfast, find ice axe, crampons, boots. Walk to bottom of the ice, realise you have left something behind (eg. rope; helmet; climbing partner)! Walk back to tent, get the missing item or wake up your rope mate, back at the ice, try to remember how the tie-on works (rabbit comes out the hole, around the back of the tree and…..). Rest of each day, spent climbing!

Meals:  B,L,D

Get up, get dressed, have coffee, have breakfast, find ice axe, crampons, boots. Walk to bottom of the ice, realise that today you are actually departing for down valley! We plan to walk back to our vehicles in a 5-hour walk to the road-end, followed by a short drive into Queenstown. Alternatively, course members can opt to fly out by helicopter at additional cost (weather permitting). The course will be finished by 5pm on Friday.

Meals:  B,L


Inclusions

  • All meals and snack foods whilst on the trip, from 8.30 am on day one until the course finishes on day 5
  • NZMGA qualified guide (1:4 ratio)
  • Guide Fees
  • Group equipment such as ropes, tents and stoves and accommodation in our expedition-style Base Camp
  • Course manual (A Climber’s Guide to NZ Mountaineering Techniques, by Guy Cotter and Mark Sedon)
  • Department of Conservation fees (CA/155/Gui)
  • Aircraft access, egress by foot.
  • use of climbing gear including climbing harness with adjustable leg loops, carabiners, belay device/descender, prussics & slings, helmet, ice axe, ice hammer, crampons
  • NZ Goods and Services Tax (GST)

  • Travel to/from Queenstown
  • Personal expenses
  • Travel insurance
  • Personal mountaineering equipment not mentioned in inclusions (can be hired)
  • Any accommodation and meals not mentioned in the itinerary

About Your Leader

Professional and experienced mountain guides run the course. We have a commitment to ensure the highest standard of instruction and guiding practices and we only employ guides who share in our philosophy. Our guides will offer you the best possible learning experience, and a safe and enjoyable time. An open and helpful approach is encouraged within the group to help communicate and reinforce the learning process. Our guides are all NZMGA and /or IFMGA internationally qualified. They have been trained and assessed through the New Zealand Mountain Guides Association, and operate to the high standards and guidelines set out by the association.


Departure dates


Notes

NB:
1:1 courses are available on request, contact us for costs and options

Dates or itinerary don't fit?

Create a custom made itinerary for the perfect adventure. Choose when you travel, what you see and where you go.

Total Priceper person from

$1799USD

Options & Supplements*
    *Prices listed are per person

Essential Information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed Ice Climbing Course trip notes which contains all the essential information you need to know before booking. Once you’ve booked, we will supply you with a Pre-Departure document which contains a detailed gear list and other important information to help you prepare for your adventure ahead.


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Why travel with us

Award Winning Adventures

Enhancing your journey with authentic experiences, genuine cultural exchange and real exploration are the focal points on all of our adventures. In 2019, we were crowned by our peers as the best in adventure travel at The Travel Awards in Sydney.

Thoughtful Travel

Responsible travel is at the heart of every program we offer as a fundamental and long held philosophy. When you book one of our 100% carbon offset adventures you’re supporting true sustainability in the protection of local communities, natural environments and wildlife.

Ultimate Value

 When you book one of our adventures, you will receive quality services at the best prices with plenty of inclusions. There are no hidden costs, single travellers don’t pay more and you’ll enjoy many ‘extra touches’ that ensure your holiday is excellent value for money.

Positive Impact Travel

By joining this trip you are directly supporting positive impact projects in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

We’ve offset the carbon emitted by this trip by purchasing credits that support important projects that address the UN’s seventeen SDGs, like reducing poverty, affordable and clean energy, reducing hunger, clean water and climate action.

Proceeds from this adventure purchase carbon credits through the world’s largest and most awarded carbon project developer, South Pole, which are invested into projects accelerating the transition to renewable energy sources in developing countries.

Supported projects are based on internationally recognised standards and are third-party audited. They entail a series of positive impacts on the ground, which benefit local communities and ecosystems, that are aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

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