Intro to Ice Climbing

Per Person: $399

Private (up to 6 People): $2149

Learn all there is to know about this extreme sport!

Location: Whistler/Pemberton

Duration: 2 Days

Prerequisites: None

Fitness Level: Good 

Our Intro to Ice Climbing course is designed for those with no previous ice climbing experience, rock climbers and mountaineers looking to develop basic ice climbing skills. This course is designed by expert ice climber and mountain guide Eric Dumerac.

Our carefully designed curriculums have been crafted into a number of programs designed to help every level of student reach their full potential. 

Find out more: The Academy



NEW DATES for Winter 21/22 are now available! Day 2 will follow directly on from Day 1.

Private Course:

Book a Private Course and have a guide to yourself!

Book Now

Private Course:

Book a Private Course and have a guide to yourself!

Book Now


This comprehensive two day ice climbing course focuses on providing students with a safe and reliable ice climbing system that promotes fast progression. Utilizing the latest in modern equipment, techniques and instruction, critical lessons include hazard management, climbing commands, ice terminology, route selection, ice grades, and more.

Day 1 will cover our 10 lesson plan. Day 2 we will focus on fine-tuning ice climbing technique, critical skills are covered including placing and removing ice screws, building reliable anchors, making and assessing v-thread anchors, rappelling on ice, rope handling, leading ice (with mock lead safety) and setting up top-ropes.

To prepare climbers to safely venture on their own additional skills include avalanche & weather forecast, determining proper route choice, using guidebooks, other equipment needs, how to best rack up, and more.

By the end of the weekend you will not only have had an incredible two days but you will be ready to head out on your own and take on some of the world’s best routes right here in the Coast Mountain Range.

Lift Ticket: A lift ticket is required for day 1 & possibly day 2 (see itinerary for more detail) of this course.

**All Courses subject to a minimum number of participants. 48 hour notice will be given if the minimum number has not been reached.

Day 1: Will start at 8:00am at the Mountain Skills Academy Office and finish around 4:30pm.

The guide will get everyone to sign a waiver before having a safety discussion and getting everyone to perform a gear check. Day 1 will be located on Blackcomb mountain which requires access via the gondola. A pass can be purchased through MSAA at checkout.

To climb on Blackcomb you must be at least an intermediate skier or snowboarder to access the climbing site.The guide will also choose the location and give an overview of the day's objectives. The day will end at approximately 4:30pm with short debrief.

Day 2: The location for day 2 will be discussed on Day 1 with your guide. Possible locations possible include: Duffey Lakes, Whistler Valley or Blackcomb Mountain depending on conditions and student ability.

The guide will review what was covered on Day 1 and give an overview of the day's objectives. The day will end at approximately 4:30pm with a course debrief and what the next steps will be.


Escape Route Logo

If you require rentals or need to purchase equipment, we have teamed up with the experts at the Escape Route Alpine Demo Centre. Follow the link HERE to purchase or rent gear for this course!

Individual Equipment
  • Mountaineering, Ski or snowboard boots
  • 2 technical ice axes
  • Crampons
  • Helmet
  • Harness
  • Belay Device
  • Water, lunch & snacks
  • Sunscreen
  • Warm socks (wool/synthetic recommended)
  • Insulating jacket (down or similar)
  • Shell jacket (Gore-tex or similar)
  • Shell trousers
  • Warm gloves and shell gloves
  • Warm hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Chemical toe warmers
  • 30L day pack (we can provide if you don’t have one)

Ice Tools are provided by Mountain Skills Academy & Adventures, but if you have your own, please bring these with you so you can practice using your own gear.

Day 1:
  • Equipment
  • Environment & onsite safety
  • Crampons
  • Ice & tools
  • Ice movement, stability, stance and balance
  • Knots
  • Belaying, rope management, commands and safety systems for top rope climbing
Day 2:
  • Evaluate Weather & CAA Avalanche Forecast
  • Ice screws, protection placement stances, v-threads, bolted anchors, screamer draws, v-thread hooking tool, screw quick clips
  • Rappelling system
  • How to best rack up and prepare for lead climbing
  • Mock leads
  • Cleaning ice screws

Click HERE for the full curriculum


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Well regarded as Whistler’s leading avalanche skills educator, MSAA provides an exceptional Avalanche Skills Training Level 1 (AST 1) Course.

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This two-day clinic is for ice climbers whose ability level is between intermediate and advanced.