Intro To Basic Mountaineering: Whistler & Squamish BC

Intro To Basic Mountaineering

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Intro to Basic Mountaineering Canada


  • Cost:
  • $399

Location: Whistler  Duration: 2 Days  Fitness: Good  Ability: Intermediate  Prerequisites: Crevasse Rescue & Glacier Travel  

This 2-day Intro to Basic Mountaineering course teaches you to begin exploring the mountains with confidence.You will learn the basic mountaineering skills needed to safely climb a snow and ice peak. The Coast Mountain Ranges are renowned for mountaineering, with many peaks reaching over 8,000 feet!

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The following dates are available for this course.

If you would like different dates, or to book a private course, please contact us.

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Course Information

The Coast Mountain Ranges are renowned for summer mountaineering, with many peaks reaching over 8,000 feet! Join Mountain Skills Academy for our Intro to mountaineering course and begin to explore the mountains with confidence.

In this course, you will learn the basic mountaineering skills needed to safely climb a snow and ice peak.

On day one we will focus on skill development and on day 2 we will put your skills to use by climbing on a snow and ice alpine peak.

Although not a pre-requisite, it is highly recommended that participants take a crevasse rescue course prior to taking this course as most peaks require a glacier approach. If you would like to take a comprehensive mountaineering course that includes instruction in glacier travel and crevasse rescue, consider our Mountaineering Super Course.

 Why Mountain Skills Academy & Adventures?

Best Venue, Perfected Curriculum.  MSAA IFMGA Mountain Guides have developed a carefully crafted curriculum designed to provide participants the perfect foundation for rapid future progression. The guides work with a lesson plan which ensures each participant receives all of the intended skills. This is a very interactive course, participants will demonstrate skills, they will put these into action with mentoring, and they will then perform them in a leadership role.

World class destinations throughout the Coast Mountain Range.

Flexible terrain. We have the flexibility to choose the area with the best conditions for the objective. Sometimes we will be in one mountain range for part of the course and move to another for the rest of our course – so you have the best learning experience. On the Coast we also have the great benefit of lift accessed convenience at Whistler Blackcomb or Sea to Sky Gondola. This allows us quick and easy access to world class terrain and maximizes the time available for productive and active learning.

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

Day 1

  • Meet and greet. Safety discussion and gear check
  • Drive to location or take gondola lift – TBA
  • Lunch at around noon
  • Course lessons
  • End of Day. Debrief, discuss the following day.

Day 2

  • Departure time will be determined at the end of Day 1
  • Climb on a peak suitable for the objective and current conditions
  • The objective is not necessarily to reach a summit but is planned for participants to put the skills into practice
  • Lunch at around noon
  • End of day. Trip debrief, next steps

We are happy to help source rental gear you need.

Weather conditions constantly change in the alpine. Be prepared for heat, cold, and rain. There are several rain-protected climbing venues we can use, but it is essential that you pack enough clothing to be prepared for any weather conditions. So please dress according to the forecast for the course days.
We recommend the following:

  • Head lamp with extra batteries
  • Soft shell type climbing pants
  • Insulating top and bottom under-layers and socks
  • Synthetic or wool t-shirt
  • Mid layer fleece top
  • Weatherproof shell jacket
  • Down or synthetic insulated “puffy” jacket
  • Warm hat and ballcap
  • Warm mountain or ice climbing gloves
  • Light gloves
  • Sunglasses and sunscreen
  • Daypack 35-45 L
  • Camera
  • A hiking pole is recommended


  • Mountaineering boots
  • Harness
  • Helmet
  • Mountaineering axe
  • Crampons
  • Belay device
  • If you have taken a crevasse rescue course, bring your crevasse rescue equipment

If you own your own climbing gear we highly recommend that you use it as it is best to be familiar with your own equipment. Please let us know when you register.

Guide Gear

  • First aid kit, splint, blister kit
  • Cell phone/satellite phone/InReach
  • Guide’s tarp
  • Programmable radio
  • 60m single ropes
  • Ice screws
  • Snow picket
  • Appropriate alpine rack depending on objective (alpine draws, screws, gear, pickets, etc)

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Buddy Up!

Share the cost of the guide! Let us know which activity you would like to do and we'll do our best to find you a buddy.

Important Information

We strongly recommend you purchase insurance for Trip Cancellation, Emergency Evacuation and Adventure Sports Coverage (some backcountry adventures are excluded from coverage).

Emergency Evacuation and Medical Insurance

This coverage provides you with emergency air rescue if required and full medical. Parks Canada provides free evacuation within the Parks and if you are a Canadian resident your medical will be covered by your provincial health plan (except ambulance/air ambulance transport). We strongly recommend international visitors purchase this insurance.

Emergency evacuation insurance is compulsory for all our hut trips, as these typically take place outside of Parks Canada’s jurisdiction.

Trip Cancellation Insurance

To prepare for unforeseen circumstances we strongly recommend purchasing Trip Cancellation Insurance at the time of booking your trip. Trip Cancellation insurance covers many scenarios to reimburse you for cancelled trips outside of your control.

Learn about training courses at the academy: 

Our recommended insurance provider is Tugo.Com who can be reached via the following:

All prices are quoted in Canadian dollars and are exclusive of a 5% tax (GST). Prices are subject to change. Guide gratuities are not included in fees.

Our preferred method of payment is by Mastercard or VISA. We also accept bank e-transfers and cash.

• For 1-2 day adventures/courses booking must be paid in full.
• For longer adventures/courses a deposit of 50% is required at the time of booking.
• The remaining balance is due 30 days before the start date.
• Bookings made less than 30 days before adventure/course must be paid in full.

Next day bookings are taken up until 5pm the day before any tour or course. *Subject to guide availability

Full Terms & Conditions

Mountain Skills Academy takes mountain safety very seriously, however there is no way to completely mitigate risk in alpine environments. Prior to undertaking any of our courses or trips we require you to sign a waiver.

Mountain conditions are extremely unpredictable and can change at short notice. Our guides endeavor to undertake the routes and/or peaks that our clients desire, however our decisions will be impacted by conditions. Unfortunately we are not able to offer refunds if conditions are not suitable to undertake a particular route on the day you have booked. We will however make every effort to take you out for the best day possible given the conditions.

Applicable to all tours and courses*: If conditions force us to cancel a course or trip we will do all we can to accommodate you at another date. If this isn’t possible we will offer a full refund. We reserve the right to decline rescheduling dates based on availability.  *Does not apply to first aid courses.

Late Arrival Policy

Guests arriving more than 15 minutes late for an activity forfeit 100% of the tour price. Tours leave promptly; it is recommended to arrive 15 minutes early to sort out gear and sign waivers.

Adventures Cancellation Policy

Half Day and Full Day Tours

  • With less than 48 hours of the tour start time:  Cancellation will result in a 100% forfeit of tour price, no rescheduling.
  • With more than 48 hours notice:  We will reschedule or refund with no penalty.
Multi Day Programs
  • 2 Day Programs: Within 10 days cancellation notice will result in a 100% forfeit of tuition, Outside of 10 days: $25 penalty to reschedule per booking or full refund.
  • 3+ Day Programs: 30 days cancellation notice will result in a 100% forfeit of tuition, Outside of 30 days: $75 penalty to reschedule or full refund.
  • Customized Trips: 30 days cancellation notice will result in a 100% forfeit of tuition, Outside of 30 days: $75penalty to reschedule per booking or full refund.

**On all multi day trips pre-arranged add-ons are non-refundable (food, accommodation, etc).

Courses Cancellation Policy

1-2 Day Courses

  • Within 10 days of the course date: Cancellation notice will result in a 100% forfeit of tuition
  • Outside of 10 days: $75 penalty to reschedule per booking or full refund.

3+ Day Courses

  • Within 30 days of the course date: Cancellation notice will result in a 100% forfeit of tuition
  • Outside of 30 days: $75 penalty to reschedule per booking or full refund.

**If you are able to find someone else to take your place on a course, please let us know as we are more than happy to transfer bookings.

Minors (under the age of 19) and custodial groups (youths affiliated with an institution where a parent or legal guardian is not present on the trip) may register for certain trips and courses with a letter of consent from parents or legal guardian as well, they must sign a waiver and have a parent or legal guardian sign a waiver. Further, we abide by the Parks Canada Custodial Group winter backcountry policy as outlined here.

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