Winter navigation is challenging. Understanding how to navigate in winter is a crucial skill in order to avoid many of the hazards found on the mountains in winter. Problems often encountered include poor visibility, avalanche prone slopes, cornices, freezing conditions and snow covering features such as streams and paths. It’s often sited as a main cause of mountain rescues.
Now included with the course is a free OS 1;50000 Map for the chosen region.
This course will take you through the basic techniques of navigation and how to apply these to the winter environment. An example itinerary for the course follows. This is subject to weather, length of course and conditions.
Before we set out we’ll discuss maps, weather forecasts, avalanche forecasts and route planning.
Whilst on the hill we will look the features available in winter, the hazards and contour interpretation. These can then be used with five D’s of navigation (below) to put together the legs on our journey.
- Description – what we’ll find on our route
- Direction – which direction to head
- Distance – how far we will be travelling
- Duration – pacing and timing of legs
- Destination – how we will know we have arrived
We’ll also look at route choice to avoid steep terrain, navigation strategies; boxing, aiming off, attack points and dog legs.
During the course of the day you’ll get opportunities to put this into practice as well as relocate.
Accommodation is not included.
This course runs in the West Highlands near Fort William.
This is an open course for a maximum of four people per instructor. If you’d like one to one instruction or a course in a different region of Scotland please book my bespoke winter skills course instead.