The Course Notes provide detailed information and background for Adventure Consultants' Chamonix and Cogne Ice Climbing Courses.
You can view the notes online by clicking the image or download a pdf by clicking the link below:
Chamonix and Cogne Ice Climbing Week 2023
1 guide to 2 climbers maximum or 1:1.
Adventure Consultants guides are BMG/NZMGA and / or IFMGA-UIAGM qualified mountain guides. They are professional mountaineers and operate to the highest industry standards.
Being a technically proficient climber alone is not enough to work with us; our standards demand that trip leaders are great guides as well. You will find your guide friendly, approachable and focused on providing a safe and enjoyable trip in line with your objectives and comfort level.
Success with the highest margin of care is always a hallmark of our approach; promoting the realisation that even extreme pursuits such as high altitude mountaineering can be undertaken safely.
Adventure Consultants only employs IFMGA qualified guides for European ascents and courses and this is the only certification that is recognised in the French Alps. In order to gain these qualifications guides must undergo rigorous training and assessment on climbing skills, instructional skills, avalanche training and assessment, wilderness first aid, rescue training and much more. The qualification takes many years to attain and ensures you are getting a world class professional service.
Head Office Support Team
Running successful journeys and expeditions is more about experience, knowledge and strategic management than any other factors. As an organisation, we place a substantial amount of time and resources into ensuring our trips are well planned and supported. You can be assured that the AC staff will provide you with friendly advice and knowledgeable support throughout the planning stages of your trip and we will be there to provide backup while the trip is running.
Hayley Furze, Client Liaison
Hayley joins the AC team with a wealth of experience working in the tourism and hospitality industry along with a love of travel. She works as Client Liaison on a number of our European and international ascents, treks and expeditions.
Our registration form requests that you advise us of any medical problems you may have and if you are on any medication. Any information you supply will be treated as confidential.
Level of Experience Required
The 2 day course is designed for people who are new to ice climbing and always wanted to give it a try. The duration of the course is designed to enable you to develop good basic skills from which to launch your ice climbing obsession, should you so wish!
Each of our trips is individually rated according to its physical and technical difficulty, displayed in the icons towards the top of each trip page. You can click on the accompanying question mark for additional descriptions and the full run-down of our grading system is available on our Difficulty Ratings page.
Preparing for Your Trip
To make the most of your climbing experience we encourage you to work on your fitness prior to the trip. For general mountain fitness you will find that training on hills with a 10kg + pack on is the best preparation for the mountains, with the aim of building your endurance. Ice climbing does require an amount of upper body fitness so time at the rock gym will help get you honed for the ice. Your guide will be attuned to your fitness levels and will select appropriate routes for your ability. See our Fitness Training Programs for information on how we can help you prepare for your trip.
We strongly recommend that you take out trip cancellation and travel insurance to protect yourself in case of injury or mishap prior to/or whilst on our trips.
While our focus is on safety and our track record supports this, the mountains do have hazards and there is the potential for mishap. If you were injured whilst on the trip there is a very efficient rescue service nearby.
Adventure Consultants will provide breakfasts for the duration of the week. You will be responsible for your own lunch and snacks each day, plus your evening meals for the two nights in Chamonix. Evening meals for the four nights in Cogne are included. In Chamonix, you can experience the exciting culinary options available as there are many restaurants and bars within close walking distance to the hotel that provide a variety of foods to suit your tastes, or you can elect to eat at the hotel.
In addition to your lunches, it is a good idea to bring a small selection of your favourite snack food and hydration drinks with you to ensure you are fuelled by your preferred brands. Actual amounts depend on your consumption but two bars/snacks per day in addition to your lunch would seem reasonable. If you have any special dietary requirements, please advise us at the time of registration. If your dietary requirements are especially strict you are advised to bring a sufficient supply of your required food types with you to ensure you are provided for.
Accommodation is provided on a twin share B&B basis from Saturday evening through to the following Sunday morning after breakfast. The 2-3 star hotels we utilise are clean and comfortable and include breakfast. If you want single accommodation or a higher standard of accommodation, we can arrange this for you should you wish. Please enquire about options and costs at time of enquiry.
Clothing & Equipment
Climbing in the European Alps requires you have high quality clothing and equipment due to the extremes of weather conditions. Our focus is on having the essential clothing and equipment to keep you warm and comfortable during the climbing days.
Your guide will go through an equipment checklist with you at the beginning of your trip. You can rent technical equipment for the course but you must provide your own clothing appropriate to mountaineering as per the equipment list. Actual equipment taken may vary subject to seasonal weather and route conditions. Group equipment including ropes and technical hardware will be provided by your guide but if you have your won tools and ice screws feel free to bring them along.
Communications & Messages
Our guides are in cell phone communication with our operations base throughout the trip. This assists us with schedule and weather forecast updates, lift and accommodation co-ordination and safety back up. Your own mobile phone should work in the region though you may want to check with your own service provider first. Local mobile phones can be rented at the international airports.
We operate our Ice Climbing Weeks during January and February. In March and April we can still climb in some areas so contact us for private guiding rates at these times.
Europe has a continental climate which in general encourages more stable weather. However, the weather in the high mountains can be changeable and at times very severe with temperatures dropping as low as minus 20°C.