Ice Private Guiding

You are welcome to join us for custom ice climbing courses and private guided ice fall climbing throughout the winter season. We have been passionate about ice climbing ever since we sunk our first tool in the ice and would be more then happy to share our knowledge in some of the best ice climbing locations in Europe – we have access to and knowledge about many spectacular venues like Cogne (e.g. Valeille and Valnontey), Aosta (e.g. Valsavaranche and Valle di Gressoney), Rjukan, Abisko, Kandersteg, Val di Mello, Val Daone, Val Travenanzes, Sappada, Haute Maurienne, Vallèe de Fressinières, Fournel, High Tatra and all of those ”forgotten valleys” of Piemonte region in the northwest of Italy.

Just contact us to discuss your ambitions, so we can put together an appropriate itinerary tailored to your requirements. Personal guiding opens up a huge range of objectives, you can go anywhere and do anything you want, of course subject to weather, conditions and experience. To give you an idea of the proposals we undertake examples are given below.

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Prerequisite skills
As with most mountain activities, ice climbing requires a good level of general fitness in order to be able to cope with long days out in a cold environment, both approach and climbing wise. We provide suggestions of all levels of experience and ability, from beginner to expert. However, please be aware that for safety reasons, on longer and more serious routes we cannot promise making an ascent until we have seen how well you are currently climbing. Of course if you feel you lack some knowledge or uncertain of your own level, please feel free to contact us. We will do our best to give you the best experience possible.

Most private ice climbing courses and guiding are suitable for the cold mid-winter season and the best period is from late December to late February. However, early season ice can provide many opportunities for great climbing and can be a bit more solitude in most famous venues.

Some proposals
We run most private ice climbing courses and guiding in the Alps, venues such as Kandersteg, Cogne, La Grave, Val Varaita, Haute Maurienne and the Dolomites. For longer trips there are numerous other places available such as Canada or to Arctic Norway among others. Some interesting custom courses and personal guiding assignments are given below:

    • 600 Alpine Ice Tour – We use the guide book – Alpine Ice – The 600 best ice falls in the Alps – as an invitation to travel, meet and discover almost 600 icefalls over the vast territory of the Alpine chain. Interested to join us?
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    • Kandersteg Icefalls – Kandersteg is one of the Alps premier ice climbing venues situated in Switzerland, characterized by mythical beautiful ice formations and classic lines in a wonderful alpine environment. It is a place for experienced climbers who want to consolidate their skills on steeper ice, and above all, climb challenging high quality lines.
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    • Val Varaita Long Weekend – This is the place where Italian ice climbing was born in 1977 and where one of the first international ice climbing meetings was held. It is a little bit like an Italian version of the Norwegian Rjukan and has a variety of quality routes at all grades. The natural ice lines and the artificial ice park offers a perfect place to give a profound and pleasant introduction to the exciting world of ice climbing, hone your skills with blending instruction in all the important skills and lead you to climb magical frozen cascades you would never try without a professional mountain guide.
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    • Piemonte Ice Tour – Piemonte means “at the feet of the mountains” and while this region in the NW of Italy, with Turin as its capital, features wide sections of flat lands and gentle rolling hills (famous for their red wines), it’s the close presence of the Alps that gives Piemonte it physical identity. Here we will follow the footprints of Giancarlo Grassi, the “ice master”, who climbed thousands of ice routes and opened hundreds of new ones, accounted for in one of his guidebooks. A way to climb all those forgotten lines in complete solitude.
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Small groups
We only take 1-3 climbers/guide during these custom courses and personal guiding days. Sometimes there are two guides with independent groups working together. However, we move independently so that the groups can climb different lines.

Personal equipment
The following is a general equipment list, all communal safety equipment (e.g. ropes, ice screws, rock protections, etc) is provided by us. If you have any questions please feel free to contact us. Equipment marked with * can be provided by your guide when needed. Experienced climbers will find it best to bring their own tried and tested personal equipment.

• One pair of technical ice axes, such as the Petzl Quark, Nomic or Grivel Matrix.*
• Harness, with adjustable leg loops and gear loops.*
• Crampons, technical model, such as Petzl Dartwin, Lynx or Grivel G14.*
• Helmet*
• Avalanche transceiver*
• Shovel*
• Probe*
• 1 Belay device with a HMS screwgate karbiner.*
• 2 large locking HMS karabiner.*
• 2 Prusik cord.*
• 1 sewn tape sling 240 cm.*
• Poles, adjustable that can be mounted on a backpack.
• Backpack, 35-45 liters, with straps for climbing equipment.
• Ski goggles, “orange/yellow/clear” lenses to be used in windy weather.
• Sunglasses, category 2-4.
• Rigid mountaineering boots, a B3 rated boot is most suitable.
• Gaiters
• Gortex jacket or similar.
• Gortex pants or similar with ventilation possibilities.
• Mountain trousers combination in some softshell fabric or similar.
• Down jacket
• 2 pairs of base layer, synthetic or wool.
• 2 pairs of warm socks.
• Mid layer
• 2 pair of technical climbing gloves
• Insulated gloves, mitten type.
• Warm hat to fit under a helmet.
• Balaclava to protect your face in windy cold weather.
• Head torch with spare batteries.
• Sun block
• Water bottle (1-2 liters), since we do not recommend Camelback systems.
• Small medical kit.

• Professional Mountain Guide authorized by UIAGM/IFMGA.
• Use of the guides vehicle for transport (cost must be covered).
• A range of recommended accommodation options are provided.
• Personalized top quality ice climbing.

Not included
• Food and accommodation costs must be provided for you and the guide.
• Personal climbing equipment (see list above).
• Travel to/from designated meeting point.
• Mandatory insurance to cover mountain rescue costs.

Price: Private Guiding Rates, please contact us.

Please use the form if you have any questions or want us to contact you.

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