Mountaineering 102

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Mountaineering 102

All ages 12 and up

Travelling in the rugged backcountry of the Colorado Rockies can be a daunting undertaking. Mountain enthusiasts need to be well prepared to handle anything the mountains might throw at them. Learn how to approach and achieve mountain objectives with the guides at Apex Mountain School. We can work with you to develop new skills and enhance existing ones. Just as importantly, we will help you hone your mountain sense and judgement as our guides share with you their strategies for making the most of mountain environments.

Apex Mountain School’s Mountaineering series of courses offers a logical progression in your development as a mountaineer. Topics for each course may include, but are not necessarily limited to the following.


Possible Topics

  • Self Arrest- Review and practice this invaluable skill
  • High Angle Self Rescue- Learn how to extricate yourself from threatening situations in complex terrain.
  • Team Rope Travel- Practice the basics of this technique and discuss its proper application.
  • White Out Navigation- Use navigational aides to help deal with challenging storm situations.
  • Fixed Line Ascension- This technique offers additional security of steep and or dicey slopes
  • Winter Snow Shelter Construction-– Igloo, Quinzee, Tree Well Shelter, Cave and Snow Trench are discussed. We construct a shelter for our overnight stay.
  • Winter Survival Skills
  • May also include: backcountry AT/telemark technique.


Improve and expand upon the skills required to survive and climb in the mountains. Topics include navigation, avalanche education, snow travel and ice and rock climbing.

All ages 12 and up


Available daily


6 hours


Leadville, CO (Chalk Creek)
Vail, CO (Meadow Mountain)
San Juan Range


Intermediate – Difficult


See our inclusion policy for special group requests.


  • Beacon (rental available)
  • *No cotton – cotton does not wick moisture or insulate when wet.
  • Synthetic or wool long underwear bottom (thin)
  • Synthetic or wool long sleeve top (medium)
  • Mid layer top and bottom
  • Synthetic or wool socks
  • Winter jacket
  • Insulated “Puffy” Jacket
  • Snow pants
  • Warm gloves or mittens
  • Hat and neck gaiter or balaclava
  • Goggles or sunglasses
  • Small day pack
  • Water bottle
  • Food


  • Hand warmers
  • Thermos of hot liquid
  • Gaiters
  • Extra gloves
  • Lip balm
  • Sunscreen
  • Water bottle insulator
  • Camera


  • Boots
  • Crampons
  • Ice Axes
  • Helmet
  • Harness (42”/44” max)


During times of Covid-19 concern please bring:
Face mask, Hand Sanitizer, Rubber Gloves (if desired)