Mountain Skills

Holistic Course Content

Mountain skills is a term that covers the range of skills that are required to explore the mountains and remote places. I believe that navigation skills shouldn’t be taught in isolation because other aspects of hill walking or mountaineering such as route choice and planning are equally important skills to learn.

Below are the type of courses I deliver that will get you on your way to becoming a confident and skilled hill and mountain walker. If you want something more bespoke feel free to get in touch.

Map to Basics

This course is an introduction to all the skills required to plan a day in the hills. Navigation in the mountains is a necessary skill that constantly needs practice and has many elements that can seem overwhelming to anyone starting learning. 

With my patient and relaxed tuition I can help you become confident in any aspect of navigation from basic map-reading skills and micro-navigation in poor visibility to the use of Navigation aids such as GPS receivers.  

This course can be run as a 1:1 which means you get my undivided attention but I find these courses are best run with at least 2 people. 

The maximum per course is 6 people per day to ensure as personal an experience as possible. 

Course Content

This course is not just a navigation course. I will cover the fundamentals of the more in-depth Mountain Skills course below in parallel with map skills, but the main emphasis will be on how to confidently navigate using a map, compass and the terrain. 

The course will be tailored to your requirements and prior knowledge but a typical course will cover the following:

  • Introduction to maps
  • Using a map to plan and follow a route
  • Grid references
  • Contour interpretation
  • Basic compass use
  • Emergency procedures
  • Environmental awareness

There is the possibility to add on either a night navigation session or a full wild camp which includes a 3 hr navigation session in the dark. 

learning Navigation in snowdonia


Mountain Skills

This is a more in-depth 2 day (minimum) course than Map to Basics but will cover all the topics in that course as a refresher if required. It is aimed at those looking to become more proficient and safe in the mountain environment.  We will spend our time predominantly above 600m looking at all the skills needed to negotiate mountainous terrain efficiently and safely. 

Course Content

The course will be delivered entirely within Snowdonia National Park, in mountainous terrain by myself or another highly qualified Mountaineering and Climbing Instructor if I am unavailable on the dates you request. 

This course will focus on the following skills:

  • Navigation
  • Movement skills
  • Weather Forecasting
  • Route planning
  • Hazards and Emergency procedures
  • Equipment
  • Environmental awareness

Day one will begin by discussing planning, weather forecasts and equipment to decide where to go. We will then depart for the day to take a look at navigation skills. This will be quite in-depth and will take up most of the day but we will regularly look at other topics as they appear. The nature of the course is that we approach topics as they arise.

Some of the course will be spent on grade 1 scrambling territory to discuss movement skills and group management so you should ideally be an experienced walker with experience on similar terrain though this isn’t essential. 

There is the possibility to add on either a night navigation session or a full wild camp which includes a 3 hr navigation session in the dark (see Prices).


Mountain skills course snowdonia


Looking for something more extreme?