Whether you have already begun to develop your mountaineering skills or you are an outdoor sports enthusiast seeking your next challenge, a mountaineering course and summit climb in the Pacific Northwest may be perfect for you. Packed with the highest density of glaciated mountains in the contiguous United States, the North Cascades offer excellent training grounds for climbers of all backgrounds and experience levels.
- 3 Day Mount Baker Intro to Mountaineering Climb – Are you eager to experience the beauty and thrill of climbing glaciated mountains? In Northwest Alpine Guides’ Summit Climb and Introduction to Mountaineering School on Mount Baker, you will learn the fundamental skills you need to climb glaciated peaks successfully with a guide. This course is designed for first-time climbers and those seeking to refresh their climbing skills.
- 5 Day Mount Baker Glacier Mountaineering Course – Learn how to climb big mountains on the second most glaciated peak in the Lower 48 States! In this course, you will establish a foundation of essential glacier mountaineering skills and put them to use while ascending to the summit of Mount Baker. The curriculum is designed for climbers seeking to develop the skills they need to travel safely and independently in glaciated environments or climb larger objectives such as Denali, Aconcagua and the high peaks of the Himalaya. You will practice the fundamentals of glacier mountaineering and snow climbing, including crampon and ice axe technique, self-arrest, rope team travel, crevasse rescue and more.
- 7 Day North Cascades Alpine Climbing Course – Our North Cascades Alpine Climbing Course is our most comprehensive introduction to the diverse skills of modern alpinism. Over the course of a week, you will rock climb above the scenic Puget Sound, and climb two famous peaks in North Cascades National Park: Sahale Mountain and Sharkfin Tower. Along the way, you will learn the fundamentals of alpine rock climbing and glacier mountaineering, including: rope team travel, crevasse rescue, glacier navigation, expedition camping, trip planning, multipitch climbing, belaying, rappelling, crampon and ice axe technique; rock and ice anchors and protection, and more.
- 2 Day Crevasse Rescue Course – Mount Baker is a superb mountaineering training ground because its glaciers can be accessed with just a few hours of hiking from the Heliotrope Ridge Trailhead. This course introduces the skills essential to travel safely and independently in glaciated environments. The curriculum includes crampon and ice axe technique, essential knots and hitches and crevasse rescue. It is designed for any climber seeking to gain experience on glaciers, and will open the door to ascents of Mount Baker, Mount Rainier and other large mountains.
- 2 Day Intro to Ice Climbing Course – The icefall on the lower Deming Glacier on the north side of Mount Baker is a superb training ground for alpine ice climbing because it can be accessed with just a few hours of hiking from the Heliotrope Ridge Trailhead. On this course, you will practice fundamental technical and movement skills for glacier ice climbing. The curriculum will help you prepare you for ascents of classic climbs such as Mount Baker’s North Ridge and Liberty Ridge on Mount Rainier.
- 6 Day Mount Baker Expedition Training Course – With the stunning terrain of Mount Baker as your classroom, you will learn how to prepare for expeditions in the great mountain ranges of the world, such as the Alaska Range, the Andes and the Himalaya. This curriculum includes an ascent to the summit of Mount Baker and emphasizes the technical and logistical skills needed to climb large peaks and move safely and independently in glaciated environments. During the spring season, we will travel with snowshoes and sleds and learn how to build a secure expedition snow camp. Your guides will teach you the fundamentals of glacier mountaineering and snow climbing, including crampon and ice axe technique, self-arrest, rope team travel, crevasse rescue, glacier navigation, snow and ice anchors and more. Northwest Alpine Guides’ 6-Day Expedition Training Course allows more time for you to develop advanced mountaineering skills.
- 2-3 Day Mount Washington Winter Intro Course – Mount Washington is the premier mountaineering destination in the Northeastern United States. As the highest point in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, its summit bears the brunt of some of the most severe weather in the world. In the winter, its steep slopes loaded with ice and snow make it an excellent training ground for anyone who wants to discover mountaineering, and for climbers training for glaciated peaks such as Mount Baker and Mount Rainier. We offer a variety of winter programs in the Mount Washington area, including our 2-day and 3-day mountaineering courses, a 2-day introduction to ice climbing, and a 3-day traverse over seven of the most prominent peaks of the White Mountains’ Presidential Range.
- 3 Day Intro to Alpine Rock Climbing – Discover the challenge and thrill of alpine rock climbing! In this course you will learn basic rock climbing movement techniques and essential technical skills for multi-pitch, alpine climbing, including belaying, rappelling and anchor construction. Our instruction begins on the granite cliffs of Mount Erie, high above Washington’s scenic Puget Sound. Then we hike to Vesper Peak, where we spend two days climbing multipitch alpine rock routes amid the spectacular scenery of the North Cascades. As an alternate venue, we may climb near Snoqualmie Pass just 45 minutes from Seattle.
- 3 Day Smith Rock Intro to Sport Climbing – Learn the essentials of outdoor sport climbing! In this course you will practice essential techniques for safe, successful outdoor climbing, including knots, protection and anchors; belaying, lowering and rappelling; movement skills, trip planning, gear selection, climbing communication and more. Your classroom will be sunny Smith Rock State Park near Bend, OR, one of the United States’ premier climbing destinations.
- 3 Day Intro to Backcountry Ski Touring – Leave the crowds behind and learn to backcountry ski! During this course we introduce the essential skills and equipment that allow us to safely enjoy the vast and exciting world of backcountry skiing. During an overnight ski tour on the pristine south side of Mount Baker, we discuss gear and movement skills for uphill and downhill travel, placing an emphasis on avalanche safety and alpine touring equipment including climbing skins, boots and bindings – all while chasing powder turns in the Schriebers Meadow area and on the Lower Easton Glacier.
- 5 Day Mount Baker Glacier Ski Mountaineering – Are you interested in advancing your backcountry skiing skills in glaciated terrain? Mount Baker is the perfect setting to gain the knowledge and experience that is essential for taking on larger mountain objectives in the backcountry, as well as glaciated peaks. This five-day course serves to develop the skills needed for climbing and skiing on complex glaciated terrain. We will cover the fundamentals of backcountry skiing, including touring equipment, avalanche equipment and rescue, ascent and descent techniques, safety and navigation, and terrain selection.
- 2 Day Mount Baker Ski Descent – At 10,781 feet, Mount Baker, or Komo Kulshan (the “Great White Watcher”) is one of the most picturesque volcanoes of the Cascade Range. It is the ideal location for aspiring ski mountaineers, and those who want to explore skiing on glaciated peaks. It is the second most glaciated mountain in the Lower 48 States, exceeded only by Mount Rainier, and its ice-covered pyramid is an iconic sight rising in the distance above Seattle and Vancouver, British Columbia.