Scotland Winter Meet


21/02/2016 - 27/02/2016    
All Day


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Alex MacIntyre Memorial Hut
Alex MacIntyre Memorial Hut , North Ballachulish

Event Type

SCC’s First foray into the white stuff!!

Meet now full, please add your name to the reserve list in case someone pulls out

 Winter skills course cancelled – Course info here…
Unfortunately Brad, who had kindly volunteered his time to teach will unexpectedly be on duty, therefore we are looking for an alternative.

winter climbing rack Pete_Thorpe_Ice_climbing_Sc 16Jan2012_Creag-Meagaidh001 0K8A5072-Edit-Edit-330x220 DSC0941-221 secret6_1

We are going up to bonnie Scotland (no need for passports yet!) late feb to pick some ice and generally play around in the snow. The scenery is breathtaking, so much so that poets and artists have been romanticising about it for 100’s of years!.  To make the long trip up worth while we plan to stay 6 nights so we get plenty of climbing and hiking opportunity.


We will be staying at the Alex MacIntyre Memorial Hut (see below)

The Alex MacIntyre Memorial Hut

Your view from the hut in winter…

This is a comfortable BMC hut with 16 beds spread across 5 rooms. There are showers toilets, a drying room, lounge and fully functional kitchen. Bring your sleeping bag and a pillow.While I hope we could fill the hut we have provisionally booked 8 spaces to begin with (so we don’t end up with empty beds).  Ill add more if there is further interest beyond the 8. As there are 5 rooms kids are welcome to come.


North Ballachulish on A82, one mile north of the Ballachulish Bridge, 50 m from the entrance to the Creag Mhor Hotel, OS Map no 41, Grid Ref 044 612. The car park is at the rear of the building and is accessed from the main road via a narrow lane

Map location

£60 for the 6 nights. (£30 deposit needed on booking). Please pay by BACS (see instruction on registration below) or sign up with paypal (paypal fee added).


Car share: for a car it works out roughly £30 each for the return journey (Assuming 4 in a car, inc the M6 toll). Cost will vary from car to car so this is up to the drivers.
Scotland is a reasonable 520 miles one way, or ~10 hrs drive. Please try to share the driving i.e. add at least 1 other driver to your insurance (usually free or very cheap).


We will arrange food closer to the time but most meals will be at the hut – likely we will buy there and then and split the cost


This is a winter meet where we will be winter climbing (mixed and ice) and winter hiking. Although this meet is open to all members it is essential that you have familiarised yourself at least with the basics of hiking in the mountains.
As there will be experienced people there will be opportunity to climb with them, though it is worth asking first!.

Remember this is Scotland in winter. Please check the list carefully. Bring kit for VERY cold weather and if in doubt ask someone with experience before choosing gear!.

Sleeping bag,
Harness, shoes, belay device
Waterproof trowsers, 
Waterproof jacket,
Fleece and baselayer x2
Helmet Absolutely  essential for any winter climbing!

Boots and crampons (At least B2 if in doubt ask for advice)
If you intend to climb then  B3 Boots are recommended, these are very stiff-soled boots designed to take ‘C3’ Crampons where you will be placing your weight on to crampon-points. For hiking and some easy climbing (up to grade II to III winter) then  B2 boots and C2 crampons are fine. UKC often has second hand gear for those on a
budget, failing that beg, borrow, steal…
Gloves (two pairs, one for climbing one for the approach/gearing up): see advice on UKC
Walking axe: These are relatively inexpensive (especially 2nd hand) but essential for hiking in winter. Make sure its T-rated eg the DMM Cirque as you can then use it for belays.
If you don’t own one, are a beginner, and are just trying this out you really don’t need a brand new axe- UKC forums are usually full of 2nd hand gear for sale, esp winter kit!
Good 40L+ or 50L Rucksack: Make sure the bag has both shoulder and waist straps and a rucksack liner. (A plastic rubble sac or dry bag will do)
Headtorch AND spare batteries: A non-starter, chances of dark descents are much higher in winter
Plastic water bottle at least 1L,
First aid kit + blister kit
Warm hat, baloclava, and or buff/neck gaiter if you have one
Lunch box
Survival bag
Map OS 41 Ben Nevis 1:50,000 or  Explorer 392 AND 384 1:25,000
Snow goggles

If you own the following please bring these too:
Trad rack
Half ropes (for trad) or winter climbing ‘iceline’ ropes
Ice axes for climbing (if you own more than one pair then im sure someone would be grateful if you would not mind lending them a set).
Ice screws

10 reasons to come winter climbing
1) Its super bad-ass!.
The sound of a well placed axe embedding itself into the ice, the satisfaction of clipping in to an ice screw, the sheer adventure of it all and the fact you will feel like a hero when you summit are just a few of the delights that await.
2) Winter climbing rewards you with jaw dropping scenery.
3) Good company.
There are several experienced folk in SCC + there is plenty of time between now and 2016 to get some practice in.
4) Even the walking is epic…
If you don’t fancy full blown ice climbing just yet, come along for the amazing hiking. You will learn lots of skills and gain valuable experience which will help no matter what you get up to on the mountains.
5) Whisky!
6) Probably the most rewarding beer/pub dinner you will have when you have burned 4000 calories on the mountain.
7) No internet on the mountain…
No Facebook, no emails – forget about the computer and enjoy life!
8) Digging your own snowhole
9) Brilliant excuse to go shopping…
One can hire the necessary kit, or borrow, beg, steal… Check out UKC forums for 2nd hand tools, crampons etc for bargains.
10) You will yearn for more

Broaden your horizons and sharpen your tools 🙂


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