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Club Mountaineering Activities

Some people try to characterise clubs as into 'walking' or 'climbing' pigeon holes, but as you might expect from a club with a large active membership, the range of activities carried out within the Jacobites is wide. The core ones can be considered as hillwalking, rock climbing, ice climbing and ski-mountaineering, with all the inevitable combinations and cross-overs. Club members are also active in many other related pursuits, including hill-running, canoeing, mountain biking, cycle touring, caving, sailing etc.

The club aims are to encourage and facilitate mountaineering. The main way in which we do this is by coordinating venues and booking accommodation for meets. As well as organising official events, we provide a meeting place for those who wish to organise their own activities with like-minded individuals.

The club does not normally set routes or define specific activities, and we do not appoint group leaders for walking or climbing. Individuals are responsible for ensuring that they are equipped for and capable of any activity which they wish to participate in.


Hillwalking

The majority of people, attending most weekend meets, are involved in hillwalking. The widespread locations visited by the club allow members to experience the the full range of hillwalking throughout Scotland, and the Wednesday evening walks in the summer explore some of the more local areas.

There is activity at all levels throughout the year, with most people active in the winter.


Rock Climbing

The club has a large number of rock-climbers, at all levels of experience and ability from beginners to those who regularly set new routes at high grades. The club offers great opportunities to those wishing to gain experience and improve their grades. We also have individuals who have shown a flair for specialist pursuits such as sea-stack climbing. In recent years, club members have organised several expeditions to remote Hebridean islands, such as Mingualay and Pabbay.

Winter Climbing

As with the rock climbing we have members who ice climb at all levels. There are some who regularly climb at Grade V or Grade VI when conditions allow, but if those sound like silly grades, there are plenty who have recently moved onto winter climbing from hillwalking and rock climbing. The club hut provides a good base for climbing on Fuar Tholl and around Torridon, when the routes are in condition. Many weekend meets in winter are well placed for the main climbing area, and the annual CIC Hut meet is intended for those wishing to do winter routes on Ben Nevis.



Ski Mountaineering

Given the fickle nature of Scottish winter weather, this is the least predictable of the core activities. To compensate for this, a hardcore of members will pick up their skis and skins, then rush to the hills, on hearing rumours of a significant dump of snow. Feel free to pitch into the Alpine vs. Telemark debate.


International

The club does not officially organise any foreign meets, but our members do a lot of foreign travel. We have people who can share their experiences of mountaineering in places around the world, including Alaska, the Alps, the Andes, Canada, the Himalayas, Jordan, the Moroccan Atlas, Kenya and Tanzania, New Zealand, Norway and the Tien Shan.


Improving Skills

Joining an active club is good way to gain valuable experience, and there is no substitute to experience for being able to operate safely and effectively in the mountains. Club members are always happy to offer advice and share their knowledge with less experienced members, but please remember that very few of them have any formal qualifications for instructing. This limitation, and other aspects of how the club operates, mean that we can not normally offer any formal training courses ourselves, but there are a number of ways in which we can help those who want instruction.

There are a small number of qualified instructors within the club. Occasionally they will be able to offer a course, which will be advertised through the normal club channels. We are entirely dependent on their time and goodwill for this.

Through our Mountaineering Council of Scotland affiliation, members get access to a number of training courses. These mainly cover navigation, first aid and winter skills. Details are available directly from the MCofS Website, through the club secretary or on the club noticeboard.

The following links may also be useful:
Glenmore Lodge - The National Mountain Training Centre for Scotland
Edinburgh International Climbing Arena - at Ratho.
Boots Across Scotland
BMC Safety Advice