AS 225 - Introduction to Ice Climbing 


The course begins with an indoor introduction to the tools of the trade: ice tools, crampons, climbing boots, and ice screws.  We cover proper clothing and comfort in the cold and sometimes wet environment of ice climbs.  The outdoor sessions begin with a review of knots, climbing signals, belaying, and site safety. Climbing techniques on varied terrain are demonstrated and then practiced by students.  By the end of the course, students will have climbed several hundred vertical feet of class III ice.  More difficult climbs are possible if skill levels and time permit.  The course will involve four ¾ day sessions in the long block.  Any make up session due to weather issues may need to take place on a weekend. Students are expected to become familiar with terms and techniques explained in readings and other media.

Introduction to Ice Climbing

Winter Intensive 2013

Pavel Cenkl, Faculty (
Geoffrey Fehrs, Teaching Assistant (

This course introduces students to the practice and culture of ice climbing. Over the 2 weeks of the winter intensive, we will explore several different climbing areas in Vermont and New Hampshire, and we will adopt a progressive approach to ice climbing technique on low-angle and vertical ice, mixed terrain, and rock.

  • Students will demonstrate a mastery of a broad range of knots, equipment, and safety techniques
  • Students will practice a diverse range of techniques on ice and mixed terrain
  • Students will participate fully in climbing activities, site management, support for others, self-preparedmess, and demonstrate appropriate comportment, deportment, and zeal 
  • Students will understand contemporary climbing in a historical context 


                All climbing equipment (boots, crampons, helmet, harness, belay device, etc.)

Medium sized backpack
2 pairs of gloves / mittens
Bottom layers: insulating and water resistant
Top layers: insulating and water resistant for climbing
Super-warm belay jacket
Thin hat and balaclava for climbing
Hat for approach

1.5 - 2 liters of water
Lunch and snack

For overnight (Feb 4-6)
Sleeping bag (indoors)
Sleeping pad


Monday 1/28                 Welcome. Half-day intro, belaying, gear

Tuesday 1/29 or Wednesday 1/30 Bolton Quarries
Thursday 1/31                 Smugglers Notch

Monday 2/4                 NH - Frankenstein (overnight)
Tuesday 2/5                   NH - Texaco (overnight)
Wednesday 2/6                 NH - Flume

Friday 2/8                 Lake Willoughby