Winter Survival Courses

Our Winter Survival Courses in Scotland run from December to March and take place on the high Sub-Arctic Plateau of the Cairngorms, one of the harshest and beautiful areas in Britain. The Cairngorms has a rich history when it comes to Survival training and mountaineering having been the training ground for the famous ‘Hero’s of Telemark’, as well as others. For those looking to increase their experience at coping in a cold climate our courses are the first step.

You can book your Winter Course now with our online booking system, please check course dates for availability. Once you have booked your course you will receive an email confirming the course and payment details. Remember to download the available resources for your course and bring them with you when you start.

We have a range of courses to suit everyone, for more information on our Winter Survival Courses in Scotland please do contact us. We look forward to welcoming you in the 2018/19 winter season.

To make sure you choose the right course we have introduced a difficulty rating based on the physical and mental challenges on our courses. This is explained below.

“Courses with this rating are suitable for all. There is a small amount of physical hardship with a small amount of walking.”

“Courses with this rating are suitable for all. There is a reasonable amount of walking and some forms of physical output.”

“Courses with this rating are suitable for 16+. There is a significant amount of physical output, perhaps over a number of days. Time may be spent overnight in poor weather with minimum equipment. A certain amount of mental robustness is needed to complete.”

“Courses with this rating are suitable for 18+. There is significant physical output sometimes over multi-day, and often in Hostile habitats i.e high mountains etc. Equipment/food may be stripped back (if woodland based) or large rucksacks carried (if mountain based). Temperatures may be sub-zero or excessively high. A good level of mental robustness is needed. Special attention should be given to the kit lists available.”

“Courses with this rating are suitable for 18+. There is sustained physical output over multi-days, potentially carrying up to 40lbs, often in high/mountain terrain. Long “hill days” may be necessary, for this reason a good level of fitness is needed. Weather and temperatures are likely to be sub-zero or excessively high. Special attention should be given to kit lists available.”



Two Day Winter Skills £200.00

The Overview for the Two Day Winter Skills includes the following:

Ability, Knowledge and Confidence are essential when travelling through a winter mountain environment. This two day introduction to winter skills will give you a basic grounding in winter mountaineering and mountain-craft.

Based in and around the Cairngorms, a mecca for winter mountaineering and climbing gives us access to some of the most picturesque scenery in Britain. The Cairngorm National park was recently voted by National Geographic as the top 50 places in the world to visit. The Cairngorm National Park is home to the 2nd (Ben Macdui) to the 6th highest (Cairngorm) of the top 10 highest mountains in Britain .

2013 has been a particularly bad year for accidents and fatalities in the Scottish mountains. BCS have a proven track record when it comes to expeditions both at home and abroad, this can only be maintained by having the overriding safety of ourselves and our clients in mind. For this reason we may decide due to avalanche hazard or weather conditions to visit a different range than usual.

The course starts on the first day in the Northern Corries which contains Coire an t-sneachda (Corrie of the snows) and Coire an Lochain (Corrie of the Lochs) focusing on personal skills and safe winter travel. The second day consists of a hill day and depending on conditions a chance to take in some spectacular peaks.

This is a course suitable for individuals and groups to brush up on skills that will hold you in good stead for future adventures on your own or with us.

Difficulty Rating

The Itinerary for the Two Day Winter Skills includes the following:

  • Weather chart interpretation
  • Map,compass and navigational techniques specific to winter mountaineering
  • Specialist equipment coaching (ice axe and crampons)
  • Security on steep ground
  • Avalanche pit construction and avalanche awareness
  • Emergency shelter construction
Date Time Spaces Price Book
7 March 2020 09:30 - 17:00 3 £200 Book Now

Please download these resources for your information

Three Day Snowhole Expedition £310.00

The Overview for the Three Day Snowhole Expedition includes the following:

Participants beginning the excavation of a Ca-loo (a mix between an ice cave and an igloo) above 1100 meters


The Cairngorm Plateau is the wildest and harshest environment in the British isles. So closely does it mimic the Arctic and Scandinavian widerness that it was used to train the famous “Heroes of Telemark” during “Operation Grouse“.  Many companies offer trips to Norway and Canada but Scotland has just as much to offer when it comes to Arctic survival and coping in a cold environment at a fraction of the price.

The course is split into 1 day of winter skills with an overnight in our Bothy. Then a two day expedition into the heart of the Cairngorms Plateau. Typically we will be digging into the snow pack at a height of over 1000m, this truly is a memorable experience, waking up in the middle of the winter mountains with not another person for miles around.

Please note that B2/3 boots, crampons, ice axe, helmets, snow shovels probes etc are provided by us. Hire is included in the price.

Before booking this trip please pay close attention to the Difficulty rating, and kit list which can be found on the downloads section of this course. This course can be exceptionally challenging, although the sense of accomplishment is second to none!

For more information please visit our blog on winter shelters.

Difficulty Rating

The Itinerary for the Three Day Snowhole Expedition includes the following:

Day 1

Day 2

  • Avalanche awareness
  • Safe site choice
  • Snow hole choice and construction
  • Admin and safety

Day 3

  • Hill Day
  • Navigation
  • Self arrest and security on steep ground
Date Time Spaces Price Book
8 February 2020 09:30 - 17:00 12 £310 Book Now
18 February 2020 09:30 - 17:00 5 £310 Book Now

Please download these resources for your information