Winter and ice climbing course will prepare you for alpine climbing which combines and makes use of trad and multi-pitch climbing skills in winter condition. You will encounter ice, snow, rocks and difficult conditions during ascent and you will need to place special protection, use crampons and ice axes to ascend the route.

Winter and ice climbing course in the Tatra Mountains. 

Professional instruction for an affordable price in stunning mountains.

Course price: €750 for one person/€450 for 2 people 

What’s included?: 7+ hours of climbing every day, winter climbing instructions and workshops, all climbing equipment: harness, crampons, ice axes, helmet, climbing gear, full support of the local qualified instructors, evening movies and lectures.

Dates in 2019:

This winter and ice climbing course I run on request. You can choose almost any time between December and April. Simply send me your dates and I will do my best to accommodate you. I’m very flexible but an early booking will secure the optimal dates.

I would like you to come with your climbing partner and learn skills together if possible.

Winter and ice climbing course program:

Day 1

Early meeting in Krakow, 2 hours drive to the Tatra Mountains, 2 hours hike to the hut, general safety and avalanche awareness in winter, lecture about how to choose right clothes and gear for winter climbing course.

Day 2

Recap of using avalanche detectors and self-arrest, top rope ice and mix climbing, crampons and ice axes skills, climbing knots and rope work technique.

Day 3

Mix climbing on complex winter terrain at grade II-IV routes, placing and removing winter protection, building stances for belaying using different snow/rock anchors, abseiling off, lecture about planning winter climbing.

Day 4

Winter climbing on grade III-V routes, organizing belying stances, placing ice screws, building ice anchors, tactics and techniques, abseiling off. We plan to finish the course at 17:00. Hike down and return journey.


  • This is suggested outlook for the winter and ice climbing course program but we can adjust it to your needs and time. An extra day will cost €300.
  • Please note that the program is subject to change due to weather conditions or other factors.
  • If you think you are not ready for this type of intense winter climbing course check our winter mountaineering course!

Where: Tatra Mountains, Poland

The Tatra Mountains are the highest range in the Carpathian Mountains and Poland’s alpine-type mountains. They form a natural border between Poland and Slovakia. The highest summits are Gerlach (2655 m, Slovakia) and Rysy (2499 m, Poland). Thanks to the relatively small area of the Tatras compared to the Alps, there’s a cosy atmosphere, but you can also feel like you’re in really high mountains. The landscape of the High Tatras is very interesting and is dominated by alpine type ridges, towering walls and rocky peaks, which is a testament to the strong action of glaciers.

“The Tatra Mountains are quickly becoming a super popular destination for climbing and must-see places amongst all mountaineers!!! “

The “Morskie Oko” hut is our base situated at Morskie Oko Lake, in the Rybi Potok Valley. It is located at an altitude of 1410 m above the sea level on the bank of glacial moraine. It was built in 1908 and has 78 beds mostly in bunk-style dormitories. It’s only 2 hours away on foot from the main car park and therefore, is a good and very popular place for trekkers as well as an excellent base to reach the best climbing routes in the Tatra Mountains.

Important information:

  • Mountain hut: I’m happy to assist you in booking a friendly mountain hut “Morskie Oko”. I don’t collect monies upfront for the hut. You will pay directly for the hut after your stay. The average price is €11 for a night (bedding, towel and local green tax included). You can buy breakfast (€5), dinner (€8) and snacks at the hut. Since this is a bunk bed style hut, you will share the room with others.
  • Flights and transport. You are responsible for booking your own flight to the place where we run our course. Flights to Poland are at the average price of €120 return (check budget airlines Wizzair and Ryanair). Please book your flight to Kraków airport. From Kraków, you can take a regular bus to Zakopane. To maximize your time and have a stress-free travel I strongly recommend to fly back the day after the course.  Zakopane is a busy resort and traffic jams occur very often despite very good transport. I’m happy to pick you up from the airport as long as you come on the first day of the course by early morning. The return journey to Kraków is possible as well.
  • Experience needed: This is a high-level winter climbing course. Winter mountaineering and summer mountain trad climbing experience are essential. A good fitness level is required.
  • The course is run by a very experienced Polish Instructor of Alpinism and is also overseen by me (read about us more) so it means that you are benefiting from the low ratio, therefore, excellent personalise instruction. Instructor to student ratio: 1:2
  • Required personal clothes for winter and ice climbing course: mountaineering boots suitable for C2 (semi-automatic) crampons, gaiters, waterproof jacket and trousers, softshell trousers, insulated jacket, base layers, warm fleece, warm socks, warm external gloves, thin inner gloves, hat or balaclava, head torch, flask, good backpack. This is an absolute minimum.

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