Ice Climbing & Mountaineering

NORTH CONWAY, NEW HAMPSHIRE

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Our guides have logged thousands of Mt Washington ascents over the years and have guided winter ice routes all throughout the Mt Washington valley, including areas on Cathedral in North Conway and Frankenstein Cliffs in Crawford Notch State Park.  From our home base in North Conway, we have quick access to some of the best, and most famous, ice climbing and mountaineering terrain in the world.  Mt Washington draws climbers from all over the world and serves as both a training ground and proving ground for winter climbing enthusiasts.  Variety of terrain, easy access to challenging climbing areas, and beautiful landscapes are but a few reasons why many well-known climbers now call the White Mountains their home.

Group classes and climbs require a minimum enrollment in order to run, and your reservation is subject to change if minimum enrollment is not reached.  These winter group classes and climbs are reserved for those age 18 and older.  If you have specific time and learning needs, any class can be booked privately any day of the week.  For information about private reservations, please call 845-668-2030 or email us at schools@ems.com.

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Private Guided Climbs

Looking to master a specific skill or accomplish a particular goal?  Or maybe you just want the guide to yourself, or on a day of your own choosing.  Regardless of the reason or the size of your party, just give us a call at 845-668-2030 to set up a private day tailored to your needs and schedule.  Private ice climbing, mountaineering, Mt Washington trips, and backcountry skiing classes are available 7 days a week.  READ MORE…

Available 7 days a week.  Please call 845-668-2030 or email us at schools@ems.com to schedule an outing.

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Mt Washington Ascent

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The tallest peak in the northeast is an even greater challenge in winter.  Over half of the 8.2 mile round trip is above tree line, where conditions can be famously harsh.  Mt Washington still holds the world record for the highest land wind speed at 231 mph and winter wind chill factor reaching a staggering -50 degrees F!  READ MORE…

Also available privately 7 days a week.  Please call 845-668-2030 or email us at schools@ems.com to schedule a private ascent.
one day / ratio 1:4

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Mt Lafayette & Franconia Ridge

Mt Lafayette, at 5,249 feet tall can be every bit as fierce as Mt Washington in the winter.  An ascent of Lafayette with a possible traverse of the Franconia Ridge is a great next step for folks who have climbed Washington in the winter and are looking for their next challenge.  READ MORE…

Also available privately 7 days a week.  Please call 845-668-2030 or email us at schools@ems.com to schedule a private ascent.
one day / ratio 1:4

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Mount Washington Observatory

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This unique experience combines the challenge of a winter ascent of the northeast’s highest peak with the rare opportunity to spend the night on the summit inside the Mount Washington Observatory’s legendary mountaintop weather station.  We’ll climb Mt Washington’s eastern flank, aiming to be above tree line around noon.  From there, we’ll cross the desolate landscape of the Alpine Garden, where the winds are often at their fiercest, and head up the summit cone.  READ MORE..

We are unable to run this program during the 2021-2022 winter season due to Covid restrictions.  If you would like to book a private overnight trip on Mt Washington, please call us at (845)668-2030 or email us at schools@ems.com for more information.

two days and one night / dinner & breakfast included / max 9 spots per trip

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Introduction To Winter Hiking

Looking to extend your three season outdoor fun but not quite sure where to begin?  Come join us for our introduction to winter hiking and see why you don’t need to put your adventures on hold when the snow starts to fly.  During this program, we will learn how to adapt our basic hiking skills to the winter environment, learn appropriate emergency preparedness for cold environments, learn all about appropriate clothing and equipment, and learn how to stay safe and warm during your expanded four season endeavors.  READ MORE…

Also available privately 7 days a week.  Please call 845-668-2030 or email us at schools@ems.com to schedule a private hike.
one day / ratio 1:6

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Introduction To Ice Climbing

Join us on this course for some great climbing on both snow and ice, and you’ll come away with a full understanding of the fundamentals of winter climbing.  It all starts here for people headed toward the winter pursuit of ice climbing.  In this full-day course, we will outfit you with all the technical gear required to move on steep snow and ice.  READ MORE…

Also available privately 7 days a week.  Please call 845-668-2030 or email us at schools@ems.com to schedule a private climb.
one day / ratio 1:4

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Intermediate Ice Climbing

If you’ve taken our Introduction to Ice Climbing course or have some previous ice climbing experience elsewhere, this full day course is for you.  After reviewing the basics and getting back into the swing of things, we will then focus on specific techniques for efficient movement on steeper ice, focusing in on building more confidence allowing you to climb longer, steeper lines.  From here the goal will be to cover a lot of new ground, ideally on a multi-pitch route.   READ MORE…

Also available privately 7 days a week.  Please call 845-668-2030 or email us at schools@ems.com to schedule a private climb.
one day / ratio 1:2

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Accelerated Mountaineering

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This is one of our most popular winter programs, and a solid foundation for anyone headed to Mt Rainier, Denali, or similar objectives.  This course will have a mix of “classroom” and outdoor time.  On day 1 we will discuss individual experience and goals and how we will tailor this course for your specific group.  Day 2 will again be a mixture of classroom and outdoor time.  Our classroom time will be focused on selecting objectives (mountains!!) to climb and how to go about climbing them.  During day 2 we will, as a team, choose a mountaineering objective for day 3.  READ MORE…

Also available privately 7 days a week.  Please call 845-668-2030 or email us at schools@ems.com to schedule a private course.
three days / ratio 1:4

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Glacier Skills & Crevasse Rescue

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If you aspire to climb bigger mountains out west or abroad, learning to rope up for and travel over glaciers is essential.  You’ll also need to know how to extricate yourself or your partner from a crevasse.  Though there are no glaciers in the northeast, our instructors can teach you all of the latest tricks and techniques for navigating though these hazards.  A portion of the day will be spent learning the basics of glacier rigging for different sized rope-teams, as well as equipment options and crevasse rescue systems.  We will then set up and practice the demonstrated techniques in the field.  We require technical climbing experience or participation in one or more of our mountaineering courses for this hands-on, technical program.  READ MORE…

Also available privately 7 days a week.  Please call 845-668-2030 or email us at schools@ems.com to schedule a private course.
one day / ratio 1:6

Eastern Mountain Sports Schools