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North Carolina Winter Mountaineering

Ron Funderburke. North Carolina Ice Climbing 2009
By far, winter is one of the most exciting and diverse seasons to climb in North Carolina.  You never know what you are going to get, but it’s sure to be a great time.  This January and February, Ron Funderburke is offering a winter mountaineering getaway to showcase some of the amazing options we have in the mountains.  This would be a great course for those climbers who wish to join us in New Hampshire in February, or for any climber who wants an introduction to climbing the greater mountain ranges.

Depending on conditions, the mountaineering getaway will follow one of three itineraries, Ice Climbing, Winter Rock Climbing, or Gully Climbing.

Ice Climbing Option:  Climbers will arrive on Friday evening, quickly assemble gear for the weekend, and caravan up to our high camp along the Blue Ridge Parkway.  There, commodious tents, a roaring fire, and hearty cold weather stew will help all climbers weather the chilly night time temps.  On day one, we will ice climb at any of several venues along the Blue Ridge Parkway and Hwy 215.  On day two, we will all complete a multipitch ice climb before heading back down into town for fond farewells.

Winter Rock Climbing Option:  Climbers will arrive on Friday evening, quickly assemble gear for the weekend, and caravan up to our high camp near Table Rock North Carolina.  There, spacious tents, a soul-warming fire, and a helping of gumbo will help all climbers weather the chilly night time temps.  On day one, we will learn to rock climb in a combination of mountaineering boots, crampons, and rock shoes, gloved hands, occasional ice axe use, and more layers than we are used to from the summer.  On day two, we will complete a multipitch winter rock climb to the summit of Table Rock. 

Gully Climbing Option:  Climbers will arrive on Friday evening, quickly assemble gear for the weekend, and caravan up to our high camp near Mount Mitchell North Carolina.  There, cozy tents, a restorative fire, and warming winter stew will help all climbers weather the chilly night time temps.  On day one, we will learn to climb steep snow, low-angled ice, and rock in mountaineering boots with crampons, using technical ice axes, and mountaineering ice axes.  On day two, we will all climb a multipitch gully to summit of the rough ridge.

Participants need to equip themselves with the following prerequisite items:

  • Cold weather apparel, including thermal layers, hats and gloves, a pair of warm boots for snowy conditions (preferably mountaineering boots), and waterproof outer layers.
  • A cold weather sleeping bag, something rated at zero degrees is usually more than toasty enough, and a sleeping pad
  • Personal necessities (toiletries, electronics, medications, etc)

Fox Mountain Guides and Climbing School will provide the following:

  • All climbing equipment, including mountaineering boots, crampons, axes, ropes, and winter hardware.
  • All camping equipment except the sleeping bag and sleeping pad, including tents, cooking equipment and serving items.
  • All food for the weekend: two dinners, two breakfasts, two lunches, daytime snacks for two outings, hot drinks (coffee, tea, cider)

Minimum Age: 16

Climber to Instructor Ratio:  3:1

Cost: The winter mountaineering course is a little more expensive than our other courses because accommodations and food are included, there is an extra half day, the instructor to student ratio is much lower, and we use a wider array of equipment.  We essentially add $100 to our regular course fee structure.

1:1 Course: $650 per person

2:1 Course:  $470 per person

3:1 Course:  $400 per person

Maximum enrollment: 6 students

Click here to book this course

 

Whitesides Starshine