Mountaineering

Ascend the heights to enjoy spectacular views of the polar surroundings

Mountaineering

Region: Antarctica

Destinations: Antarctic Peninsula

Explore the Antarctic highlands

If you’re looking to push yourself a little further on your polar voyage, mountaineering could be just what you’re after. This exhilarating activity lets you venture beyond the shorelines and into Antarctica’s higher ground, gaining vistas and viewpoints unavailable anywhere else.

Do I have to be in great physical shape for mountaineering?

You must be fit and have stamina enough to walk three or more hours over sometimes rugged terrain, both uphill and downhill.

What’s the difference between mountaineering and snowshoe hikes?

Mountaineering hikes may take you into glaciated areas that can expose you to crevasses, requiring more caution than on non-glaciated ground. You can also expect to make ascents and descents that might be challenging.

Is your mountaineering activity scaled to passenger ability?

We offer two types of mountaineering based on ability:

  • Basic mountaineering is for guests of all experience levels, and we provide all the equipment needed.
  • Technical mountaineering requires previous experience and special footwear you must provide yourself.

For more details, please consult our mountaineering manual.

How many mountaineering hikes will I go on?

On our Basecamp voyages, each guest will participate in every activity once as long as local conditions allow. Make sure you request mountaineering when booking this trip.

Do I have to bring any mountaineering equipment?

Some gear we provide, some you must bring yourself.

We supply the following:

  • snowshoes
  • muck boots
  • crampons
  • helmets
  • harnesses
  • ice axes
  • screw-gate carabiners
  • snap links
  • mountaineering ropes
  • tape slings
  • prussic loops
  • snow shovels
  • bivouac bags
  • biodegradable human waste bags (it is illegal to leave waste behind)

You must bring:

  • Feet
    • gaiters (if bringing your own boots)
    • thin synthetic under-socks to prevent blisters
    • synthetic / woolen thin / thick long socks
  • Outer layer clothing
    • down jacket
    • wind and waterproof breathable jacket with hood
    • wind and waterproof pants/salopettes (ski pants)
  • Thermal layer
    • synthetic / wool fleece / pile jacket / pull-on
    • synthetic/ wool fleece / pile pants / salopettes
    • fleece jacket or vest
  • Base layer (underwear)
    • synthetic / wool thin top (long/short sleeves / zipped)
    • synthetic / wool thin pants / long johns
    • synthetic / wool balaclava and hat
    • windproof cap with peak/ear protectors
    • sun hat, headband, face mask, neck gaiter / scarf
  • Hands
    • ski / mountain gloves
    • windproof over mitts
    • synthetic / wool thermal mitts/finger gloves
    • down mitts
    • thin (base layer) synthetic / wool mitts / gloves
    • mitts/gloves support (around neck)
  • Eyes
    • facial protection
    • sun glasses / glacier glasses with sides
    • spare glasses / lenses
  • Skin
    • sun block, sun screen, fatty lip salve (no water)
  • Hygiene
    • toilet / hygiene kit : pee bottle (for camping and mountaineering), e.g. wide opening Nalgene bottle (there are special adaptor for ladies in outdoor shops available)
  • Miscellaneous
    • personal medication
    • 25 liter rucksack
    • 1 liter water bottle
    • waterproof bag (for camera equipment)
    • straps to tie snowshoes on backpack
    • film and memory cards
    • hiking / walking poles
    • binoculars
    • head torch (flashlight)

Do not bring cotton clothing like T-shirts or jeans. Once they get wet, they will stay wet. This can increase the chance of hypothermia in sub-zero weather.

You must bring your own boots for technical mountaineering, but you can also use your own boots for basic mountaineering if you do not want to use our muck boots.

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