Advanced Ski Mountaineering Course 4 days


Black Peak is a 5-7 hour skin from the summit of Treble Cone Ski Area or a 10 minute helicopter flight from the valley floor. The expense of flying in saves time and energy for the ensuing days' ski touring and instruction.  Our private hut is located at 1725m and is the perfect base from which to enjoy extensive & challenging ski and snowboard touring.

The Remarkables backcountry is accessed through the ski field and can be used as day trips from a comfortable base in Wanaka or Queenstown.

Extremely masterful fusion of professionalism & casualness

Kirk, Australia

The course met my expectations and pushed me quite a bit beyond my existing experience & knowledge levels.  I felt completely confident & at ease at all times with our guide Andrea. I really enjoyed the  safety tutorials/classes (avalanche safety, snow anchor theory, skinning technique, steep ski descents), the practical tips & hints on a range of techniques & activities (eg ski crampon usage, belaying without a belay device), the awesome terrain & landscape, and Andrea's cooking. I was impressed by the calmly positive & friendly attitude of all the Aspiring Guides team I interacted with - no big egos or haughty manners!  Thanks for a great time, Andrea & everyone. You have a very slick, smooth service that really provides great value for $.

More Information

This advanced ski mountaineering course will include the following topics:-

  • Ice axe and crampon use
  • Building snow and ice anchors
  • Abseiling and self rescue
  • Avalanche danger assessment, decision making and rescue
  • Navigation
  • Knots and hitches
  • Pitching and belaying
  • Glacier travel and crevasse rescue
  • Transitioning on steep terrain
  • Turning on steep and confined terrain

Available Dates

2018 Course Dates Status
5 - 8 Aug Open
14 - 17 Aug C: 3 places available
25 - 28 Aug FULL
10 - 13 Sept Open


C = trip confirmed to run


Technical Difficulty

Participants need previous experience with backcountry touring.  You will need to be a strong skier or boarder in off piste conditions. Participants should be able to control their speed on steep terrain. Snowboarders must be on splitboards and have a dedicated snowboard mountaineering boots. Some rock climbing or experieince with ropes is recommended.

Physical Difficulty

A good level of fitness is required.  Participants need to be able to travel up steep hills and be strong enough to handle variable conditions. Participants should be experienced skiing and boarding steep terrain and be comfortable with heights.

Price Details

Guide Ratio Price
1:2 $1,950
1:4 $1,550


What's Included
  • IFMGA/ NZMGA Guide
  • All technical mountaineering gear
  • Accommodation in private, cosy hut (sleeping bags already in place)
  • Food & Energy snacks
  • Course handbook
  • Satellite phone/ radio comms
  • 15% GST

Not included :

  • Helicopter ride to the hut or the peak on the first day is an additional expense (approx. NZ $190-225 pp).
  • Ski touring or splitboard equipment hire.

Itinerary / Trip Options (multi)

Prior to the trip

Meet with your guide at our offices 5pm on the evening prior to departure. Your guide will check clothing and equipment as required for the course. Rental equipment is issued and last minute purchases can be made. The weather forecast will be reviewed and a plan made for an early flight the following morning.

Trip Planning

Day 1

It is 15 minutes to the helicopter staging area and your lift into Black Peak.  Depositing the gear at the hut we often take advantage of having the helicopter to lift us to the summit of Black Peak for our first run.  Today is the time to brush up on your transceiver skills.  We will cover self party rescue and shovel techniques.  You instructor will make sure the group has solid fundamentals before advancing onto steeper slopes.  Important knots and basic rope work will be introduced early in the course.

Heli drop into Black Peak Hut

Day 2

The East Face of Black Peak offers numerous steep couloirs.  Learn about how to pick a safe line and protect your self and your partner.  Practice your jump turns in confined spaces.  This is the chance to learn your limits. Judgment is everything in steep skiing and with the watchful of your instructor you can get valuable experience.  In general the ski day goes from 9am to 4pm, with most evenings having an indoor talk.


Day 3

The Summit Rocks on Black Peak are a great venue for learning about snow and ice anchors.    It takes a lot of judgment to know how secure a snow anchor is and this is the time to practice and learn under the watchful eye of your instructor.  Abseiling with skis, learning self arrest with an ice axe and learning to crampon efficiently are key skills which will be learned.


Day 4

The route back to Cone Ski Area is as exciting as you want to make it.  You will be asked to prepare a navigation plan using map, compass and GPS. There is no easy route out and if you play your cards right it just might include a run down Bold Rush.  This is perfect chance to use your new route finding skills in avalanche terrain.


Equipment Details

This video provides practical demonstration of how alpine ski touring (AT) equipment works.

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