Essential Equipment Kit List


Everything you need, and nothing you don’t.

Everyone has different preferences, but I typically use everything I pack in a day, except my emergency gear. I also experiment widely, though cautiously if tackling a new route. This leads to me wearing some old favourites or carrying them if testing new clothing. Routes I know well require a minimum of technical gear but everyone needs plenty of food and sleep to enjoy a climb safely.

Ben Nevis Kit List

  • Waterproofs: Trousers and a hooded jacket are essential
  • Boots, rather than trainers
  • Spare fleece, hat, gloves and sunscreen
  • Plasters or Compeed for blisters
  • Food (lunch and tea)
  • Waterbottle
  • If you have a map and compass we will be very happy to demistify any aspect of mountain navigation you may bring with you. You may also find your aspirations closer to reality on the day!
  • We will also take a first aid kit, shelter and walking pole for emergencies.
  • Please try to anticipate the enormity of this challenge and do not plan to drive more than two hours afterwards.

Scottish Winter Kit List

  • Waterproofs: the most breathable (recently proofed) jacket and trousers are essential.
  • Fleece or woollen tops and trousers
  • Wicking base layer (not cotton)
  • Plenty of socks
  • Stiff boots (B2 or B3) and gaiters. Well-fitting crampons.
  • Maps: OS sheet 41 and Harveys 1:25,000 Ben Nevis and Glencoe
  • Waterproof case and compass, wristwatch
  • Mountaineering ice axe or pair of climbing tools and belay plate
  • Helmet and harness
  • Torch and whistle
  • Hat and gloves plus spares
  • Sunglasses, sun-cream and Ski goggles
  • Flask or water bottle
  • Lunch plus spare food
  • Emergency survival bag (6’ by 3’ orange poly bag)
  • Rucksack (between 35 and 55ltrs) and waterproof liner
  • Group Items Supplied
  • First aid kit
  • Group shelter
  • Rope, slings etc
  • Snow shovel
  • Please donʼt hesitate to call me about kit prior to the course. The devilʼs in the detail!
  • We can supply boots, crampons helmets and harnesses for hire at cost.
  • Please let me know sizes required as early as you can.

Skye Ridge Kit List

  • Lightweight waterproofs, recently proofed
  • Supportive boots: not too stiff, nor too old!
  • Climbing helmet and warm, thin hat
  • Gardening gloves, or prepare to lose some fingerprints:)
  • Sunhat, sunscreen and midge repellent
  • Water bottles, Straw
  • Baby wipes, when there’s no sphagnum moss!
  • Single walking pole
  • Sleeping bag, bivibag and kipmat
  • Food (3lb, tasty)
  • Harness, belay plate, sling and 2 Karabiners MAX
  • 2 or 3 pairs socks
  • Waterproof bags for phone and clothes.
  • Camera
  • 38m rope (we’ll supply this)

Alpine Kit List (for reference only)

  • Boots, stop-tous, socks: 2000g
  • 900g 40L rucksack
  • 400g waterproof trousers
  • Merino baselayer, fleece, duvet jacket and 500g hooded waterproof
  • Balaclava, 2 pairs leather gloves
  • 9.2mm x 60m single rope: 3000g
  • 60m, 6mm rap cord: 1750g
  • 2x 600g ice tools
  • 1pr crampons: 820g
  • Helmet & harness: 350g each
  • Belay plate
  • 5 Screwgate karabiners
  • 2 short prussiks
  • 10 sling-draws
  • 3x 8ft slings
  • Full-strength daisychain
  • Nuts 1-9
  • 1-4 cams
  • 2-4 Ice screws various lengths plus threader
  • 1-3 pegs
  • Headtorch: 100g
  • Map & compass
  • Route description and topo (photocopy)
  • 2x water bottles
  • Glacier glasses, sunscreen.
  • Mobile phone and camera in waterproof bags.
  • Credit card & Insurance details (essential)
  • Duct tape and cable ties in small 1st aid kit
  • 1500g waterproof sleeping bag/ bivibag combo
  • 1000g food per day
  • 200g short kipmat
  • Stove, windshield, large gas bottle and 2x lighters
  • Spoon, sharp knife
  • 6-12 Plastic doggie bags
  • Please note, West Highland Guides do not hold the IFMGA carnet to work in the European Alps.
  • Additional equipment should justify the extra time we spend carrying it.