Hyalite Canyon has over a hundred different ice climbs, making it an ideal arena for ice climbers to progress from novice to advanced ice climbers.  This four day course is designed to teach the skills and techniques to make the complete novice or beginner in to a self sufficient ice climber with all the skills needed to tackle steep single pitch to multi-pitch climbs.

Our Ice Progression Course starts with a similar itinerary as the “Intro to Ice Course” and then evolves in to our “Advanced Ice Course”.  We will start with the basic skill and techniques that create the solid foundation you will need to progress in the sport. Just as it is with any building a solid foundation is key to building upward with you climbing.  With this base you will quickly gain the needed skills to progress.  We will then move in to more advanced steep ice climbing techniques, skill sets, and the knowledge needed to become a self-sufficient climber.

Climbing on steeper, harder ice climbs requires an array of advanced skills.  With the right skills and techniques you can eliminate unnecessary fatigue and danger in your climbing day.  In this clinic we will go over how to place solid ice screws and how to make even more solid anchors.  Your will learn how to manage ropes in multi pitch settings as well as how to place screws while on lead (mock leading), both skills are necessary in order to move quick during short winter days.  You will also get plenty of mileage in on the ice as your instructor offers tips and skills for climbing on steep ice.


Day 1
8:00am at Hyalite Trail Head

  • Welcome, introduction, aspirations, goals, and agenda
  • Knots, harnesses, and ropes
  • Set crampons to boots and check harnesses
  • Discussion of safety procedures
  • Basic Ice Movement – foot work with crampons and ice tool placements
  • Basic belay techniques and belay commands
  • Top-rope climbs in Hyalite Canyon.
  • Lowering

Day 2
8:00 am at Hyalite Trail Head

  • Warm up climb and how to stay warm while ice climbing.
  • Intro to steep ice climbing techniques and the pyramid technique
  • Climbing with instruction/coaching on steeper climbs. With proper technique you will quickly progress in the ice climbing grades.
  • Practice “following” a “lead” ice climber, cleaning gear from a good stance

Day 3
9:00am at Hyalite Trail Head

  • Warm up climb
  • Reading the ice for protection: good vs. bad ice
  • Ice screw placement, v threads, other ice protection
  • Ice screw placement on steep terrain
  • Advanced anchor building
  • Lots of climbing with technique coaching

Day 4
9:00am at Hyalite Trail Head

  • Warm-up climb
  • Set up anchors with final assessment by instructors
  • How to place protection on lead
  • Simulated lead climbing (on top rope)
  • Avalanche risk assessments and other objective hazards
  • Introduction to mixed climbing as time permits
  • Introduction to multi-pitch scenarios as time permits
Ice Progression Bonus Day

Dates: Feb 5, Mar 5
Cost: $250
Ratio: 2:1 (minimum of 2 participants)

Put your honed-in ice climbing skills to use on a private guided ice climb on one of Hyalite Canyon’s test piece ice climbs. The focus will be to climb a magnificent route while bringing a teaching scenario along with us. The venue will depend on conditions, possible routes include: “The Good Looking One”, “Cleopatra’s Needle”, “Responsible Family Man”, “Killer Pillar” and many more!

Equipment List


  • Boots: single insulated ice climbing boot with crampon compatibility*
  • Climbing Harness*
  • Climbing Helmet*
  • Ice Tools (2)*
  • Crampons: step in with vertical front points must fit your boots*
  • Belay Device and locking carabiner*

**We can provide these items but we must know in advance, particularly boot size**


If your body runs cold you may want to add another layer

  • Long underwear, mid-weight (top & bottom), synthetic or wool.
  • Soft shell pant (lightly insulated)
  • Fleece or sweater (medium or lightweight)
  • Fleece (heavyweight)-have as backup in case your trip is during a cold snap
  • Insulated jacket (down or synthetic)
  • Waterproof jacket with hood (Gore-Tex)
  • Waterproof pants  (Gore-Tex)
  • Socks (mid-weight)
  • Hat: fleece or wool hat that covers ears & fits under a helmet
  • Gloves: one thin pair (medium weight) and one thick pair
  • Gaiters (optional)
  • Neck gaiter/buff or scarf


  • Daypack: 40-55L with ice tool carrying capabilities.
  • Sun screen
  • Sunglasses
  • Thermos: optional but wonderful to have
  • 1-liter water bottle with insulated sleeve (full!)
  • Food for the day: energy bars, GU packs or Hammer Gels
  • Hint: keep some food in your pockets so it doesn’t freeze.
  • Camera (optional), we have Go Pro helmet cam mounts.


  • Headlamp
  • Super light 10-20-liter pack to bring on route for belay coat, H2O, and food
  • Alternatively have method to clip above items to harness.
  • Optional second base layer top to change in to after long sweaty approaches
  • Plastic ice-screw holders that are pre-mounted to your harness

Course Duration

4 Days

Course Dates

  • Feb 1-4
  • Mar 1-4