Rjukan Ice - Norway
18th - 25th February 2018
2nd-9th February 2019
Norway is a magical country perhaps best known for its stunning natural environment, friendly locals and great adventure opportunities. There are challenges for all outdoor lovers, but for climbers it is surely heaven on earth.
In summer there are options like the beautiful Lofoten Islands or the famous Troll Wall and in winter there is…..Rjukan! Drop that name and ice climbers in the know will smile sweetly. Norway’s deep valleys, wet climate and reliable low winter temperatures have created a truly magical playground - there’s a very good reason Rjukan has rapidly established itself as a major ice climbing Mecca.
Peak Mountaineering first visited over 10 years ago and it has just got better and better over the years. There is an excellent accommodation infrastructure, quality guidebooks, efficient travel options from the UK and over 150 ice routes ranging from gentle single pitchers perfect for beginners through to multi pitch challenges that will test the budding ice Jedi.
What’s on offer?
We want our Rjukan adventure to be available to all and have options for every experience level.
Beginner - Rjukan has a wide range of single pitch ice routes offering perfect options for introductory level ice climbers. Over 5 action packed days our expert instructors will teach you all you need to know to get you climbing ice confidently and efficiently - all you need to provide is the enthusiasm! We have the technical equipment to lend you and you’ll just need plenty of warm clothes and suitable boots (we can provide links to companies that can these hire items to you if needed). Learning to climb ice in one of the best winter venues on the planet - it doesn’t get cooler than that!
Intermediate - For those who have some prior climbing skills and experience climbing in winter…..welcome to paradise! Over 5 climbing days you will experience the best of Rjukan as well as learning the skills to keep yourself safe in this vertical playground. The route grades will be tailored to suit your experience level but we’ll focus on technically and physically engaging mid-grade options. The broad range of single and multi-pitch climbs will both inspire and test and don’t even think you’ll have those long walk ins - a few Rjukan routes are roadside, some we abseil into and many are only a short walk through the forest. It is often possible to climb as many Rjukan routes in a day as you’d fit in a Scottish week!
Advanced/Private Guiding - If you have considerable summer and winter climbing experience you may like to consider a more bespoke option. That could be ticking some classic winter routes under the guidance of one of our expert instructors or getting into winter leading. We can offer a considerable level of flexibility to your needs so do get in touch if you want to plan a bespoke itinerary.
Who are the instructors and what are the ratios?
Your guides will be fully qualified Mountain Instructors Certificate holders who are also members of the Association of Mountaineering Instructors. All courses will be run on a maximum of 2 clients to 1 instructor (you can select 1:1 guiding and the price for this is simply double the 1:2 amount). Please note that some companies will run itineraries with higher ratios and the cost may be less, but we believe this offers a less educational and safety compromised option.
How much will it cost?
There is no hiding the fact that a guided climbing holiday in Norway is never going to fall into your bargain holiday category! Norway is a very expensive country and low ratio guiding by highly qualified instructors is always going to add up. Having said that, this is so much more than any normal holiday!
To keep things transparent we keep it simple. Our fee covers professional guiding, the loan of any technical equipment and logistical support. Participants will then be asked to cover their own transport and accommodation. We have isolated the relevant likely costs under the various sections below and beyond that the instruction price for the 6 days is £750 per person. You can secure the booking with a 30% deposit (£225) and participants are then simply asked to settle the balance within 12 weeks of the departure date (feel free to pay in instalments too if you prefer).
What is the format for the week?
After arrival in Rjukan on Sunday evening we’ll discuss plans for the following day and get everything organised. We’ll then head out after breakfast on day 2 and visit one of the easy to access venues to start our adventure. Development will progress at a speed that suits you, but over the next few days we’ll visit a range of locations carefully picked to match your aspirations and experience level. After 3 days of climbing you’ll find your arms screaming for a break and so we leave Thursday as a rest day. This offers the chance to ski at the nearby ski area or maybe visit the heavy water plant at Vemork (Rjukan played a very important part in wartime history as the site of Hitler’s heavy water plant during WW2). Of course, you may also prefer to use the rest day simply to rest! We’ll then get back to the ice on Friday and Saturday before departure on Sunday.
How do we get there?
Rjukan is accessible from a number of UK airports offering flexibility to participants. The nearest airport to Rjukan is Oslo (Torp) which is a couple of hours drive away. We don’t book flights for clients but can guide you to good options. For example, Ryan Air currently have flights from Manchester to Oslo (Torp) for around £140 return. Participants can travel from any airport but we simply ask you to be at Oslo (Torp) airport by no later than 5pm on Sunday 18th February.
What about transport within Norway
Participants will be asked to contribute to hire cars for the duration of the trip. This usually works out at about £100 per person.
Where do we stay?
Over the years we have stayed at a variety of both catered hotels and self-catering lodges but gradually have realised that a catered hotel makes more sense. Self-catered places sound like a better bargain but, given the price of supermarket food (expensive!) and the hassle of cooking after a tiring day are factored in, suddenly a hotel with food makes far more sense! It usually costs about £350 for the 6 nights in a catered hotel and we will help arrange this.