Mountain Leader Training
The Mountain Leader training course is six days packed full of learning in breathtaking scenery as you learn the skills to prepare you for the best job in the world!
The Mountain Leader is the most established award in the Mountain Training course structure. Its remit allows the holder to lead mountain walks in summer conditions on any mountain walking terrain within the United Kingdom. It is specifically aimed at the British mountains where technical ground and the unpredictability of the weather make our beautiful mountains potentially dangerous and demand competent and confident leaders.
Who is it for ?
The Mountain Leader training course is for those who want to lead groups in the mountains! It is the highest summer walking leadership award.
Mountain Leader Training Course Overview
Over six days we look at all aspects of leading groups in the mountains. We look at navigation in some detail and include a night camping in a remote mountain location.
Beyond the Edge are one of the UKs most experienced providers of Mountain Training courses and they are both highly informative and run by hugely experienced trainers. Importantly in our opinion, they are also fun and run in a friendly manner. We take great pride in the very high percentage of individuals who return for further courses.
The Mountain Leader training course is a great opportunity to be brought up to date on current best practice, and swap ideas with other like-minded people and boost your confidence even if you don’t want to work in the outdoors. At the end of the course you will receive detailed feedback on any areas that you may need to improve on together with a detailed action plan and a realistic timetable to assessment.
We run the course in several different ways to try and match peoples availability. We split the course into two three day blocks to reduce the amount of time you might have to take off work. On these split date courses you need to attend all elements to complete the training.
Mountain Leader Training Course Format
The Mountain Leader training course is largely practical in nature and we are outside every day. We use the evenings that we are not under canvas to cover theoretical aspects and develop a personal action plan that will take you to assessment. We normally start each day at 9am and are having a cuppa back down in the valley by about 5pm.
We don’t specify exactly what we do each day as a good mountain professional matches the objectives for the day with the weather, the group and other factors. Discussing what we do on a day allows us to explore the important skills of planning and decision making which you will use every day you are leading in the mountains. We do have the expedition date as fixed though in order for you to book accommodation. When this is depends on which style (split or otherwise) of course you choose.
Over the 6 days, the course covers:
- Navigation techniques for good and bad weather and / or at night.
- Group management
- Expedition skills including expedition planning
- Managing hazards, including security on steep ground
- Access, conservation and wider environmental knowledge
- Emergency procedures
On a split date course, the first three days are spent in the Peak District and the second set of three days are in N Wales, with two days of expedition in Wales.
The camp is usually on the last night of the training (night five) so you don’t need accommodation (except a tent) for that night.
Detailed guidance notes on the syllabus are available here.
- Location: Peak District & Snowdonia
- Cost: from £400 per person
- Duration: 6 days
- Ratio: 1:6
- Level: Instructor
All courses are six days long.
Split date courses:
Sat 4 May – Mon 6 May 2024 (Peak District) Sat 25 May – Mon 27 May (Snowdonia)
Sat 31 Aug – Mon 2 Sept 2024 (Peak District) Sat 21 Sept – Mon 23 Sept (Snowdonia)
Bespoke Dates and Locations
If there are two or more of you that want Mountain Leader training, and you would like some different dates or locations please contact the office and we will arrange some dates to suit your diary.
Where you meet depends on which style of Mountain Leader Training course you book on.
Our one continuous six day block courses meet in Capel Curig in Snowdonia.
Our two date split courses meet for the first three days in Grindleford in The Peak District and for the second block of three days in Capel Curig in Snowdonia.
You will need to bring all the equipment you need for multiple consecutive days in the mountains. Robust footwear and high quality waterproofs are absolutely essential.
A suggested kit list together with some top tips and links to gear reviews are in the joining instructions.
We give a few suggestions below, but a more detailed list together with a host of helpful links and videos are contained in our Mountain Leader Training Joining Instructions.
- The Mountain Leader Handbook contains all the details of the syllabus, the remit of the award and a skills check list. This Handbook can be downloaded from the Mountain Training website.
- The official handbook of Mountain Training’s walking schemes is: Mountain Training handbook – Volume 1. Hillwalking. Steve Long. Mountain Training.
- The BMC have a range of useful articles and a dedicated YouTube channel BMC TV covering a range of walking issues.
- Mountain Training also have a YouTube channel, which can be found here.
You require sufficient fitness to spend 6 days walking, two days of which will be with overnight camping equipment.
Regular full days of hillwalking is the best preparation, which also increases your skill level.
In order to attend a Mountain Leader training course you must meet the requirements listed below. You can however book beforehand and we will help guide you through the process.
- Be registered for the Mountain Leader scheme with Mountain Training before attending a training course. (See below)
- Be at least 18 years old.
- You must have recorded a minimum of 20 Quality Mountain Days (ideally on DLOG) which can have taken place at any point (pre- or post-registration). Some answers to frequently asked DLOG questions can be found on the Mountain Training website here.
Registration with Mountain Training
This is relatively straightforward and can be completed online at:
Here you can also find short videos explaining the award and other useful resources.
Please note you must register with Mountain Training specifically for the Mountain Leader scheme, in addition to other schemes you may have registered for.
This Beyond the Edge course is non-residential to allow you to select between a thermarest or 5 star hotel as you require. There are literally thousands of accommodation options in the Peak District, Lake District and Snowdonia from luxurious 5 star Spa hotels to campsites and everything in between.
In The Peak District, there is lots of accommodation in the Hope Valley and we recommend The Sir William which offers BtE clients a 10% discount and this course runs from here.
Other options are listed on our Accommodation page.
in Snowdonia, popular options (apart from the club huts) include The Rocks hostel and the Tyn y Coed Hotel in Capel Curig. Bryn Llewellyn Guest house in Betws-y-Coed. Youth Hostels in Ogwen, Betws y Coed, Pen-y-pass, Llanberis and Nant Gwynant and the Dol Gam camp site which benefits from being within walking distance of a pub.
On the three date split course that visits the Lake District we will camp overnight on the Saturday so no accommodation is required.
If you want a hand booking something or want something special, contact the office and we will endeavour to assist.
How do I book ?
The best way is via this webpage. Choose the date from the options on the above and then submit your booking and request an invoice or pay. If your course is under six weeks away you must pay the full amount.
For bespoke events get in touch first so we can check diaries and if required give you a quote. Get in touch by either calling the office on 01142 631 155 or emailing us.
Does the course include accommodation ?
Not usually! We prefer to let you choose where you will be most comfortable. This may be in a tent or in a luxury hotel.
On ML training courses one night is spent in a tent at a remote location, so you don’t need to book that night!
For all split date courses the first session is in the Peak District where we work out of the The Sir William hotel. This is a comfortable Inn with stunning views over the Hope valley and it also serves great food. We recommend that you stay here as they are well versed in looking after walkers and climbers, offer a 10% discount to BtE clients and it’s a 30 second commute from the breakfast table to our meeting room!
They can be contacted at email@example.com which is best as it allows them to answer when they have a spare few minutes or alternatively 01433 630 303 and ask to speak to Alan.
If this doesn’t suit you for whatever reason, further accommodation options can be found on our accommodation page.
On a three split course (3 sessions of 2 days) the second weekend is the Lake District, which we use for the expedition phase. This means we camp on the fell on the Saturday night so no accommodation is needed.
The third weekend of a three split course is in Snowdonia based out of Capel Curig and accommodation will be needed.
On a two split course (2 sessions of 3 days) the second session is in Snowdonia based out of Capel Curig. We cover the expedition phase on the last two days. One night is camping in the mountains, so accommodation is only needed for the first night of the three days.
Children, Parking, Dogs, COVID and everything else...
You will find all of the most frequently asked questions and their answers on our FAQ webpage.