This event is open to all Explorer Scouts over the aged of 15, Scout Network and Leaders from all Sections within the County.

For the younger members, they’ll get to learn the basic skills and experience Scottish Winters with overnights out in the wilds and the social crack on a residential. For older members, there’ll be opportunities to develop your skills to be self sufficient in the mountains, understand the risks and grow experience in a controlled environment. Those with more experience will be able to hone their skills further, obtain permits and in so doing benefit scouting within West Lancashire.

Once again we are using online applications. Any correspondance will be via email, sms and this website.


Please note we are running from Friday evening to Wednesday afternoon of the February halfterm. Costs are still coming under pressure with food, but we’ve tried to keep these to a minimum. Boot hire is generally needed for novices and is £25 for the event. Waterproofs have been kept at last year's prices.

To apply

Read through the details of Snow and Ice below, or speak to others that have been previous years to decide if this is for you.

Complete the online application, then within two weeks send the full payment. This should be in the form of two Cheques. (Cheque 1: £100 deposit. Cheque 2: £100 remainder, post dated 5th January 2015). Unsuccessful applicants will have these cheques returned.

Await confirmation. The opening date is 15th October, after this date it will be on a first come, first served basis. Confirmations will be going out once I receive your cheques. Unfortunately once your place is confirmed we can not guarantee to refund the deposit.

If you have any questions, feel free to email us on snowice@landactivities.com

You can follow your application and using the Who's Applied link.


Up in Minibuses, Sunday Evening 15 Feb; 4 mountain days, Sunday to Thursday; Return by Minibuses, Friday Morning 20 Feb.


We will be based in the Cairngorm area of Scotland. Accommodation will be in Nethy House, Nethy Bridge, just north of Aviemore, with easy access to the Cairngorm Mountains and further a field. The House itself copes with a maximum of 67 in bunk style accommodation. Excluding staff, this allows us to have a maximum of 45 participants.


Anyone from the County wishing to develop their own skills, gain more experience or simply have four days of mountain activity will be very welcome. The Scottish Winters can be quite demanding and the distances that we generally are walking, means that any participant should be reasonably fit, at minimum is a regular walker, and is capable of four long physically demanding days in the hills.

Explorer Scouts over the age of 15 will be VERY welcome, as long as they are mature, fit, self-reliant, and a good sense of humour. There are SOME exceptionally fit Scouts, but generally youngsters only develop stamina around 15. Because of this, we ask, Explorer Scouts to check with your Leaders to affirm that they are physically capable of taking part and benefiting from this experience.

There are opportunities for Explorer Scout Leaders with an interest in hill walking and particularly if they are aslo D1 MIDAS drivers, to join our Leader Team. Please contact Tim Stewart for further details.


The plan is for everyone to travel up in Minibuses - leaving the County by 16.00hrs on the Friday. This should get us to Nethy House before midnight. Based on 67, we will be arranging for five minibuses – pick up points to be arranged once we know who’s coming. Everyone will return on Wednesday morning and be dropped off where they were picked up. All times & pick-ups will be confirmed two weeks before the event via email and the website.


You'll certainly need an ice axe and crampons. We have a good stock of spare axes and crampons - but anyone who has been on this programme for more than two years should really by now have their own. If your personal gear is designed for summer use you need to think about updating or borrowing… or getting for Xmas!

Bring expedition gear with you if you are considering this.

You will need a good pair of waterproof walking boots. Fabric/suede trainer-type or floppy boots are not acceptable, nor safe, nor suitable for the winter conditions expected. We have a stock of good quality Mountain Boots and Wind/Waterproof Jacket afnd Trousers. There will be a hire charge of £25 (Boots) and £15 (Wind/Waterproofs) . Please reserve these on your application. For safety reasons, those with inadequate gear will be expected to hire ours. A full equipment list is available online, you'll find the kitlist.


This is dependent upon the prevailing weather conditions. This is NOT a “formal” training course and participants can very much choose their activities, apart from the first day when, for safety purposes, everyone is given a winter skills technical refresher. Experienced Mountain Leaders are available to provide Leadership and Instruction for Groups venturing into the mountains, and can help develop snow and ice techniques and navigational skills. We cater for all levels of skills and experience including both low level and high level winter walking, through to gully and ice climbing.

fThere will be the possibility of a walk to a mountain bothy for an overnight stay, or on a two day expedition through the Lairig Ghru or Strath Nethy from Braemar to Glenmore. In the evenings there will be opportunities for further discussion and training, or just to have a good crack in the Nethy House bar.

This event is about providing an all-round mountain experience and as such there will be an opportunity on the event for skiing. Whether that be on piste at either Cairngorm Mountain or the Lecht, back country in the Glenmore forests or ski mountaineering on the Cairngorm Plateau. All of these will be snow condition dependant.

There will also be an opportunity for higher level Permit assessments with prior arrangement with Geoff, the County Land Activities Adviser. Over 18 Rules may be applied if required although, because you are participating in an organised event, we reserve the right to ask you to modify your intentions on the grounds of safety.

Leadership, Instructors & Safety

A team of experienced mountain leaders with backgrounds in Winter, Alpine mountaineering and Arctic Expeditions will be available for instruction, leadership and mountain supervision. Because of the potentially serious nature of some of the activities, everybody must agree to comply with any “recommendations” (instructions!) given. We again have Andy Brown MIC BASI, the County’s Technical Mountaineering Adviser, with us.


This event is an all-in package - bunk accommodation, transport and food (haute cuisine from Aunty Bob and team). We provide from the time you arrive at Nethy House, to when you depart. Nosh-stops will be made on the journey and we suggest you supplement our packed lunches with a few of your own hi-energy food, cereal bars, Mars bars, etc.


The cost of event is £200. These costs are inclusive of accommodation, transport, food and equipment (excluding boots & wind/waterproofs). There will also be an additional cost for some activities like skiing or mountain biking for hire of equipment. Full payment is expected at time of applying.

Polo Shirts

Participants will have the opportunity to purchase Dark Blue, West Lancashire Scouts Mountaineering Group Polo shirts, with the SNOW & ICE logo as a souvenir. These will cost £17 and payment is expected at the time of your booking.