Everett Branch Basic Alpine Climbing

Everett Branch Basic Alpine Climbing

Everett Branch Home Page
Everett Climbing Home Page


Our BCC equips you with fundamental climbing skills and experience, using classroom and field instruction. We will teach techniques of roped climbing on rock, snow and glaciers. We concentrate on basic climbing techniques and mountaineering skills, including rope handling, knots, belaying, rappelling, crevasse rescue and safety.

The course is demanding, but the rewards are great. These skills open the door to a lifetime of outdoor enjoyment. Course graduates are eligible to participate in Basic Climbs, Club Climbs, the Intermediate Climbing Course, and other advanced climbing seminars periodically offered by the Everett branch.


Applicants need to be experienced in off-trail hiking and camping. You must make a significant investment in time, energy, psychological preparation, and money. Solid overall physical conditioning and psychological ability to handle vertical exposure is essential. If you lack these basic skills and conditioning, please consider enrolling in the Mountaineers Alpine Scrambling Course before taking the Basic Climbing Course.


Required equipment will cost several hundreds of dollars. Please do not purchase any equipment prior to this course. We provide a complete list of required equipment on the first night of the course. Equipment must be rated for alpine climbing, including proper footwear, clothing, pack, climbing helmet, seat harness, carabiners and related climbing hardware, ice axe, crampons and a variety of other gear. While some equipment can be rented, most equipment will need to be purchased.

Textbook: The Freedom of the Hills, 7th or 8th edition. This book is required to study and prepare for lectures and exams.


The course is open to any Mountaineers member at least 18 years old, regardless of branch affiliation.


All applications are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis, during the signup time which is typically late fall.  Check here for registration, or contact the BCC Coordinator, Laurel Geisbush, for more information.   Mountaineers membership is required for enrollment.


  • 1/18: Lecture 1*
  • 2/1: Practice Session 1**
  • 2/8: Lecture 2
  • 2/15: Lecture 3
  • 2/18: Fundamentals Fieldtrip 
  • 3/8: Lecture 4
  • 3/14: Practice Session 2**
  • 3/18: Rock 1 Fieldtrip
  • 3/22-23: Midterm Written and Practical Exam***
  • 4/3: Practice Session 3**
  • 4/19: Lecture 5
  • 4/22-23: Rock 2 Fieldtrip
  • 5/3: Lecture 6
  • 5/13-14: Snow 1 Fieldtrip
  • 5/24: Practice Session 4**
  • 5/31: Lecture 7
  • 6/3-4: Snow 2 Fieldtrip
  • 6/7-8: Final Practical Exam***

*Lectures will be conducted over Zoom or MS Teams from 6:30pm to 8:45pm.

**The Practice Sessions are hosted in the Seattle Program Center to provide demos of key skills that you will learn in class, and to allow students to practice their skills with instructor volunteers. Please block out from 6 pm - 9pm for these practice sessions.

***The Mid Term and Final Exams are held at the Seattle Program Center and are a two part exam of a practical test and a written test administered online. Please block out from 6pm - 9pm for these 2 practical exam sessions.


  1. Attend all field trips and lectures.
  2. Successful completion of all field trips.
  3. Passing score on skills tests and on written exams.
  4. Current Mountaineers membership.
  5. Current Wilderness First Aid certification.
  6. Completion of Mountaineers Navigation Course
  7. Completion of 3 required experience climbs, including at least one glacier and one rock climb by Oct. 1
  8. Do a day of trail or lookout maintenance
  9. Petition Climbing Committee by date listed in course schedule.
  10. Climbing Committee approval

Get a glimpse of what our Field Trips look like!

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