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Indoor Ice Climbing

by Red Letter Days


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Fort William, Scottish Highlands:: It's vertical, freezing and 50 feet high. And you're going to climb it. More than five times bigger than any other indoor ice climbing wall in the world, this is the perfect place to go ice climbing, even if you've never handled an ice axe before. After getting kitted out, you'll get a full briefing on safety and basic climbing techniques. Then you'll tackle the ice wall, with constant supervision from your expert instructor, using a top-roped belay safety system. There are routes ranging from simple, easy angled slopes for the beginner, through to gully features and hanging bollards for more experienced climbers. It's a thrilling experience - and one that you may get addicted to! Availability: 9am to 10pm, seven days a week. Allow at least four weeks advance notice for weekend bookings. Weather: Duration: Your experience will last for about one and a half hours, including briefings, kit issue and a minimum of one hour in the ice bay. Please arrive a few minutes early to ensure a prompt start. Numbers On Day: A 1:4 ratio of instructors to climbers gives the best input and most climbing. A maximum of 12 people will be on the wall at any one time. Spectators: Spectators are welcome and can watch from a special viewing area. There is a cafe serving hot and cold drinks and a selection of food. Dress Code: Wear waterproofs if you have them, and lots of warm layers (multiple thin layers are more effective than a single bulky layer). Climbing equipment, warm clothing and specialist ice-climbing boots will be provided. Guidelines: Kinlochleven is in the western highlands of Scotland near Ben Nevis and Glencoe, around two hours' drive north of Glasgow. From the A82 take the B863. Once you enter Kinlochleven the venue is well signposted. Restrictions: Minimum age is 14. Parental consent is required for under 16's. There are no weight or height restrictions, but the minimum boot size is adult four. You'll need to be reasonably fit; as a guide you should be able to hold a 1kg weight at arms length. Other Info: The Ice Factor is the National Ice Climbing Centre and at 800 square metres is the world's largest indoor ice-climbing wall, with an ice cave, ice pillar, neve wall and fall-out gully.

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