If you’re looking for an unconventional way to develop new skills and you have a passion for the outdoors, you may find yourself considering Mountain Leader training courses. You might not think of the UK as the most obvious location to undergo this kind of training, but in fact it’s ideal thanks to a range of fantastic locations around the country and the selection of courses backed by the government.
For example, Mountain Leader training in the Lake District, Cumbria, may be an ideal option to consider. The natural landscape here is perfectly suited to practical training for hiking and mountaineering, allowing you to cover the entire range of skills and specialisms required to earn a Mountain Leader Training Award or Assessment Award on a relatively short course. There are other options across the UK, but this is one of the most popular.
In general, many such courses will follow certain requirements regardless of which provider you choose or where in the country you decide to carry out your training. This is true of any provider offering National Governing Body courses, which are the most valued and widely recognised qualifications you can usually do within this field.
Typically a Mountain Leader course will last six days from official UK providers. These tend to be conducted during the spring or autumn, since weather conditions are likely to be too disruptive during the winter, and in summer the nights are not sufficiently long or dark to complete the night navigation aspects of the course.
Usually it is expected that participants already own their own mountaineering and camping equipment, including tents, although many providers will allow you to borrow these for the course of your training if required. It is essential that you have at least 20 “mountain days” of properly recorded experience, plus you need to be over the age of 18 and already registered as a member of a Mountaineering Council in the UK.