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Think Winter

Mountaineering clothing and equipment

Mountaineering is a step up in seriousness from hill walking, and it's important that your clothing and equipment keep pace with that change.

You will already have much of the clothes and kit, but it is recommended that you wear or carry the following items to deal safely with Scotland’s mountains in winter.

Winter kit list

To wear:

  • Warm/windproof trousers
  • Thermal long johns (optional)
  • Thermal top
  • Fleece top
  • Rigid-soled winter boots, with appropriate socks
  • Gaiters
  • Warm hat
  • Gloves or mitts


To carry:

  • Rucksack - about 45 litres
  • Waterproof jacket (with hood)
  • Waterproof over-trousers
  • Spare layer e.g. fleece top
  • Spare gloves/mitts (at least two pairs)
  • Spare hat
  • Compass
  • Map (waterproof or in waterproof case)
  • Watch
  • Torch (preferably a head torch)
  • Spare batteries for the torch - or, preferably, a spare headtorch
  • Emergency survival bag (polythene is OK) and Group Shelter
  • Whistle
  • First Aid Kit (small)
  • Mobile phone
  • Sun cream
  • Sunglasses – sometimes the sun does shine in winter!
  • Goggles – essential for navigation in some conditions
  • Walking poles (optional)
  • Ice axe
  • Crampons
  • Food and drink
  • Hot drink in a thermos flask
  • Spare high energy foods (e.g. sweets or chocolate)

In addition you may consider a snow shovel and a helmet.

And don’t forget, it is no use having all the kit if you have no idea how to use it! If you are planning on venturing into the winter hills for the first time why not treat yourself to one of our winter skills courses?

Ever wondered why a winter rucksack looks bigger than the one you take in summer? Check out this advice from Glenmore Lodge on what to wear and what to take with you for a day out in winter conditions.