Call The Mountaineer for Availability 518-576-2281


Please consult the Course Equipment Lists before signing up for a clinic.


FULL – Ice Climbing 101 with James Pitaressi, AKA “Doctor Ice” – $155

(due to popular demand, we’ve added a third beginner’s clinic on Monday!)

Join us for a full day of co-ed Ice Climbing! This course is designed for those who have little or no experience with climbing ice. You will learn the basics of climbing systems, how to tie in to a rope, belaying, swinging an ice tool and proper use of crampons. At the end of the day you should have a basic understanding of ice climbing and why we love this sport! 

Limited to 12 participants.

FULL – “Learn to Lead” Workshop With Will Roth- $165 (Limited to 4 participants) 

Learn to lead ice with Rock and River Guide Will Roth. Ice is more than just being able to place an ice screw and clipping a rope to it. Reading the ice, setting up belays in the ice, belaying the second, force analysis, rappel anchors, rappelling, and some self-rescue skills need to be included along with placing ice screws. This course will cover all of those skills in a workshop style course with one guide and four students. The skills will be demonstrated by the instructor and then practiced by the participants in a top rope setting doing mock leads on a 35 foot ice wall that has low angle to steeper sections of ice. More advanced topics such as fall forces, v threads, injured party rappels and advanced retreat/descent methods will also be discussed/practice. Candidates must have prior ice climbing experience and have followed either a rock or ice climb before.  The emphasis of this course is on leading ice rather than improving your ice climbing skills. 

FULL – Intro To Mountaineering with Chad Kennedy and Mark Scott  $165

Rock & River Guides Chad and Mark will be teaching the basic principles of “Mountaineering”. This course is aimed at people who have limited experience. In this course you’ll learn proper crampon skills, use of a mountaineering axe and basic rope systems used in mountaineering. You will cover topics such as packing and preparing for a winter ascent in the mountains.  You can expect to be climbing and descending low angle terrain in which you will encounter ice, snow, rock or all of the above! 

Limited to 8 participants

FULL – M2: Intermediate Ice with Matt Horner and Matt Shove$165

The two Matt’s are some of the best ice climbers in the northeast, but more importantly, excellent and enthusiastic teachers! These guys present their tips and tricks directly to the participants in this clinic! You’ll walk away with a better understanding of how strength equals confidence on steeper ice and why dialing in your footwork and relaxing can make the difference between sending a route or not. The duo will teach skills needed to climb intermediate ice and touch on some more advanced concepts.

Limited to 8 participants

FULL – Poke-O-Moonshine Waterfall Ice with Patagonia Ambassador Anne Gilbert Chase – $180 

We’re stoked to be returning to Pok-o-moonshine! This is an advanced clinic where participants will be climbing grade 5 ice with Anne Chase. Anne has made winter ascents of routes like Winter Dance (WI6+ M8) in Hyalite Canyon to the first female ascent of the coveted Slovak Direct (5.9 R WI6+ M6, 9’000′) on Denali and throughout the Bugaboos.  Anne will be sharing her tricks of the trade at one of the premier steep ice venues in the Adirondacks. Thanks to our partnership with Patagonia, this charity event is made possible with their support.

Limited to 8 participants

FULL – X-Rated Climbing: Steep, Thin and Hard Ice Techniques with Ian Osteyee (Intermediate/Advanced) – $170 (Limited to 6 participants)

CAMP, BlueWater Ropes and Rab athlete Ian Osteyee has established X-rated first ascents from here to Nepal – routes like Ruination (WI6 X) at Poko and Shaugdro (WI5 X) in Khumbu, Nepal. Renowned for climbing the unclimbable – desperately thin, steep and demanding ice with little or no gear – Ian will show you how he makes it look easy. Come prepared to learn the ice tool tuning tips, climbing techniques and tricks that allow the confidence to climb these mentally and physically challenging routes. 

FULL – Steep Ice for the Weak and Chickenhearted with Don Mellor – $165

This is a targeted course aimed at getting normal people up abnormally steep routes. It is aimed at people who know how to climb, but find themselves unable to lead sustained vertical ice. The theme is this: if someone told you not to do it, it probably works. This is not about powering your way up. It’s about slithering and groveling, engaging your knees, your elbows, and especially your brain. It’s not pretty, but we promise that you’ll be happily surprised. You already know about supposed “good technique,” and you are still getting pumped. This course will give you a very different perspective and a whole lot of subtle tricks.Hear what others are saying about Steep Ice for the Weak and Chickenhearted:

“I feel ten years younger. When I look in the mirror, I see the person I am supposed to be.”

“My friends have noticed the change. I’m sleeping better. My appetite is back.”

“My libido… it’s like I’m seventeen again.”

Warning: Do not take this course if you take nitrates, often prescribed for chest pain, as this may cause a sudden, unsafe drop in blood pressure. Discuss your general health status with your doctor to ensure that you are healthy enough to engage in steep ice climbing. If you experience chest pain, nausea, or any other discomforts during climbing, or if you experience a sudden loss of vision or hearing, seek immediate medical help. In the rare event of an ice lead lasting more than 4 hours, seek immediate medical help to avoid long-term injury. You owe it to yourself to take Don Mellor’s Steep Ice for the Weak and Chickenhearted. Call now.

Limited to 8 participants

Adventure Snowshoeing with Carl Heilman – $95

Join us for a not so typical snowshoe tour adventure! After covering some helpful winter info inside, we’ll head out for a backcountry snowshoeing tour that introduces people to backcountry snowshoeing techniques. This is a fun, off the trail adventure-climbing up hills, and sliding back down them. You’ll learn and put to use various helpful snowshoeing techniques on a winter hike to a mountain ridge viewpoint. This tour is led by Carl Heilman, a seasoned guide, along with his son, Carl Jr. who have close to 60 years of combined experience with introducing people to the backcountry.

Limited to 8 participants

The ABC’s of Avalanche Awareness With Chuck Boyd – $95

If you are an avid mountaineer or backcountry skier, having the skills to assess avalanche terrain and make the right decisions is critical.  

This course teaches you how the terrain, weather, and snowpack affect the stability of the slopes you’re going to ski, ride, and/or climb.  The emphasis will be on recognizing the terrain and conditions for stability and travel techniques to identify safer routes.  Other important aspects of traveling in the backcountry that will be discussed are the use of avalanche rescue equipment and companion rescue.

Climbers and skiers, if you want hands on training with avalanche beacons, shovels, and probes, you should  sign up for a half day of rescue practice (Sun. or Mon., $45 fee). If you take Saturday’s course the additional fee is only $15.  You can bring your own equipment, or there will be equipment available for you to use.  We’ll spend the half day outdoors learning how to use the tools and practicing the basic skills for companion rescue.

(Limited to 20 participants) *we will open a second FULL day class if Saturday fills*


Please consult the Course Equipment Lists before signing up for a clinic


FULL – Ice Climbing 101 with James Pitarresi AKA “Doctor Ice” – $155

Course same as Saturday (limit 12 participants)

FULL – “Learn to Lead Workshop” with Ragged Mountain Guide Matt Shove – $165

Same Course as Saturday.

(Limited to 4 participants) 

FULL – Climb a Slide with Mark Scott and Jeremy Haas – $175 

Join Rock & River Guides Mark Scott and Jeremy Haas for a technical ascent of one of the many slides found in the High Peaks. Practice fundamental snow/ice climbing skills and rope techniques for safe and efficient travel over exposed alpine terrain. This clinic is suitable for participants who: have the fitness to winter hike for six hours; are proficient with the use of mountaineer axes/crampons; have experience with roped climbing, i.e. glacier travel and/or top roping. 

Limited to 6 participants.

FULL – Poke-O-Moonshine Waterfall Ice with Patagonia Ambassador Colin Haley – $180

We’re heading back to Poko! This is an advanced clinic were participants will be climbing grade 5 ice. Patagonia Ambassador Colin Haley will be here to share his skills with all of you! Colin is one of, if not the premier Alpinist on the scene! He has made ascents from Alaska to Patagonia, the Himalayas and everything in between. Most recently Colin raced up the Cassin Ridge on Denali in 8hrs and 7min!  Thanks to our partnership with Patagonia, this charity event is made possible with their support.  

Limited to 8 participants

FULL – Steep Ice for the Weak and Chickenhearted with Don Mellor – $165

Course same as Saturday

Limited to 8 participants

FULL – X-Rated Climbing: Steep, Thin and Hard Ice Techniques with Ian Osteyee (Intermediate/Advanced) – $170

Course same as Saturday (limit 6 participants)

FULL – M2: Intermediate to Advanced Ice with Matt Horner and Matt McCormick – $165

Course same as Saturday

Limited to 8 participants



FULL – Ice Climbing 101 with James Pitarresi AKA Doctor Ice – $155

Due to popular demand, we have decided to hold another Co-ed Beginning Ice clinic on Monday.  Course same as Saturday & Sunday (limit 8 participants). * NOTE* Monday’s clinic will meet at Rock and River Guide House

FULL – NEW this year! Intro to Multi-pitch Climb – $180

Climb one of the local, classic Multi-pitch ice routes with Rock and River Guides Mark Scott and Chad Kennedy. This course will introduce you to the world of bigger ice routes in the Adirondack High Peaks Region and is aimed at participants looking to take the next step in climbing. You must have previous experience of several days of top roping ice up to grade 4 (vertical ice). Participants must know how to tie in to a rope, belay and rappel. This course will be a 2:1 ratio on the ascent and will involve an actual multi-pitch ice climb. If you have your own equipment please bring this with you or gear will be provided if needed. 

(Limit 4 participants)