Basic Mountaineering Course


The Basic Mountaineering Course is offered by Central Washington Mountain Rescue (CWMR) through Yakima Valley Community College as community service.

This is a non-credit course introducing the beginning climber to basic mountaineering skills. Students will learn about climbing and safety equipment, risk and hazard evaluation, and physiological needs of the climber. Basic through easy Class 5 rock climbing and how to set up a top rope system will be covered. Safe methods of snow travel, glacier travel, and crevasse rescue techniques will also be discussed.

Prerequisite: Minimum age is 18, general physical fitness that includes the ability to carry a pack 2 miles uphill over uneven, rocky, and snowy terrain.
Other expectations: Personal gear such as pack and appropriate clothing for the mountain environment, transportation to field sessions, completing required readings, and active participation in class and field sessions.

Primary text book: Mountaineering: Freedom of the Hills, 8th Edition, by the Mountaineers and Ronald C. Eng. Once registration is confirmed, a copy of the textbook must be secured for the length of the course as there are required reading assignments each week.

Registration for the 2017 class opens Wednesday, March 22, 2017 is open now and goes through Wednesday, March 29, 2017. You must go to YVCC in person to register. You cannot register online unless you are already a YVCC student currently enrolled in classes.

Note: YVCC charges a $15 registration fee.
Mandatory meeting times for the class include:
  • Every Monday from April 17 through May 22 at YVCC from 7:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
  • Thursdays, May 11 and May 18 at Franklin Park from 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
  • Ice Axe and Snow Travel field session on Saturday, May 13 at White Pass from 8 a.m. until completed
  • Rock session on either Saturday, June 3 or Sunday, June 4 (choose one) - location to be determined - from 8 a.m. until completed
  • Glacier Travel Field Day on Saturday, June 24 and possibly Sunday, June 25 - location to be determined depending on available access to glaciers - 7 a.m. until completed
Participants shall pay a fee to recover the cost of maintaining the course and instructional equipment. After registration is confirmed by YVCC, choose the correct option below to remit the fee to CWMR through PayPal. If paying before the first day of class the amount is $175; after that the amount is $200. Anyone who has not completed the registration and cost recovery process by the first night of class will de dropped from the roster and the next person on the wait list will be given an opportunity to participate in the class.
To pay the fee, choose the correct option:

For a complete syllabus and additional information, you may write to Central Washington Mountain Rescue, P.O. Box 2663, Yakima, Washington 98907 or preferably contact us via .
Email:



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