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Icicle bespoke day guiding 2023
We can provide day guiding in the UK, the Alps or further afield, as well as running our wide range of scheduled mountain courses. To meet our team of IFMGA & UIMLA guides, please click here. We were established in 2000, as a British fully bonded and licenced tour operator / guiding company, and have a full time office and equipment shop in Windermere in the UK Lake District.
Our main focus is on our scheduled one week long courses, but we do organise bespoke guiding packages of any duration from 1 day to a week or more.
All of the prices quoted are for guiding only, and don't include your cable cars, uplift, hire equipment, mountain huts / refuges, or any evening instruction.
If you stay in a mountain hut, you pay for yourself and the guide on a half board basis, and pay for all transport and the guides lift pass if required.
All bespoke bookings must be made and paid for a minimum 72 hours (3 days) before guiding. We accept no last minute bookings made within this timescale.
We offer bespoke guided days all year in the UK, and in the Alps when our scheduled courses are running, January to April, & June to September.
Bespoke bookings of 1 day are only available as a course extension, however bespoke bookings of 2 or more days are available to be booked independently online as they constitute a bespoke guiding package.
Sorry, we don't accept bespoke Alpine bookings outside our advertised seasons as we cannot provide you with the local logistical support you would normally expect to receive. UK bespoke bookings are year round.
If you agree to the conditions above and meet the criteria for bespoke guiding, then please get in contact, so that we can confirm availability and provide you with a final quotation for the day(s) bespoke guiding.
Prices for bespoke day guiding
The table below gives you an idea of the base rate of guiding tarrifs. Obviously for hard climbing or ski descents, the daily rate may be far more than the minimums listed, and a sliding scale of charges applies. For example an ascent of the North Face of the Matterhorn would cost at least £2500 for two days. Contact us by e-mail for an exact quote, and this remains valid for one week. The maximum guide ratio listed below is the total number of people that we allow a Guide to take for each activity. This is based on the safety advice of the IFMGA and UIMLA, and our imposed limits are to ensure that each member of the group has sufficient access to the guide, as well as for safety. Guiding prices do rise in key holiday weeks including Christmas, New Year or February half term, as well as in peak season when guides or instructors are in very short supply.
How to book private guiding
Contact us by e-mail, and we will either add the day(s) as extensions to an existing course booking of yours, or we upload the bespoke day(s) in your name onto our online booking system, so then you can book and pay securely online. You will then receive immediate e-confirmation and detailed equipment list to help you start packing, as well as a Course Information Booklet.
Guided climbs
Alpine: from £390
Scottish: £250+
Ice Climbing
Price: from £390
Ratio: up to 2per
Avalanche Day
Price: from £75pp
Ratio: up to 6per
Alpine Treks
Price: from £250
Ratio: up to 8per
Price: from £280
Ratio: up to 6per
Lake District
Price: from £140
Ratio: up to 8per
Off Piste Skiing
Price: from £390
Ratio: up to 6per
Ski Touring
Price: from £390
Ratio: up to 6per
Vallee Blanche
Price: from £390
Ratio: up to 6per

Personal trainer
Price: from £25/h
Ratio: up to 2per

Alpine Running
Price: from £250
Ratio: up to 6per

Fell Running
Price: from £150
Ratio: up to 6per

1) For all Alpine IFMGA guiding in Winter, the price is from £360 base rate for 1-4 per, and from £380 for 5-6 per.
2) Bespoke bookings of 3 or more days get a discount of £20 per day, from the Winter tarifs quoted above.
3) Note that for all prices quoted in the table above, these prices are 'from' prices (i.e. base rate), and depending on if they are for more technical objectives, or more remote locations, these prices will be increased.
Here are some of the most popular bespoke guiding options that we offer, based on two people sharing...
Crevasse Rescue
1 day @ £390/day
Cosmiques Arete
1 day @ £390/day
Petite Aig' Verte
1 day @ £3990/day
1 day @ £600/day
Crochues Ridge
1 day @ £390/day
Glacier Training
1 day @ £390/day
Cogne Icefalls
1 day @ £450/day
Navigation Skills
1 day @ £200/day
Mont Buet
1 day @ £280/day
VB Traverse
1 day @ £390/day
The length of day for private guiding is a function of the weather, conditions, your performance, cable car openings, and safety. For these reasons there is no such thing as a typical guided day. Some days are over by lunchtime, such as when an Alpine start was required, to climb before objective risks grew too high with the heat of the day (e.g. snowbridges getting weaker, rockfall increasing, avalanche risk evolving), when others are a lot more 9am-4pm. Some of the 'days' are nights, and others are specific routes that are done when they're done!

We ask you to bear this in mind when booking a 'day' of guiding, that the guide makes the decision as to when a day is a day. We don't charge for half days or hourly rates (apart from personal trainer up to 2 hours). Discounts may be applicable for multiple days booked together. The guide aims to provide value for money in the time you are with them. Above all, remember that the mountains are the mountains. If you are descending and the cable car is closed, you will have to ski / walk down, and might miss your dinner reservation. If the cable car closes and you can't go up again, that's it. If you can't accept any of these observations, don't book it...
Mont Blanc, Eiger & Matterhorn
For mountains of this stature, we consider that our week long courses are the best itineraries to allow for weather windows, acclimatisation, and summit success. We do NOT offer any tailor made alternatives for any of these peaks, as we are so sure our itineraries are correct. This isn't arrogance. It is a decision we have arrived at over a decade of running guided ascents of these peaks. We firmly believe that spending any less time than we offer on our scheduled courses is unsafe in terms of acclimatisation and your skills training. At best it will give you a very low chance of success, and at worst case it could be downright dangerous. Do not ask us for bespoke ascents of these peaks. We cannot assist.
Latest news from Icicle
Suggested reading and kit
To view the full course equipment list, with examples of kit, please click here.
Why choose our trips?
See our Alpine blog, by clicking on the Word-press logo to the right.
Icicle Blog
Itinerary flexibility to allow you to take full advantage of the weather windows on any day, to maximise your summit chances.
Our prices are fixed in £ Sterling, to protect you from euro fluctuations, so you can budget accurately.
There is a choice of routes to opt for, depending on the weather, conditions, and your experience.
Any further questions?
A key part of choosing a company is being able to come and talk about your plans with an experienced course advisor face to face. In an increasingly virtual world, we know our clients value speaking to real people, getting open and honest advice. The vast majority of our clients are British, and our office and outdoor store is based in Windermere in the English Lake District.

Get in contact to arrange a meeting, and come in for a coffee to discuss your course in person with a trip advisor. Many people opt for this service, and it is an integral part of what we offer, as we are keen to ensure that you are prepared as possible, and that you select a course that is suitable for you. It makes it easier and more enjoyable for you and us, if you are on the right trip.

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