Course Comments

2017

Hillwalking T1 / T2 Permit Training

The course was excellent. We practiced navigation day/night in small groups so each member could practice their skills under the watchful eye of the very knowledgeable and approachable Instructors. We practiced and then fine tuned, then practiced again. Each time taking something away.
Everyone was friendly and helpful, each sharing their stories and experience which benefited everyone. The facilities were spot on all you need for this type of adventure, although the drying room was struggling! The volunteer chef was excellent, preparing breakfast and an excellent curry in the evening.
The course is designed to hone your map reading skills, not just plod on a track for 20km. I would recommend this to anyone who thinks they can map read, or those who want to learn more. Now where was I, 34, 35, 36 …….

How we might improve our courses? Practical exercise in taking a triangulation of our position to see how accurate it is.

Peter Haase


Winter Week 2017

The instructors were very professional, full of insights for both novice and more experienced mountaineers.
At times other, more enjoyable aspects were highlighted, such as photography, nature and the thrill of going up a mountain in winter. It wasn’t all just safety and map reading.
Other than that, all of the members I met were incredibly friendly and knowledgable; I didn’t feel at all like an outsider, even though I had joined a group of people who have been mountaineering for the best part of 15 years.

Joe Weston


Winter Week 2017

Really friendly group atmosphere. Very experienced leaders. Amazing food. Great variety of routes.

Constructive suggestions on how we might improve our courses? Make it clearer what routes are available for each walking day.

Name withheld at senders request


Winter Week 2017

My second Winter Skills week with HSMT and even better that the last!

Very friendly and relaxed atmosphere at the luxurious Fassfern House especially the women’s quarters with en suite bathroom. And I never had any problems getting the water to run hot!

Food was fantastic with the talented Mark producing restaurant quality food each evening and Lawrence ensuring a varied, delicious and plentiful breakfast was offered every day.

Now the actually walking – I’m still very much finding my feet in winter conditions and although going up isn’t too hard I do have a tendency to panic on steep descents, however Owen, Steve and Mark were brilliant at cajoling and reassuring me and the rest of my teammates were very patient whilst I acted like a complete wuss a couple of times.

The leaders all showed great professionalism and coped well with the different levels of skills and fitness of the group and I didn’t feel either pressurised nor out of my depth at any time.

The only formal “entertainment” was the now legendary Burns Night with David performing a full address to the Haggis and Cogy producing an amusing and spontaneous Toast to the Lassies. I was very happy with just one evening of formal entertainment as by the end of the day we were all fairly tired and it was nice just to be able to wind down with a game of pool and a glass of wine.

If you’re thinking of doing a winter skills week I would definitely recommend HSMT – great fun and very welcoming. I’ll be back if you’ll have me.

Lizzy Cod

2015

Adventurous Activities Permit Assessment 2015

What I enjoyed about the course is the professionalism and wealth of experience of the assessors and other staff.
Well planned and executed course with a flexible and personal approach. Meeting other participants.

Name withheld at senders request


2014

Winter Week 2014

I really enjoyed this year and the suggestions below are just suggestions for years to come. I realise that this year was different due to the 10th anniversary but it would be good to get more novices on the course. I would also suggest that novices are only allowed to attend if they have been on one of the Spring or Autumn weekends so that they can be assessed for suitability both in terms of aptitude and fitness for what are full-on walks in probably the most hostile environments they will encounter. It would be good to have an overall objective for the course to steer what is discussed on the hills and back at the base. I realise that there MUST be a period of refreshing winter mountaineering skills such as; Ice Axe Arrest, avalanche risk assessment, etc but something along the lines of “What to do if you are be-nighted” or “Advanced use of the ice axe – ice climbing/gully ascents” or “Winter Mountaineering rope skills”, etc is what I am suggesting.
Enjoyed the relaxed and very friendly atmosphere. The focus on getting out and doing stuff rather than the “classroom” knowledge acquisition. The two evening events with the “History of Cairngorm climbing” and the Braemar MRT visit were excellent – be good to talk to the MWIS or SAIS team next time if possible.

Barry Moses

Reply from HSMT: Barry your points will be reviewed going forward by the team and thanks for the valued feedback.


Winter Week 2014

Retain the ‘formal’ Burn’s night. It’s always the mix of people that make the these courses enjoyable. The weather, although not brilliant, enabled us to be on the hills every day. Evening entertainment such as The History of Scottish Mountaineering, Braemar Mountain Rescue and the legendary Burn’s Night were all great. What can I say about the accommodation and food except it was right and fitting for the anniversary.

John Leeks


Winter Week 2014

The course exceeded my expectations and personal aims for the week. Relaxed professionalism of the course leaders. Enthusiasm of all day walk leaders to openly share their knowledge of how to enjoy and respect the Scottish mountains safely. Our visit to the Braemar Mountain Rescue Centre an excellent idea. Burns Night celebrations great fun. Overall, a lot of hard work goes on before the event to make the week run as smoothly as this one did. Thank you All.

Andy Gee


Adventurous Activities Permit Training 2014

Mention that a towel is needed as well as a sleeping bag. The Bethesda accom. was not as nice as Deiniolen and was not very clean. Only 5 of us there so maybe the weekend chosen (St Georges day and v near Easter) wasn’t the best.
Top class instruction from David Adamson in wonderful surroundings.
Also learnt a lot from Pete Burke and Richard Hurrell. Good to spend time with such like minded and knowledgeable individuals!

Bernard Stebbing

Reply from HSMT: The date choice definitely left us short this time.