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Berg Adventures Mountain School Gear List

Top quality mountaineering clothing and equipment is an investment that will see you through years of adventures. It is wise to choose carefully, and not to skimp on quality. The companies and products you see listed below can serve as starting points of reference for you. Take this list to your local outdoor specialty shop.

Feel free to use this list as a reference as you prepare for your trip, but note that not all brands and models are current.


Stiff Soled Leather Mountaineering Boots: Leather boots are better for the summer than plastic boots. We will be moving on a variety of terrain and flexibility really helps. Cold feet are generally not a problem this time of year. When buying make sure you try them with the socks that you plan to wear and wear them around the house to make sure they are comfortable. (Kayland, La Sportiva, Scarpa)

Gaiters: Make sure they fit around your boots, such as Outdoor Research's Rocky Mountain Low Gaiters.

Lightweight Socks: They help to reduce blisters and should fit comfortably under your heavyweight socks, also known as liner socks. 2 pairs synthetic or synthetic/wool blend. (Ultimax, Smartwool, Patagonia)

Midweight or Heavy Socks: 3 pairs of synthetic/wool blend (Ultimax, Patagonia, Smartwool)

Booties: Down are synthetic with thick foam soles. These are an optional luxury.

Running shoes: Are optional, for using around campsite and in the hut in case you don’t take the booties. (make sure they’re light weight)


Lightweight Long Underwear Top: (Patagonia Capilene, REI)

Midweight Long Underwear Top: Zip-T neck design is good. Light colors are better for tops because they are cooler when hiking in direct sunlight and just as warm as dark colors when worn underneath other layers. (Patagonia Capilene, North Face, Mountain Hardwear)

Lightweight Long Underwear Bottoms: (Patagonia Capilene, REI)

Midweight Underwear Bottoms: Dark colors are preferable because they do not show dirt. (Patagonia Capilene, REI)

Fleece or Synthetic Fill Jacket: Mid to heavy weight, a full zip version is easier to put on. Fleece should be 200-300 weight. (North Face, Patagonia)

Briefs: 2-3 pairs synthetic or cotton. Running shorts also work well for underwear. We don’t recommend cotton but some people really prefer cotton underwear so we make an exception for this item even though synthetic would be better.

Short-Sleeved Shirt: 1 synthetic; most nylon running shirts or athletic shirts work. (The North Face, Patagonia)

Lightweight Long Sleeve Shirt with Collar: (Optional) Useful around the cabin and at lower elevations on the trip.

Rain/Snow Pants and Jacket: They have to be windproof and waterproof-breathable or highly water resistant. Look for long front and underarm zippers for the jacket and full side zippers on the pants. Jacket should have a hood. (Patagonia, The North Face)

Down Jacket: This is optional. A jacket with a hood recommended, we won’t use it for hiking but it can be very useful at camp or on rest breaks. It can also be useful to sleep as an extra insulating layer. A good alternative is a synthetic-insulated parka, but watch out for the weight. Remember, it should be large enough to be zipped up when wearing several layers underneath.

Head & Hand Gear

Lightweight Fleece or Wool Hat: You should be able to wear it under your helmet.

Balaclava: lightweight model

Sun Hat: “Baseball” style hat with good visor

Bandanas: 2 or 3 worn under the hat and across face for additional sun protection.

Sunglasses: 100%UV with dark lenses designed for high altitude use. Should have a shape that offers minimum light to enter from side. “Glacier glasses” with side shields are one good option, otherwise make sure the lens is large and shaped to fit your face well. Days are long and the sunlight is intense on glaciers at altitude. Bring a spare pair for emergencies. If you wear contacts, bring a back up pair of prescriptions sunglasses or dark “clip-ons” to protect your eyes while wearing glasses. Prescription glacier glasses are available.

Ski goggles: They make life great in storms when your up high. (Bolle, Oakley)

Gloves: 2 pairs with fleece liners and a waterproof outer shell. One pair can be “Windstopper” Fleece. (Outdoor Research, Black Diamond)

Climbing Equipment

Ice Axe: General mountaineering axe, mountaineering “walking” length, 60-80cm in length, depending on your height. Shaft should be straight without a protruding rubber grip. You will need a leash to attach the axe to you harness NOT a “wrist loop”. Bring a commercial leash designed for glacier travel or 6 ft of 1 inch webbing and your guide will help you construct one. (Grivel, Black Diamond)

Crampons: We recommend the 12 point step in type which can be easily adjusted and used for glacial travel. (Grivel, Black Diamond)

Harness: Alpine style, you should not have to step through leg loops to put it on and off, lightweight and fully adjustable. (Petzl, Black Diamond)

2 Locking Carabiners: 1 large locking “pear” shaped and 1 regular locking carabiner. (Black Diamond, Petzl, Clog)

Perlon Cord: 40 feet of 6mm perlon cord, also known as static accessory cord. (do not cut it, bring in one piece)

Ski or Trekking Poles: Adjustable poles are better, especially for strapping to your harness when not using them. (Leki, Black Diamond)

Climbing Helmet: Must be adjustable to wear with or without a hat. (Petzl, Black Diamond)

Camping Gear / Personal Equipment

Backpack: Internal Frame 4500 to 5500 cubic inches or 75-90 liters. (ArcTeryx, North Face, Grivel)

Day Backpack: 35 to 40 liter day pack (Black Diamond, North Face)

Sleeping Bag: Recommended 0F (-10C) rating or warmer. Down is more efficient and less bulky, but high quality synthetic bags are also acceptable. A compression stuff sack is recommended. (North Face, Mountain Hardwear)

Swiss Army Knife: Make sure you check it in at the airport and not have it on your carry on.

Insect Repellent

Compass: With sighting mirror and declination adjustor.

Headlamp: Bring extra Batteries. Lightweight models are better.

Water Bottles: Two 1 liter wide mouth (Nalgene)

Camera with Film or digital cards

Small Notebook with Pen/Pencil

Zip lock bags

Stuff sacks: 2-3 (assorted sizes) They always comes in handy.

Travel Items

Extra casual travel clothes and toiletries: As needed depending on the length of your trip and your schedule.

Duffel Bag: Large size with lock. Airlines do not like to check backpacks. You will use the duffel to store items in our office while you are in the mountains.