Rambling & Hiking
Whether you're a seasoned mountaineer or a fledgling hiker, Ramsoc has something to offer you in terms of training - and everyone is welcome. We run a variety of courses, from a basic introduction to navigation, through to preparing you to become a certified Mountain Leader. Our training courses are aimed at helping you gain knowledge of and confidence with navigation and group management. After completing training, if you can demonstrate your skills over a series of walks, you can become one of our official leaders! Our walk leaders are essential for the running of the club, and help us run exciting activities year after year.
- Part 1: Intro to Navigation
- Part 2: Leadership and Advanced Navigation
- Part 3: Mountaineering Skills
- First Aid
- Minibus Driver test
Part 1: Intro to Navigation
Intro to Navigation covers the main aspects of how to navigate whilst out on the hills. The session is run at several points throughout the year. Training coincides with our regular Sunday walks so that training can take place on the hills, enabling practice to begin straight away. Once completed, Part 1 will enable you to act as a navigator whilst on Level 1 walks`*. A navigator must always have a fully trained leader present on a walk too to give aid if needed.
Part 2: Leadership and Advanced Navigation
Part 2 of training comprises of both a theory session and a practical day. It focuses on aspects of leadership, including group management, safety and what to do in an emergency, and factors of advanced navigation which are not covered in Part 1. On the practical day, we take a minibus to Kinder Scout, the highest point in the Peak District, and split into small groups for intensive coaching and practice on the hills. Ramsoc leaders always aim for their walks to arrive back on the bus before sunset, but very occasionally, if there has been an issue, you may find yourself having to navigate in the dark. So, in a simulation of these circumstances, when it begins to get dark, we begin our descent so that you can experience what it is like to have to walk and navigate with head torches. Finally we finish with a good meal in the pub to reward your hard work! Once completed, Part 2 allows you to lead on any Level 1 walks*.
Part 3: Mountaineering Skills
The climax of the Ramsoc training program takes place over the Easter holidays when we take a group of keen leaders to Snowdonia for a full four days of walking, micro-navigation, scrambling, navigation (day and night), rope work training and a visit to a Mountain Rescue Centre. This course is largely based on the Mountain Leader Training scheme so is a good foundation for anyone interested in progressing to that stage. It is a necessary requirement to have taken Part 2 before doing Part 3, but on completion of Part 3 you may lead any Level 2 walks**, which includes any walks (and scrambles!) on our weekends away.
*Level 1 walks - generally do not go higher than 636m (the hightest point in the Peak District). They mainly include our Sunday walks, plus some on weekends away. **Level 2 walks - go to higher altitudes, may be further from civilisation and have worse weather conditions. They mainly include walks on weekends away to areas such as Snowdonia and the Lake District.
Ramsoc requires a trained first aider to be on every walk. First aid training is heavily subsidised by the SU and the club and involves two days of training on campus. It covers everything from bandaging wounds to learning how and when to give CPR. Training is normally held in the last few weeks of the year, after the summer exams. You'll receive an official certificate which can be used outside of the club as well (it looks great on the CV.)
Minibus Driver Test
Ramsoc relies heavily on minibus drivers to help run several of our events such as the Dark Peak Marathon, night hike and occasionally weekends away. We'll struggle to make these events happen if we can't get enough drivers, so we provide a minibus training course that's open to anyone over the age of 21 that has held a driving license for at least 3 years. The course is heavily subsidised by the SU and the club, and anyone who drives for an event will get a discount off the price as a thank you. The course is run by the university and is available to be taken at several dates throughout the year.
If you have any questions about any of the training events or the minibus driver test, please email firstname.lastname@example.org