No other ridge in the United Kingdom offers more exposed and continuous scrambling than the Skye Cuillin Ridge. Boasting over 12km and 3500m+ of ascent and descent, it deserves a title as one of the best Alpine ridgelines in Europe. Linking all the summits along its jaggy crest in one push should not be underestimated; the rock is loose and incredibly exposed in places. Many aspirants will have heard about the harder sections of the ridge that are tackled along the way – the TD Gap, Kings Chimney & Naismith’s Route all rock climbs in their own right. Attempting this substantial challenge really is an amazing experience, with the aid of your Skye Mountain Guide we aim to make it as safe and enjoyable as possible. Vertical Fever will provide you with a qualified Skye Mountain Guide who is not only professionally certified to operate in this challenging environment, but will inspire you with geological and historical knowledge of the peaks you are climbing.
How it Works
A traverse typically takes two days but by booking three or even four days guiding the chance of success rises as this allows some flexibility for the best weather window. If for any reason the weather does not allow an attempt, individual guiding days will be offered along with a partial refund. Any spare days will either be used to stash bivi equipment, practice technical skills or go rock climbing at the end of your stay.
Single day traverses are only available to very fit parties, more than likely you will be known to Vertical Fever and have completed previous scrambles and climbs with us in the Cuillin Mountains. It is still a requirement to book a minimum of two days with one of our Skye Mountain Guides to allow for the best weather window for a single day Skye Cuillin Ridge Traverse.
I have done a couple of trips with Steve now. Last year was a weeks scrambling in Glen Coe culminating in ascending the north face of Ben Nevis. Earlier this year we did a 2 day traverse of the Black Cuillins in Skye. Both trips were amazing experiences that took me beyond what I thought I could do –
I. Preece, Cuillin Ridge Traverse
|Number of people||2 day Traverse||3 days inc 2 day
|4 days inc 2 day
|BOOK / ENQUIRE|
|1 or 2||600||800||1000||CLICK HERE|
The day ahead
To attempt a traverse of the main Cuillin Ridge you have to be prepared for big days. Expect each day to last anywhere from 9 – 13 hours. Just getting to the start of the ridge requires an ascent of 895m over rough and pathless terrain, something which your body needs to be accustomed too. The ridge itself is a labyrinth of complex ridges and paths that lead to nowhere, it is for this reason you have employed us! Your Skye Mountain Guide will not only be technically sound but have great knowledge of the ridge enabling them to pick the best route to suit your aspirations and the prevailing conditions.
Notorious climbs along the ridge such as the TD Gap, Kings Chimney & Naismith’s Route lead directly to some of the main summits. These particular climbs will only be tackled in good conditions and will be at the discretion of your guide as to whether they believe it is suitable for you to attempt them. Every effort will be made to be as direct along the traverse as possible; we are after all at the mercy of the weather and your abilities.
As a guided ascent you will be provided with harness and helmets for the day free of charge. Overnight evening meal and breakfast is also supplied for the mountain top bivi. Please download the Skye Traverse Kit List
This ambitious challenge is a truly amazing achievement for the successful mountaineer, but it should not be your first foray into these mountains unless you have substantial Alpine or UK mountaineering experience. A high degree of cardio fitness, above average upper body strength and great core stability is imperative to a successful Cuillin Ridge Traverse. Confidence and competence also play a huge factor in the outcome of any attempt; it is why we believe previous experience travelling over technical terrain is so important.
The mountains of Skye are unique to the UK, if you have any reservations as to what we believe is ‘suitable experience’ please to get in contact for advice prior to booking.
Lower ratios enhance the chance of success, with this in mind we work on a 1 guide to every 2 clients, for larger groups additional guides can be provided at a premium that reflects this. Please get in contact to discuss options for larger groups.
Meeting and timings
It is recommended that you arrive on Skye the evening before your course start date. Depending on the prevailing weather forecast your guide may wish to meet and discuss a plan to make sure everything is in place for your attempt. Expect to hear from your guide approximately one week prior to start date.