Grading

Our trips require different levels of fitness and experience but many can be done by fit and adventurous people with little or no trekking experience. The most essential pre-requisite is that you are fit, healthy and that you have the right mental attitude. As a reference, you can assume that any climb over 5000m needs a high standard of fitness and any climb over 6000m is particularly demanding.

We use a two-tiered grading system to give you an overall level of technical difficulty and fitness required for our trekking and mountaineering trips. A number will indicate the technical difficulty of the trip and a letter will indicate the level of fitness required.

Technical Difficulty

GradeDescription
1Hiking or scrambling using established hiking routes. Ropes are not usually required. Previous climbing & trekking experience are not essential.
2Hiking or scrambling using established hiking routes that may include moderate to steep rock scrambles or scree and snow. No previous experience of climbing is required but previous experience with trekking is desirable.
3Ropes may be used principally for glacier travel, low angle snow or short section of ice slopes up to 50degrees. Previous climbing experience with used of crampon and ice axe are desirable but not essential.
4Long, steep snow and ice slopes with short steps of very steep scrambling on rocks. Previous climbing experience with used of crampon and ice axe, rope-up, self-arrest techniques is essential.
5Very steep ice or rock. Suitable for competent mountaineers who have climbed consistently at these standards.

Fitness Requirement

LevelDescription
AA moderate fitness base is required. You should be able to hike to the summit of Bukit Timah Hill with no undue difficulty carrying a daypack average weight between 3kg and 5kg.
BGood basic fitness is essential. You may hike at this level for up to a week with no undue difficulty carrying a daypack average weight between 6kg and 10kg. In this grade, you are able to walk up a 40-storey block in less than 13mins with a 6kg daypack load, and can repeat at least 4-6 times in a single session. You may also be hiking at an elevation between 1,000m and 4,000m.
CGood cardio-vascular fitness which most people requiring some training by running, hiking and perhaps some gym work. You will be engaged in multi day trips and/or hiking at altitude. You should be able to hike for a week with no undue difficulty. In this grade you will normally have porterage assistance. You may carry a day-pack (avg beween 5kg and 10kg) for up to 6-15 days. You may also be hiking or climbing up to around 6,000m and the routes will entail days of up to 8 hours requiring some degree of determination.
DA high level of all round fitness will be required, coupled with physical toughness. Some of the peaks may require you to carry a heavy backpack for long periods. Climbs of this grade are exceptionally strenuous. Average backpack weighs between 6kg and 10kg; some peaks may require load ferrying up to 12kg or more.
EA resistance to extreme weather conditions over extended periods of time. Hard physical effort at extreme altitude which requires thorough preparation based on your experience of previous trips. Comments for 'D' also apply. At this grade you may also be on treks of climbing peaks which entail long days of up to 14+ hours requiring a serious degree of determination. You may also be climbing at altitudes of over 6,000 meters for multiple days.