About Us

FAQs

Where do you meet?

The club meets weekly every Thursday from about 9pm in The Crossed Peels (Wetherspoons) in Stirling. We’re in the downstairs bar. Just ask at the bar if you can’t find us.

On the first Wednesday of each month (except July and August) there are slideshows and other activities at Stirling County Cricket Club. These usually start at 8:00 pm.

How do I get involved?

Come along one Wednesday or Thursday evening  (see above) and join in! There are places on club meets for prospective club members and you’ll also be able to find out what club members are doing on non-meet weekends that you can join in with. Don’t be afraid to ask!

Members may also post their weekend plans on WhatsApp or Facebook so be sure to check. Members participate in hillwalking and climbing in both summer and winter, indoor climbing, and ski-mountaineering. Some others are also hill-runners and mountain-bikers… and more.

What do I need for a day in the hills?

In summer, you’ll need waterproofs (including waterproof trousers), hiking boots, extra clothing, gloves, hat, plenty food/drink, map, compass and a rucksack to put it all in. It’s also a good idea to carry items such as a first aid kit, head torch, and survival bag in your rucksack. 

In winter when there is snow and ice, you’ll also need winter boots, crampons (that have been tested for fit with the boots), and a walking ice-axe. Things like extra clothing, head torch etc are essential for winter.

What do I need for weekend meets?

For weekend meets, information about the accommodation will be provided. You may need to bring a sleeping bag and possibly also a sleeping mat. As a rule, the accommodation is self catering, but being the OMC, there will generally be a pub nearby! Some people will choose to cook their own food while others will head to the pub. Cooking utensils are provided in the huts. We generally use huts/bunkhouses that we know to be of decent quality, reasonably priced, and in a good location.

Why is the club called the Ochils Mountaineering Club?

Stirling is situated right next to the Ochil Hills, so the club was named after the local hill range. Historically, this practice was adopted by many Scottish mountaineering clubs. The Ochils are ideally placed for spur-of-the-moment excursions into the hills when time does not allow for access to ranges further afield.

Can the OMC help me develop my skills?

Yes! If you want to learn more about skills such as mountain navigation, rope work in climbing, or use of crampons and axes, experienced members will usually be willing to pass on their knowledge to you informally in the course of a day’s walking or climbing. Remember to point out your shortcomings in these areas before you set out!

The OMC training committee organise more structured courses on request from members. In recent years for example we have provided courses in night navigation, selecting and constructing belays and anchors, abseiling, winter skills, and introduction to winter climbing.

The OMC also subsidises members who attend certain courses provided by professional external providers. For courses related to personal safety, such as winter skills or First Aid, the club may subsidise participants to up to 50% of the course fees. Members wishing to attend courses subsidised by the club must always apply before attending.

How formal is the club?

Although the club has a formal Constitution for the benefit and protection of the members, the atmosphere in the club itself is actually very informal. We enjoy regular meets indoors and outdoors. It’s the perfect way to meet other like minded folk who love the mountains!! We are also affiliated to Mountaineering Scotland.

Can I join in the climbing?

Of course! You don’t have to have climbed before in order to join in. In the summer, we climb outdoors midweek at crags such as Auchinstarry, Limekilns, Aberdour, Dunkeld and Cambusbarron. On longer summer evenings we may venture further afield. In the winter, we climb at various climbing walls, mainly The Peak in Stirling, but also Edinburgh International Climbing Centre (Ratho),  both branches of The Climbing Academy in Glasgow; Perth UHI Climbing Wall, and the Glasgow Climbing Centre, Ibrox (Glasgow). We occasionally visit other centres like Eden Rock, Edinburgh .

To join us on the indoor climbing wall, you will need:

  • Rock shoes
  • For roped climbing you will also need:
  • Harness
  • Belay device
  • Chalk bag (optional)

You can hire equipment at the wall if you wish to find out whether climbing is for you without the initial expense.

To join us outdoors you will also need a helmet and (optionally) a nut key.

We recommend that you use a real shop rather than an online retailer for the harness, helmet and rock shoes. Basically, these need to fit properly, and getting a decent fit will involve trying out several different harnesses/rock shoes etc. In Stirling, your only real option is Cotswold’s, although the selection of gear is limited. Get advice from the staff in the shop and do ask club members for advice as well. Cotswold offers a substantial discount to OMC members. Ask for details of current discount schemes.

What can I do for the club?

There are lots of ways you can help. For example:

  • You can organise a meet. The Meet Convenor will already have made the booking, but we always need volunteers to take names and payments. It’s easy and fun, and guidance is available.
  • You can participate in work weekends at the Club Cottage. Labourers and tradesmen are both in demand. The Hut Convenor will publicise these meets well in advance.
  • You can pass on any mountain skills which you possess to less experienced members. Whether or not you possess a recognised qualification, you can assist the Training Committee in their programme.
  • You can volunteer to join one of the Club’s committees. See “Contact Us” on the main page of this website.
  • You can stand for membership of the Club Management Committee. Without members willing to take on these roles, the Club cannot continue to offer the fantastic benefits to members that it has done over the years.

Whatever your level of experience, or whatever you think your talents are, volunteer! Get Involved, and give something back to the Club!