International Mountain Leader Award (IMLA)

Carpathian Mountains of Romania

The International Mountain Leader Award provides comprehensive training and assessment for individuals who aspire to work as mountain leaders outside of South Africa and Lesotho.
The Award provides training and assessment in the skills required for leading and educating groups worldwide in summer conditions and on easy snow covered, “middle mountains” in winter conditions.

Entry requirements:

  • Candidates must have successfully completed the Mountain Leader Award
  • A minimum of 20 quality summer mountain days must be recorded in a log book
  • A minimum of 20 quality winter mountain days must be recorded with at least 10 being outside of South Africa and Lesotho
  • A suitably independent referee must endorse a candidate’s log book.

Summer training:

Minimum course length is 5 days. Winter training: Minimum course length is 5 days.

Summer assessment:

Summer assessment is a minimum of 4 days and must take place outside of South Africa. Before assessment can be undertaken the following criteria must be met:
  • Candidates must hold a current First Aid certificate (minimum Level II)
  • Candidates must have passed the speed navigation test
  • Candidates must demonstrate further experience gained since summer training

Winter assessment:

The International Mountain Leader Winter assessment is 5 days long and is based outside of South Africa and Lesotho. The following criteria must be met before IML Winter assessment can be attempted:
  • Candidates must have completed IML Summer assessment
  • Candidates must hold a Level II First Aid certificate
  • The candidate’s log book must reflect a minimum of 30 quality international mountain days, and at least 30 quality winter days. At least 10 of the winter days must be outside of South Africa and Lesotho.

Syllabus:

  • The mountain environment
  • An overview of the legal and economic situation in which IML award holders work
  • Group management and the responsibilities of the leader
  • Teaching techniques
  • Anatomy and physiology
  • Physical ability and fitness
  • Advanced navigation
  • Weather and climate
  • Security in mountainous terrain
  • Bivouac and survival skills
  • Expedition management
  • Snow-covered terrain
  • Emergency procedures
  • MDT and NQF training and qualification structure and skills

Scope of the Award:

The Award provides training and assessment in the skills required for leading and educating groups worldwide in summer conditions and also on easy snow covered, rolling, Nordic type terrain in the “middle mountains” in winter conditions. The scheme does not involve the techniques and equipment of alpinism or glacial travel.