Terra Firma Training

Hill Skills

A One Day Introductory Navigation Course

Gain confidence out in the Irish hills. 


On this one day introduction to navigation course, you will learn the basic skills needed to explore the mountains safely. It will help you to recognise topographical features and translate them to the map and transfer the information on the map to the landscape. You will learn how to take a compass bearing and plan your route in the mountains. There will be a session in the classroom, before heading out to the hills to practice the skills learnt.


Hill Skills course content includes: 

  • Map reading skills 

  • Feature recognition

  • Navigation & relocation techniques 

  • Compass introduction

Get in touch for more information

For those wishing to learn basic hill skills, we can tailor introductory navigation courses for groups of 6-12.  

Mountain Skills

Approved by Mountaineering Ireland - 2 day courses in Mountain Safety and Navigation

We provide Mountain Skills 1 & 2 courses approved by Mountaineering Ireland. These two day personal proficiency courses will give you all you need to go hiking in confidence and to start the journey towards your Mountain Skills Assessment:


Mountain Skills 1 Course content includes: 

  • Map reading skills 

  • Feature recognition

  • Navigation & relocation techniques 

  • Personal Equipment

  • Mountain Hazards

  • Introductory Leave No Trace

Mountain Skills 2 Course Content includes:

(building from Mountain Skills 1)

  • Developing MS1 skills learned

  • Compass Navigation

  • Navigating at night and poor visibility 

  • Movement over steep & broken ground

  • Emergency procedures

  • The Mountain Environment

For those wishing to learn basic hill skills, we can tailor introductory navigation courses for groups of 6-12.  

Leave No Trace

Awareness Course / Train the Trainer Course

Customised Leave No Trace courses for community groups such as Tidy Towns, event organisers, schools, scout leaders, clubs and businesses.  


Leave No Trace is an outdoor ethics programme designed to promote and inspire responsible outdoor recreation through education, research and partnerships.

Course content is tailored to client needs -  covers the seven principles of Leave No Trace in a fun environment and includes outdoor activities.

Certified Awareness courses require a one day course in Leave No Trace.

Trainer Courses are 2 day (including overnight camp) in outdoor ethics and allow the certified trainer to deliver a certified Awareness Course in Leave No Trace. 

All our Trainers hold the Advanced Trainer Qualification in Leave No Trace

Heritage In Schools

Dark Sky Ranger Programme

Being immersed in nature has numerous widely documented health, cognitive and personal development benefits for kids and this is fundamental to our approach, but we only talk about the fun! You’ll notice the other bits!

Our school visits blend the history of navigation and science of astronomy into fun activities covering curriculum and programme themes including: 

  • Dark Sky Rangers – practical activities using sensory learning and observation to develop night vision, track nocturnal wildlife and encourage less screen time.   

  • Night Sky Safari and Stargazing Sesssions – Learn how to map the sky, using art to create and name a constellation and tell mythical stories of the sky

  • Navigation and Orienteering Courses – place based learning using nature for natural navigation as well as technical compass skills and map making. 

Robert Lloyd Praeger Experience

Unplug your devices and recharge your batteries on a Wilderness Detox course

Would you like a weekend of wilderness to detox the mind and body? We are launching the Robert Lloyd Praeger Experience in Wild Nephin Wilderness. Featuring a night under the stars, introductory training in camp craft, navigation techniques, stargazing, environmental studies and a hiking in Ireland's most remote landscape and International Dark Sky Park.


Famous Irish naturalist/botanist Robert Lloyd Praeger, opened up curiosity and provided education into some of Ireland’s wildest and most remote areas, particularly in Mayo. His book “The Way that I Went” is an account of his journey throughout the island of Ireland and he described the Nephin region as remote yet "inspiriting".


This book was published in the 1930’s and some of the skills Praeger would have used have been forgotten, as our connection to the environment has dwindled. We believe a lot of these skills and techniques are just as relevant today, are transferrable to the workplace and also to everyday life.


Starting Friday night ..finishing Sunday evening


The weekend will include:

Introductory navigation techniques & remote procedures

Basic intro to stargazing & skylore

Environmental & Cultural landscape session

Hiking in Wild Nephin

Wellbeing and mindfulness

Certified Leave No Trace Awareness Course

Transfer from Westport Train Station

1 night accommodation (Friday night for course briefing) & b/fast

1 night camping accommodation (tent provided - own mat & sleep bag required).

Pls note own food for cooking at camp required.

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Terra Firma Ireland is a member of Irelands Association for Adventure Tourism

With thanks to Steven Hanley & Brian Wilson for astrophotography shots 

info@terrafirmaireland.comTel: +353 89 240 9015 | Newport, County Mayo, Ireland

Registered business name: Terra Firma Ireland

Terra Firma has completed its safety charter and is Covid 19 compliant with government regulationsa
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