Mountaineering Basics

Mountaineering Basics
Mountaineering is an exciting sport to get into, but there are many variations on the actual act. In the literal since any time a person climbs a mountain, it is mountaineering. This would include that gentle sloping mountain that even has a few trails to follow all the way to the other extreme of using ice picks and rope to climb a different mountain. The amount of work and effort that a person is willing to put into mountaineering will greatly affect the experience.

Equipment

The climbing equipment needed will depend on the type of mountain being hiked. For instance, a mountain covered with trees and underbrush with hardly any exposed rock will not require much equipment at all. A backpack with basic survival gear, such as food, water, a fire starter and first aid kit, will probably be enough if the mountain isn't very tall. Camping items might be needed if the person feels it might take longer, and the proper hiking boots a must. For rockier mountains, rock climbing equipment will need to be added to the pack, and for areas that might have ice, ice picks and spiked soles will be needed as well.

Rules

Before attempting more than a mild climb, a climber should make sure that he is physically fit to undertake the activity. No one should ever climb alone, and friends or relatives should be informed of the event, so that the climber will be missed if he does not make it back. The area being climbed should always be researched before starting and weather reports should also be looked over. Equipment should be inspected for wear and tear, and should be replaced if any is discovered.

Considerations

If the climb becomes difficult, it is important to remember that you have to climb down as far as you go up. A person should not go past his limits. Also,before leaving, decide among the hikers, who will be the leader. There should always only be one. If too many people think they are in charge, it increases tension and confusion, and that is when errors in judgment happen. Checking the weather just through the date of the hike is not enough. It should be checked several days past. This will ensure that proper gear is packed because there is always the possibility that the hike could take longer than expected.

Article Written By Tara Dooley

Tara Dooley has written for various websites since 2008. She has worked as an accountant, after-school director and retail manager in various locations. Dooley holds a Bachelor of Science in business management and finance.

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