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22

The loop allows the gloves to be hung, on a carabiner for example, such that the fingers point up preventing the gloves filling with rain or snow. For example, see the manufacturer's description of these gloves: Finger-mounted clip-in loop enables gloves to be attached to a carabiner with finger-tips facing up, eliminating snow-fill


13

If you don't have a compass or other instruments, it is possible to measure the slope with your two (ski) poles solely. Just hold/stick one pole vertically into the snow. Hold the other one horizontally until it reaches the slope with one end and the first pole with the other end. Now you check the height in which the poles contact each other. If it is at ...


12

In the US ice grades fall into three categories; Water Ice, which is seasonal and often shifting in difficulty; Alpine Ice, which is permenent ice found on glaciers or high altitudes; and Mixed Ice, which is a mix of ice and rock. Water Ice and Alpine Ice are on the same scale -- though alpine ice tends to be a little easier at the grade. (ratings taken via ...


12

There have been quite a few studies on this. There are various factors that will affect this, these include: Position in the snow: people upside-down sometimes live longer because the brain has more blood flow Equipment you may be carrying (aqualung, etc.) Injuries or bleeding: if you bang your head you could be dead before the avalanche even stops, etc. ...


10

Only 1 out of 10 survive Avalanches If you are completely buried in an avalanche the odds of survival are slim, unless you wear a transceiver (beacon), and you have partners that escaped the avalanche who have the right gear (beacon receivers, probes, and shovels) as well as the experience from practicing with them to save you. Statistics show that the ...


10

In general it really depends on the snow condition. Angle: If it's powder snow you need a quite steep angle (25 degrees and more). If it's icy/ hard/ wind slab snow then you can try it on a less steep (20 degrees) slope. Safety: I would search for a slope where you have a safe run off, if you can't manage do arrest yourself. And also that your runoff is ...


10

Yes. There's nothing wrong with melting snow and then purifying it with a standard water filter. Most of the water in mountain streams was snow at some point anyways. That being said, this is generally going to be a very inefficient way to make water, and if the temperature is below (or really anywhere near) freezing, you're going to be thirsty. I would ...


8

To put it simply, carry a compass with you that has a clinometer to measure a slope's angle, set one of your poles down on the slope and place the compass on top of the pole to get a solid reading. If you spend enough time in one area you'll start to become familiar enough with the terrain to remember roughly what the angles are and which routes are the ...


8

Traditional military routines for crossing a river under such conditions are the following Bag your pack and items in a waterproof sack/black bag Tie it up and use as a buoyancy aid Wear your normal boots and thin socks Ensure Gore-Tex socks are in your pack. They cost approx $10-14 Cross the river and accept the cold - embrace it :-) Once across remove ...


8

For winter walking a traditional straight-shafted mountaineering axe seems most appropriate. This would include products like the very common BD Raven or Raven Pro, and also those with a slight bend such as the Petzl Summit, Grivel Air Tech Evo, and BD Venom. As there are existing questions regarding length (How do I know what size ice axe I should get?), ...


8

I think it's quite similar to skiing because the reason for kick-and-glide is to save energy. Same for snowshoes; try not to elevate the whole weight of the shoe for every step. Of course in deep snow you have to lift the leg including the snowshoe quite high, but not as high as you'd have to not wearing snowshoes. Open the fixture at the back to make the ...


8

I have used them heaps for Rappelling, and am more comfortable using a Snow bollard than any other single anchor. I have seen snow stakes bend under the load of one person, ice screws pull the ice off the rock. I have seen deadmen fail when the knots came undone (might have been incorrectly clipped 'biner) (students on that course got a valuable knot tying ...


7

First of all, I will just spread some ideas. I never did a winter bivi by myself. Please don't blindly trust my words. But... because I am interested in the idea and like to do something similar in future, I searched for some info which might help you (and me). Still I am looking forward for better answers (which are based on experience and real ...


7

I can't speak for the Scottish winter and there definitely are differences to the Alps. But still I can give you an overview what is important to learn if you are going to do alpine summer tours in the Alps. The German Alpine Club (German: Deutscher Alpenverein, DAV) is the world's largest climbing association. The number of members is over one million. ...


7

Walking technique You can save energy by not lifting your shoe higher then needed. And also how long steps you take. If it's steep try to make smaller steps to save energy. If you walk with poles use your poles with the correct length and technique as with cross-country-skiing, both for every step, one per step or asymmetric. Path planing I think you can ...


7

Well, the primary difference is that once you've used your ice axe as an anchor, you can't use it to climb with. Also, two anchors is almost always better than one, especially in snow. You never know the exact strength of anchor in snow. While it is possible to improvise a deadman anchor in snow out of almost anything you can wrap a rope around, it's not ...


6

Bivying used to be regarded as a desperate act that you'd do in an emergency. In these circumstances a large polythene bag would serve as a make do shelter. Very cheap simple and pretty awful. In more recent years bivying has become more widespread in the outdoor adventure arena and purpose built kit is now available. A comfortable bivy is a fine art that ...


6

If you are roped up for glacier travel and the person in front of you has just fallen in then you can hammer a snow stake in to provide an anchor. Note that in this case you probably won't have your ice axe available since it will be stuck in the ground with your knee bracing it, holding up your mate. I've not seen the shorter stakes (the snow flukes) in ...


6

I'm not super experienced with snow anchors, but basically a snow bollard can be a bomber anchor if the snow is hard -- hard enough that you have to use an ice ax to chop the trench. You can back it up using one or more objects such as ice axes or pickets, to make it more difficult for the anchor to fail by having the rope cheese-grater itself through the ...


6

It depends on the filter. Many filters use microtubules. If there is water in the filter and the snow freezes that water then you may crack the microtubules. You'll likely have no indication that you just broke your filter, potentially leading to the consumption of contaminated water.


5

This isn't a complete answer, just an answer about the avalanche stuff, but it's too long to fit in a comment. Research shows that most avalanche training actually is not helpful in reducing people's chances of getting killed. It may even produce a negative effect on safety, because people get a false sense of competence. This is called the "expert halo." ...


5

Searching an ice axe for what I would call classical alpine terrain isn't that tough in my opinion. There might be fancy new features and very durable items (T-classification) but those might not be necessary for an ice axe typically used as a walking support. Most important for me is the correct length of the shaft so that you can actually reach the ground ...


5

If you are going to alpine area, your most important concern has to be security. Even with best equipment, knowledge about the dangers and how to avoid them is far more important. As you specifically asked for equipment, I will address these points. The only way I know of to spend a cold winter night comfortable is in some sort of a snow cave. There are ...


5

Two other answers have given methods for measuring this on-site. The trouble is that there's a lot of behavioral and sociological research showing that this doesn't really work. Once you get to the location where the activity is planned, you'll tend to go ahead anyway because you feel committed, and because there is a strong psychological need to show other ...


5

When to use it: An vapour barrier is used when the temperature is very cold and when a wet down-suit/sleeping bag, clothes or shoes can cause serious hypothermia. It's also used if you can't dry your stuff because of no sun, cold temperature or bad weather, so everything stays dry at least from the inside. Thinking behind this: When the isolation layers get ...


5

When you are facing a serious sweating problem, maybe your overall setup is too warm. What layers/jackets do you wear above the one-suite-fleece? I am thinking of a very thin layer which is highly breathable and will just be a shelter against the elements (wind, rain/snow) like e.g. the Gore Active Shell. Still, sweating to some degree is pretty normal. ...


5

Not Cotton Related: Does cotton really kill? Any active base layer will suffice as long as it is not cotton. Cotton is great for keeping you cool, but terrible for wicking moisture and keeping you warm. The classic "Union Suit" that your suit is modelled after was developed as, and is still worn by some as underwear, so you could use your suit as your ...


4

I thought about fishing boots. They would probably take the same space as an extra pair of pants and boots anyways, but they would save you from getting wet from freezing water and be a lot cheaper as well.


4

Unless the slopes gradually becomes less and less steep and you're sure there are no glaciers hidden under it, then the only way to safely practice that is to build a solid backup anchor on top of the practice slope and tie into it with a significant amount of rope slack. How to build the anchor is dependent on the terrain. There could be ice on top of the ...


4

Some pointers and questions Gloves: Layers are good. Have spares, as well as a set of mittens. Wool pants: How water resistant are they? The greatest potential for problems would be from precipitation in temperature ranges from 32F down +10F. You don't want frozen stuff melting into your trousers when cold. Sorels: Is that -40F for active or sedentary? ...



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