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Questions tagged [high-altitude]

Questions referring to everything related to mountaineering in higher altitudes (generally 10.000ft+/3000m+) like concerns about your health because of the thin air.

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18
votes
2answers
7k views

For how long afterwards do we benefit from acclimatization?

Consider we are trying to pre-acclimate for an expedition in Himalaya to shorten the actual timespan on site. As an example, I am expecting a benefit if I go in the Alps for several days above 4000m ...
5
votes
1answer
160 views

Climbing Mt. Kazbek - Hiring a Guide from the Meteo Station

I am planning to climb Mt. Kazbek, from the Georgian side, in August, but I am not really keen on the idea of booking a whole package all the way from Kazbegi. I've read elsewhere that you can hike to ...
8
votes
4answers
609 views

Is there really no way to rescue a climber from the death zone?

I have watched many documentaries about accidents on Everest and what I learned is, that it is impossible to rescue anybody from the death zone. It is simply too hard for the sherpas, or anybody else ...
13
votes
3answers
945 views

Is there any evidence that the small canisters (10 liters) of 95% oxygen actually help with altitude sickness?

In Colorado outdoor stores its not uncommon to see these small canisters of 95% percent oxygen that's sold to help people cope with high altitude. Is there any evidence that these actually help with ...
5
votes
0answers
135 views

Is there evidence to support or refute the hypothesis that frequent trips to high altitude aid acclimatization?

Many years ago, I was reading a book in which the Chamonix guides of the 1940s and 1950s were featured. It could have possibly been Annapurna by Maurice Herzog, but I just don't remember. Several ...
10
votes
4answers
673 views

Does body need to re-acclimatize after a few days out of altitude?

We will be in Peru visiting Machu Pichu (altitude 7,972 ft or 2,430 m). Then we'll go down to the jungle (essentially sea level) for 4 days and then to Cuzco (altitude 11,152 feet or 3,399 meters). ...
9
votes
2answers
248 views

What is the impact/risks of high altitude walking on individuals suffering from High Blood Pressure?

Setting aside the benefits of cardiocavascular exercise in general, what are the risks to hikers/climbers with high blood pressure at various altitudes? Is there an upper ceilling/threshold that ...
9
votes
1answer
117 views

Is there any measurable effect on acclimatization rate for people living in middle mountains?

Do people living in middle mountains (500-1000 m.asl) have any measurable advantage against lowlanders when it comes to acclimatization? Are there measurable differences in blood cells density? I'...
19
votes
6answers
862 views

What are some proven methods of training for week long backpacking trips at high altitude?

I'm going to Colorado to visit a friend and we will be going on a week long trek across a couple of 14'ners. I'm looking for some ways to help prepare my body for trip.
6
votes
2answers
226 views

Is altitude tent helpful in preparation for climbing 7000-8000m mountains?

Climbing extremely high mountains requires a long time (weeks together) to acclimatisation to the altitude. Is it possible to reduce this time by adding sleeping in Altitude tent to the preparation ...
10
votes
4answers
4k views

Can I use ear plugs while ascending or descending a mountain?

Can I use ear plugs to block out noise or will my ears need to pop because of the altitude? I don’t want to get sick by using the ear plugs.
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Suitable Food for moderate to High altitude trekking

I am preparing for an expedition which is going to be in Mid-July next year. I am quite aware about the level of physical fitness that we require for such a trek, and I am preparing for it as well. ...
11
votes
9answers
3k views

Climbing Mount Teide from sea-level

Is it possible to climb Mount Teide from sea-level in 2 days for a reasonably fit person? Essentially, I was thinking of walking up to the Altavista mountain refuge on the first day (can that be done ...
2
votes
3answers
209 views

What are the possible risks of exercising at high altitudes?

Are there any possible risks of exercising (body weight, calisthenics only) at high altitudes? I'm talking of altitudes above 4500m. The whole premise is not to lose muscle mass. Background: I'll be ...
15
votes
2answers
3k views

Is it normal for a compass to develop an air bubble at high altitude?

I live in Denver, Colorado. Going above 10,000 ft. (3,000 metre) always results in an air bubble large enough for me to want to tilt the compass to prevent the bubble from interfering with the needle....
24
votes
3answers
446 views

A little bit of acclimatisation or no acclimatisation at all?

This summer I'm planning to mount my first 4000 m mountain in Switzerland. So far I only got around 3300 meters while hiking and had no problems. However 4000 meter an above is definitively a ...
8
votes
1answer
177 views

Is acute mountain sickness repeatable?

Several month ago me and my climbing partner were climbing a mountain over 7000m. In first few day my climbing partner got AMS. It was high-altitude pulmonary edema (he felt very bad, he had strong ...
18
votes
5answers
2k views

Are headaches a bad sign at altitude?

Last weekend, we had a nice hike up Price Peak in the Sierras. We went from sea level to above 10,000 feet (3,000 m) in about 6 hours. And I had a ROARING headache. I could hear my heart beat in my ...
8
votes
2answers
248 views

How do you diagnose severe altitude illness?

If someone is feeling bad at high altitude, how do you tell if their condition is so severe that it threatens their life unless they descend immediately?
19
votes
4answers
8k views

Altitude sickness when going from sea level to 14,000 ft (4,200m) in a single day

My sister lives at sea level -- Baltimore and Chicago. She is coming to visit me in Denver (5280 ft or 1600m). She wishes to climb Mt Bierstadt (14,065 ft or 4200m) the same day she arrives. I have ...
11
votes
1answer
262 views

Can you pre-identify the risk of severe Altitude sickness?

This BBC news article Mount Everest: Altitude sickness claims third death in four days caught my attention. From what I understand the best cure for Altitude sickness is to get lower, fast. This is ...
28
votes
3answers
1k views

What can I do to prevent altitude sickness?

I will be going above 15000 feet (4500 meters) on a trip next month, and I've heard people will often get altitude sickness. Is there anything I can do beforehand to prevent sickness or take while I'm ...
12
votes
3answers
469 views

Case example on Altitude Mountain Sickness: How to detect and react properly?

I know the theory behind effects of high altitudes on the human body is not entirely understood and because of cross-influence it is a difficult topic. It's not an exact science. Having said that I ...
11
votes
2answers
274 views

Can overexertion cause AMS (Acute Mountain Sickness)?

Recently I did a trek in the Himalayan region and one of the group members was affected by what we believed was AMS at around 4600m. We had to evacuate the person from there and get to around 4100m ...
15
votes
3answers
14k views

Does low blood pressure have an effect on Acute Mountain Sickness?

This question in some ways is related to this question asked by JollySin. When I did my first Himalayan trek, my guide there had told me that those with a low blood pressure (BP) are more susceptible ...
16
votes
1answer
770 views

What would be a safe ascent rate when mountaineering?

I'm training to climb large mountains. What kind of ascent should I train for at altitude. Let's say above 12000 feet and carrying up to 60 lbs?
11
votes
1answer
189 views

Does the altitude you live at influence the time required for acclimatization?

Let's say that two persons are going to attempt to climb a mountain that is 6 000 metres high. These persons are equal in every way, except that one lives at sea level and one lives at 2 500 metres ...
5
votes
2answers
167 views

What is the lowest altitude where the effect of lack of acclimatization can be observed?

What is the lowest altitude where the effect of lack of acclimatization can be observed? I've heard that generally we speak about the need for acclimatization over 3000 meters (9800 feet). Are the ...
13
votes
1answer
217 views

Why would people descend to sleep while acclimatizing?

I am watching a video about a climb of Annapurna. To acclimate the climbers head up from base camp to another camp higher up, stay for a day or two, then return to base camp. They repeat this ...
11
votes
1answer
238 views

Is there a breathing technique to conserve bottled oxygen?

We all know when people run out of O2 up there, trouble follows. Is there a breathing technique to get more mileage out of bottled oxygen? Let's stick to the basic scenario of the need of bottled ...
13
votes
3answers
3k views

Does drinking alcohol cause problems at altitude?

If I'm going to be climbing a mountain, would drinking a small amount at altitude have any negative effects (besides general alcohol effects)?
16
votes
1answer
2k views

Does drinking tea cause problems at altitude?

I've heard from a tour leader that you shouldn't drink tea in high altitude because it makes you thirsty and cause problem in blood circulation. Is this true? Should'nt we drink tea in high altitude?
14
votes
1answer
774 views

Managing the garbage over a lengthy trek at higher altitudes

Following the thread about Everest Base Camp related questions, its almost a globally known fact that the Everest Base Camp is very much crowded and consequently very much into garbage disposal ...
3
votes
0answers
82 views

High Altitude Cooking - Most efficient fuel and stove type [duplicate]

We are planning a hike that will have us above the tree line for several days. I am interested in recommendations regarding stove and fuel types under the reduced oxygen constraints as well as weight....
25
votes
3answers
6k views

Can you get permanent brain damage by spending a day at 10,000ft (~3000m) altitude?

I read some articles that suggested that even moderately high altitudes can lead to some irreversible brain damage. Thus, I was wondering whether that is actually possible and what is its likelihood? ...
19
votes
3answers
4k views

Should one remove their boots in an emergency bivvy situation?

Is there an argument for removing your boots to prevent frostbitten toes. Lets say you are at 4000m in the winter in a snow cave with no sleeping bag and frostbite is probable, but death is unlikely. ...
9
votes
2answers
4k views

Has Joe Simpson ever explained why he did not cut the rope himself?

I have just watched the docudrama "Touching the void" for the umpteenth time. I am a climber and mountaineer and have a great deal of respect for Simon Yates and his efforts to save Joe Simpson and ...
8
votes
1answer
390 views

How can people survive really cold nights outside with minimal equipment?

There are people who had to survive one or more nights in altitudes above 7000 m at temperatures far below zero, without tent, sometimes without sleeping bag or even a proper jacket. Some examples are ...
20
votes
3answers
1k views

What are the real dangers of climbing at high altitude?

I had a campfire discussion not long ago with a man that got pulmonary edema while attempting the summit of Aconcagua, and we got into the discussion of the effects of high elevation. I had always ...
4
votes
2answers
233 views

What affects the acclimatization process? [closed]

We know we need "Climb High and Sleep low" to prevent Altitude Sickness. Now the question is what can affect the acclimatization process? Example: Bring luggage/bag/etc when climbing high. Will ...
7
votes
1answer
232 views

Acclimatization Question

While climbing Killi (Mount Kilimanjaro), we were reminded to drink constantly until we reach the summit. I noticed that when I did stop and take some sips of water on the final push, I initially ...
13
votes
2answers
1k views

Walking through a Thigh-high snow

I have far less experience in trekking where there is snow. I believe walking through snow and through ice are two different techniques. Is there some sort of safe technique to walk on such snow ...
6
votes
4answers
4k views

Why is it unsafe to handle metallic equipment with bare hand at higher altitude?

I have seen a few documentaries where the high altitude mountaineers constantly keep the hand-gloves ON. Is it really because handling the metallic equipment with bare hands can cause a Frostbite? ...
11
votes
2answers
490 views

Acclimitization: Would 20 min at an “oxygen bar” deliver more than an ephermal boost to a healthy person?

My last trip was just a hiking trip, so I stayed at a hotel. For $35, the hotel offered 20 min at their "oxygen bar". I was tempted, but did not succumb. I didn't have a headache, or feel nauseated,...
5
votes
1answer
5k views

Venomous/Semi-Venoumous Snakes at Higher Altitudes

When we camp in rainforests or even country side forest, we are supposed to be very careful about Reptiles, especially Snakes. In India out of the many venomous snakes, I have found Pit Vipers to be ...
11
votes
2answers
286 views

How to begin in alpine tours

I know it's probably too risky to make alpine tours alone, especially when you go over glaciers. I joined DAV to be insured while in the mountains and to be able to use the offerings like courses and ...
32
votes
4answers
10k views

What do mountaineers eat and drink on the day of an Everest summit?

I was watching Everest (2015) on the weekend and was wondering what the mountaineers do for sustenance on the day they attempt to summit. It appeared they left around midnight, aiming for a 2pm ...
7
votes
1answer
305 views

Properly using a Gamow Bag

I was just informed that our group is going to have a Gam-off, technically known as a Gamow Bag. While I have never seen one such thing and so I don't have any experience with them, I browsed the ...
29
votes
2answers
4k views

What makes certain mountains more dangerous than others?

Why do mountains like K2, Nanga Parbat and Annapurna (36 successful attempts, 47 failed) have higher fatality rates than, say, Everest or Cho Oyu (79 successful attempts, 28 failed)? (source) Can I ...
8
votes
1answer
107 views

Is there a connection between stress and difficulty in acclimatizing?

In the experience of users of this site, does intense stress hamper acclimatization? I recently experienced much more difficulty in acclimatizing in an area where I frequently visit. The only ...