Questions tagged [mountaineering]

This tag should be used on questions that discuss possible places for mountaineering in a specific region; do's and don'ts during a mountaineering expedition; safety and equipment associated with mountaineering; general advice for making it a better experience; etc.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
22
votes
8answers
3k views

What do I do if I lose my belay plate?

The scenario My climbing partner and I are at the top of a pitch and we drop a belay plate to the ground. There is no safe descent, we were planning on rappelling down off safe anchors. What do we ...
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 ...
14
votes
5answers
22k views

Knee pain when descending a mountain

It's been said by a specialist doctor that any form of mountain descent would affect your knee caps. Do old mountaineers have knee problems? Is it related to the way you descend?
21
votes
2answers
44k views

How do climbers retrieve anchored rope?

The following is a scene I have always been perplexed about. I’ve seen it many times. A mountain climber has no one above him as he descends and is trailing rope behind him that he is using to ...
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?
9
votes
1answer
5k views

How to calculate how much sugar to use as antifreeze in drinking water?

Sea water does not freeze until about −2 °C (28 °F) if you add more salt you can lower the freeze point to -21°C. We know from How much sea water can I safely drink? that drinking salt water is not ...
14
votes
3answers
2k views

Training to prepare for oxygen deficiency in the high mountains

I would like to prepare myself for the climb in the high mountains (for now by "high mountains" I mean elevation 4000 m and more, but eventually eight-thousanders). What can I do to improve my ...
9
votes
2answers
1k views

Is dyneema rope without a sheath safe for climbing?

I recently was given some old Chouinard hexes my uncle used back in the 70s. They look great, and I see no reason why I can't re-sling them and use them as perfectly safe protection. I've found some ...
23
votes
7answers
738 views

Light-weight emergency overnight-gear

What is a good emergency-overnight-sleeping-setup when every ounce counts, like on long technical routes (grade V or VI) where the goal is to do it in one day (without hauling), but one wants to ...
26
votes
5answers
1k views

Is there a definitive list of the tallest mountains in the world that require little or no mountaineering experience?

I was wondering if there is a list of the tallest mountains in the world where you can walk or scramble up to the summit? As opposed to using even basic rope skills?
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 ...
17
votes
5answers
10k views

At what point do I need snow goggles or glacier glasses when hiking?

I'll be backpacking Europe in the winter (snow and rain) and parts of my trip will be outdoors, such as hiking in Dolomites, Italy. For purposes of packing light and risk of losing expensive gear, I ...
18
votes
3answers
6k views

How to walk as a roped party on a glacier?

If you want to walk on a glacier you usually do this roped together as a team. How to walk as a roped party on a glacier? What I have to pay attention to when knotting the rope? Related question: ...
15
votes
5answers
7k views

Do mountains really make their own weather, and if so why?

Forecasts for the mountains generally seem to be somewhere between useless and unreliable. Afternoon thunderstorms, clouds that come out of nowhere, unexpected rain showers, etc... Anyone who has ...
11
votes
4answers
4k views

Anchor without cordelette?

I have the John Long book on climbing anchors and also a couple of others that describe the subject more briefly (Pesterfield, Traditional Lead Climbing, and Freedom of the Hills). When it comes to ...
9
votes
1answer
443 views

How do you predict weather with an altimeter while mountaineering and or backpacking?

I do know that if your elevation rises while staying in the same position, the pressure is decreasing and that it is a sign of bad weather incoming and a decrease in elevation means that the pressure ...
17
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the relationship between altitude gain and temperature decrease when mountaineering?

In the absence of inversions, going up mountains will bring you into lower temperatures as you get higher. What is the rule of thumb for how the temperature decreases with altitude?
13
votes
1answer
3k views

Using a rope “Alpine Style”/Moving together

I've seen people using a ropes "alpine style" in the past but I'm not sure on the specifics. By alpine style I mean where the rope is coiled around the body and attached to a second of third person. ...
12
votes
3answers
478 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 ...
55
votes
7answers
10k views

Is it dangerous to rope together on an ascent of hard packed ice?

This image has recently come under considerable criticism on social media for dangerous mountaineering practices. The location is unknown as the qualified mountain guide observer wanted to maintain ...
18
votes
2answers
4k views

How do I rescue someone out of a crevasse?

What is the technique involved in crevasse rescues? Presuming a group are all moving together on a glacier and the leader of the party has fallen into a crevasse (collapsed snow bridge, etc.). The ...
18
votes
4answers
5k views

How to detect a crevasse on a glacier

When you're walking in a roped party over a glacier, how can the leader detect crevasses? Sometimes it's possible to walk existing tracks, but even then it's possible to have a crevasse fall. What ...
15
votes
1answer
4k views

How do I self arrest without an ice axe?

Self-arresting is used to stop a mountaineer who has fallen and is sliding down a slope. Ice axes are generally used for self-arrest, but what should a climber do to self arrest if he has lost his ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

How many “Munro” revisions have there been?

In 1891 Hugh Munro published his list of mountains in Scotland over 3000 feet, since then the list has been revised a number of times and the current total stands at 282. How many revisions have been ...
4
votes
2answers
236 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 ...
4
votes
0answers
412 views

How to abseil without a descender device? [duplicate]

Lets assume I am abseiling multiple pitches with some tuber device and at some point at a belay I dropped the device. How do I improvise something that does the braking while descending? I still have ...
37
votes
10answers
10k views

Mountaineering with a 6-year-old kid in winter

I'm planning to go to the Austrian Alps with my 6-year-old daughter in one week. We would like to go on Großer Priel, 2515 m. The plan is to go for three days (sleeping two nights in a tent on a ...
18
votes
2answers
6k views

Best type of rope for glacier travel?

What sort of rope would be ideal for glacier travel? I have a 10mm 60m rope, but this is quite heavy. Would a 9mm 50m rope be suitable for a team of three, crossing glaciers in the Swiss Alps?
19
votes
2answers
1k views

How do you make a snow shelter?

Sometimes when mountaineering, there may be an emergency situation which leaves you in bad weather with no or damaged shelter (such as returning from a summit attempt or after a wild and crazy storm). ...
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 ...
23
votes
6answers
36k views

How do I know what size ice axe I should get?

I'm going to start mountaineering. Is there a recommended size per height/weight for ice axes for general mountaineering?
20
votes
2answers
775 views

Things to consider when buying sunglasses

I am going to buy sunglasses. Here is how and where I am going to use them: mountain trekking - with altitude mostly below 2000, however I will use them in the following months on higher mountains (...
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 ...
10
votes
2answers
431 views

What footwear did mountaineers wear in the 19th century?

I'm particularly curious about their footwear.
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 ...
25
votes
7answers
25k views

What are the key differences between Mountaineering and Rock Climbing?

I think the title speaks for itself. I have done a basic google search and I do not find the references to be sufficient. I'm looking for a short synopsis that would educate a layman such as myself.
24
votes
3answers
451 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 ...
12
votes
3answers
3k views

When I do and when I don't need shoes with ankle supports?

There has been a lot of lot of discussion about whether the shoes should have ankle support or not. I have seen the discussions (not just on The Great Outdoors, but elsewhere too) that ankle muscles ...
11
votes
1answer
1k views

Sustainable systems for carrying out human waste

I am looking for sustainable alternatives for carrying out human waste. WAG bags, though convenient, sadly have to end up in land-fills. I am looking for a system where the non-biodegrading components ...
8
votes
1answer
4k views

Taking Aspirin in higher altitudes

Reading this answer and especially the comments leads me to questions: Should one use Aspirin in high altitudes? Should one use it as a precaution or only when actually getting headache or other ...
6
votes
1answer
298 views

How accurate is the 3.5 - 5 degree F temperature drop per 1000 feet rule of thumb?

Related Q (especially its link to inversion): What is the relationship between altitude gain and temperature decrease when mountaineering? This question is concerning the commonly used rule of thumb ...
4
votes
1answer
278 views

What was the temperature without windchill for the climbers that “Minus 148 Degrees” is written about?

The book Minus 148 Degrees is written about a winter climb of Denali in which a rapid weather change forced the climbers to seek refuge in an emergency snow cave. The title is a reference to the ...
30
votes
4answers
6k views

Should one attempt to rescue a stranger from a crevasse or wait for mountain rescue?

Imagine the situation. You are somewhere in the montblanc massif crossing a glacier and you come across a pair of climbers. You/ I are well trained in crevasse rescue, but are not a certified guide. ...
10
votes
2answers
794 views

Do I need to break in double plastic mountaineering boots?

I just bought my first pair of mountaineering boots. I know hiking boots need to be properly broken in before taking them on the trail, but what about plastic mountaineering boots? These are ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

What’s the difference between a B and a T ice axe?

Some ice axes are labeled as “B”, others as “T”. What’s the meaning of these letters and what are their practical implications?
5
votes
3answers
439 views

How can I safely climb a glacial route with just a kid or one other person?

I want to climb a mountain with my daughter. There is a glacier on the route that we should cross. Other routes take much longer or are technically more difficult. The glacier does not have many ...
4
votes
1answer
219 views

Why are full body harnesses uncommon in mountaineering?

In principle, it is known that full body harnesses are useful for situations where the center of gravity is higher - e.g. for children, or for Alpine situations involving carrying heavy loads. A full ...
4
votes
1answer
891 views

What is an alpine start?

Sometimes climbers/mountaineers will say that they are getting an alpine start. What does this mean and why would they want to do this?
3
votes
1answer
210 views

How to get up for an alpine start without an alarm?

Sometimes, one needs to get up for an alpine start i.e. really, really early, and yet not have a functioning alarm. Cell phones have a tendency to lose the correct time when shut off and then turned ...
3
votes
0answers
65 views

GPS unit for road cycling and mountaineering [closed]

I am looking for a GPS device for road cycling (road navigation and gpx tracking) and mountaineering (topo maps, compass, barometric elevation / pressure). I am finding no products explicitly marketed ...