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39 votes
Accepted

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

Yes, you absolutely should rescue the climber when the situation allows. The reason that matters most is suspension trauma: Prolonged motionless hanging in a harness can lead to loss of consciousness ...
imsodin's user avatar
  • 21.7k
20 votes

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

Additionally to @imsodins brilliant answer, I'd say the same applies to almost any mountain rescue situation: if you are able to contribute to the situation while maintaining your own safety, do it (...
knitti's user avatar
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19 votes
Accepted

Crevasse rescue with knots in the rope

In a 3:1 (Z-pulley) haul, the victim's rope is used for hauling directly. As you point out correctly, a surface rescue is impossible if you have knots in the rope, since the rope is under tension and ...
Felix's user avatar
  • 6,859
14 votes

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

While children can be proficient mountaineers and well trained, there are things they likely cannot do and some additional risks they face. For example, children are more susceptible to hypothermia. ...
StrongBad's user avatar
  • 10.7k
11 votes

Can microspikes replace crampons when crossing ice in summer?

Absolutely yes. I don't leave my home without them (well, another model than the one you linked) if there is any chance of hitting snow/ice during a hike. For such hikes, they always, at any time of ...
AnoE's user avatar
  • 1,918
11 votes

What equipment is needed for glacier hiking?

about excess rope, rope length and how to split rope please see: https://outdoors.stackexchange.com/a/7025/2653 As you see on the picture, the two ends of the rope is devided evenly between the ...
Wills's user avatar
  • 12.2k
11 votes

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

There is a clear answer here: just don't do it! Glacier rescue is challenging - you need to know the techniques and practice them seriously. And I can tell you from experience that a glacier rescue ...
Tullochgorum's user avatar
  • 11.7k
11 votes
Accepted

Are "fall-arrester" devices used in climbing/mountaineering?

Professional use These devices are intended for professional rope work. When doing rope access work, there are typically two ropes involved. One is the working line which is loaded with the worker's ...
Manziel's user avatar
  • 7,285
10 votes

Why aren't ground penetrating radar drones used for hidden crevasse detection

Glaciers move, some quite quickly, up to 40 m (~130 feet) per day. As the glacier moves over terrain, crevasses open and close based on local pressures in the glacier (e.g. as it passes over a lump of ...
bob1's user avatar
  • 10.6k
9 votes

How do people camp on ice?

You don't use ordinary tent pegs, you use something a lot more substantial. For example, pictured below are two ice screws (cheap ones I found a picture of on Ali Express), which would work if the ice ...
Greg Hewgill's user avatar
  • 1,543
8 votes

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

The most important point in any emergency is to avoid making the situation worse. The situation you describe is dynamic and may have several outcomes. Its not really possible to make a decision ...
Qwerky's user avatar
  • 941
8 votes

What equipment is needed for glacier hiking?

As already stated several times: If you know what you need to do on a glacier, you know what material to take. The other way round does not work: Just having the necessary gear will not insure proper ...
imsodin's user avatar
  • 21.7k
8 votes

Obtaining drinking water from a glacier or icefield, in the absence of snow or reachable meltwater

Another answer talks about hardness. There is some relevance to that, but more importantly, ice is brittle, regardless of how hard it is. You don't need much of a tool to scrape or crack chunks from ...
Olin Lathrop's user avatar
  • 21.4k
7 votes

Can microspikes replace crampons when crossing ice in summer?

Depends on how steep your ice patch is. Crampons are really good when you have steep slopes and you need to do some real front pointing. Crampons are good for mixed climbing as well. They are also ...
Ricketyship's user avatar
  • 7,785
6 votes
Accepted

Obtaining drinking water from a glacier or icefield, in the absence of snow or reachable meltwater

The Mohs hardness scale is a common scale used to describe the hardness (resistance to scratching) of different materials. The hardness of ice is between 1.5 and 6 Mohs. The hardness of granite is 7 ...
StrongBad's user avatar
  • 10.7k
6 votes

Can microspikes replace crampons when crossing ice in summer?

It depends, if the snow is pretty level and you don't need the front points on the crampons to get up things, then yes microspikes can be a good substitute as they are certainly lighter and don't ...
Charlie Brumbaugh's user avatar
5 votes
Accepted

Comparison of dangers on the glacier in summer and winter

I think you just excluded the main difference which are avalanches (on steeper sections). Another difference is the higher risk of freezing to death in winter but this is not glacier specific and even ...
Manziel's user avatar
  • 7,285
5 votes

Crevasse rescue with knots in the rope

In addition to Felix's excellent answer of what should be done it practice, it is well worth knowing how to pass a knot in the rope (whether while rappelling or hauling). This will generally be more ...
erfink's user avatar
  • 4,207
5 votes

Why would a glacier-fed river have its peak flow levels at mid morning?

The main reason for the peak flow to happen at a certain time is that the meltwater pulse takes that amount of time to propagate. If the peak Hoh River flow 40 miles from the source happens at 09:00, ...
Dave X's user avatar
  • 1,134
4 votes
Accepted

Bivouac on glacier: how to be sure not to stand on a crevasse?

Probing is the best and only guaranteed technique for safely locating crevasses. Knowing how crevasses form will help you identify areas where crevasses are more likely to be, but you can't be certain ...
ShemSeger's user avatar
  • 53.6k
4 votes
Accepted

Crossing small corners of a glacier when hiking in summer

I traversed my first glacier when I was 5 years old in Kokanee Glacier Provincial Park. For the most part, if you're following an established trail, then you likely aren't going to be venturing far ...
ShemSeger's user avatar
  • 53.6k
4 votes

How do I tell if a glacier is safe for crossing?

I'm not an alpinist, but I think that the answer relating to "conditions" is entirely dependent on the local conditions for the position on the glacier where you intend to cross. Sure, crevasses are ...
bob1's user avatar
  • 10.6k
4 votes

How do I strengthen my ankles for long, steepish, snow and glacier routes?

Go jogging. Not on asphalt or paved roads, go "off-piste". Woodland trails are great. If you are able to, choose low shoes with low to moderate damping. Then run. Jogging over uneven ground is what I ...
Stian's user avatar
  • 935
4 votes
Accepted

How do I strengthen my ankles for long, steepish, snow and glacier routes?

Get a balance board. When you brush your teeth, stand on it with bare feet and balance. Once you become stronger, balance standing on one foot. I did this during marathon training with good results. ...
henning no longer feeds AI's user avatar
4 votes

What combination of tools is ideal for 40-60 degree snow and ice slopes? (Piolet(s), Whippets, ice tools)

One of the most important thing in ski mountaineering is weight of equipment. So you should take only what you really need. That will allow you quickly move and enjoy a trip. Regarding what to take (...
user1209304's user avatar
  • 1,387
4 votes

What combination of tools is ideal for 40-60 degree snow and ice slopes? (Piolet(s), Whippets, ice tools)

Personally I would go with poles and one ice-axe as long as possible. As soon as there are have prolonged steep slopes (defined by having to ascend with front points of crampons) I would take two axes....
imsodin's user avatar
  • 21.7k
4 votes

How to detect a crevasse on a glacier

Variations in the appearance of the snow can help detect where crevasses may be. It often helps to get a low angled light perspective such as at dawn or sunset. Depressions in the snow cover may be ...
Mark Hackney's user avatar
4 votes

How to split 3-5 people into rope teams for glacier travel?

You are not going to like the answer, but a 5 member team should recruit a 6th person. I think 3 people per rope is ideal. 4 people always seems like too many and 2 people makes stopping a fall really ...
StrongBad's user avatar
  • 10.7k
4 votes

Are "fall-arrester" devices used in climbing/mountaineering?

This kind of device is rarely used in sports as it is only useful when used with fixed ropes. You mentioned crevasses: The rope is not fixed here and you are tied in, so it is hard to image how such a ...
anderas's user avatar
  • 4,447

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