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Preparing for glacial crossing

18th October 2017 | 0 comments

Preparation for glacier crossing should be meticulously prepared and rehearsed, so that no time is wasted either setting up the basic moving-together system or any of the techniques that may subseqently follow…

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Testing the snow pack

18th October 2017 | 0 comments

There are a number of tests that can be done to assess the state of the snow. None of these should be taken in isolation, but used to help build up a picture of what the snow conditions in that immediate area are likely to be…

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Gully climbing

18th October 2017 | 0 comments

The ascent of a gully will often be the first introduction to snow climbing for many mountaineers. By their very nature, gullies tend to take lines provided by natural breaks and seams in the cliffs, and these can often be at a reasonably easy angle. As such, many gullies are in the lower grades of climbing difficulty, and provide an excellent way for novices to start to learn about snow-craft, winter ropework and climbing skills…

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Clove hitch

18th October 2017 | 0 comments

This is an extremely useful knot, and it is used throughout all areas of mountaineering. Its simplicity of tying, allied with its ease of adjustment, make it ideal to secure yourself to an anchor system. It can also be tied with one hand, a useful property when needing to arrange an anchor whilst holding on to the rock or an ice axe for security…

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Figure-of-eight knot

18th October 2017 | 0 comments

This is an essential knot, and it can be tied in a number of ways. It is the main method that many people use when tying on to a harness, and when tied slightly differently it is a quick and effective method of tying on to anchors…

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Walking on a bearing

31st May 2017 | 0 comments

Hold the compass firmly in your hand in front of your body, making sure that there are no metal objects nearby. Rotate yourself until the needle sits in the correct manner over the arrow on the bottom of the housing, ensuring that you have the north end of the needle, often painted red, over the pointed part of the arrow…