When considering an outdoor adventure, and climbing in particular, it’s important not to forget to carefully plan your adventure. Even though you might just want to get out there and climb, some of the best adventures you’ll have are ones that are carefully planned. Adventure brand, Mountain Designs, brings you some suggestions to make your next climb safer.
Planning for your Adventure
One of the most valuable things you can do before you set out on your climbing adventure is to research your trip, making sure you’ve studied a current map and taken any advice that is available to you through experienced climbers and local personnel. Ensure you understand thoroughly what the environment you’re about to enter is like, and be very aware of the risks that are associated with your climb. This will give you a safer – and therefore more fulfilling – adventure. Don’t bite off more than you can chew when it comes to your physical ability either. It’s great to push your limits, but not to the detriment of your safety and well-being.
When planning your route, make sure you note the local emergency response team’s numbers (find all allocated numbers, not just 000) and bring along multiple working charged phones or radios if possible. A PLB (Personal Location Beacon) is a great idea if you’re out regularly. Another thing to take into consideration is that emergency responses can take time, especially if you’re in a remote location, so you should always have a plan for the unexpected.
Make sure you’ve left a hard-copy of your route and intentions in your vehicle, and try not to stray from your plans without leaving indications. Don’t forget to have an emergency contact person – someone you trust who you’ll give your route intentions to, and who will contact authorities if you’re not back on time! Remember to notify them if your plans change. Also, the above is useless if you’re not a good navigator. Before attempting any climb, learn how to read a map and use a compass for those inevitable times your electronic navigation will let you down. There are plenty of resources online for learning this.
Choosing your equipment
Now that you’ve nailed your safety planning for this adventure, let’s look at some of the tools you need: some of the best climbing gear in the business can be found at Mountain Designs and you could go a little crazy buying all the things you might need during planning. When you’re going out you need to really consider what needs to be taken with you though, as there’s a fine line between over-packing and under-packing!
Anything in the essential list like water, food, navigation and communication items are always first in line. Then anything else, like tools and gear, should be planned accordingly, with a pack size selected based on that. Here are a few good lightweight pack options, including hydration packs. While it’s dependent on the location and the weather, thermals will keep you warm in any cooler climate and will be an essential on those windswept bluffs.
A climber who plans is a safer one. There are a tonne of things that will keep you safe outdoors, however, all the planning in the world cannot deflect the unexpected – you can only defend yourself against it. You can do this by jumping online and learning from the best. When you’re actually outdoors, you can draw some inspiration from the high-intensity adventure of rock climbers Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson with their deep message while trying to scale El Capitan… just keep going and your desires will come to fruition. When you’ve made it, it’s time to celebrate, you’ve done something outstanding, enjoy it and then plan your next adventure. Until then, we’re all outdoors in spirit, so you can imagine the risky stuff now, then plan to avoid it in the future!
This content is brought to you by Mountain Designs.