How To Make The Most of Your Mountain Climbing Experiences

Theres no doubt about it – mountain climbing is one of the best ways to escape the rat race and be at one with nature. The problem is that your mountain climbing experiences can, inevitably, fade with the passage of time. There is a way around this though; keep a mountain climbing journal detailing your adventures. Lets take a quick look at what you should include:

Take a few moments to consider your most recent mountain climbing experience. What especially sticks in your mind? Now, take a few moments to think about the very first time you went mountain climbing. Theres no doubt that you probably remember a few things about the people you climbed with, the geography of the area and, of course the routes and spectacular spectacular views that you enjoyed. You almost certainly remember the weather. You see, the experiences you have forgotten are now lost to the mists of time but, if you keep a mountain climbing journal, then this won’t be the case.

There are, of course, many well known instances of people keeping such journals over the years. Anne Frank’s Diary – although not a climbing journal obviously –  is probably the most famous example of a journal. In this famous work, Anne kept a detailed account of the time her family spent hiding from the Nazis. Hopefully, your your mountain climbing experiences are a lot more enjoyable but, in any case, keeping a journal will let you remember them as the years pass.

A good mountain climbing journal covers a number of aspects. First of all , it should be compact so don't take up unnecessary space blabbering on about unrelated topis – keep it about your mountaineering experinces. Second, it should have a protective cover to keep it safe from the inevitable rain, spills and so on. Third, the journal should contain some blank space in which you can amend your notes later on. Last, but not least, the journal should contain cue spaces to remind you to keep notes on specific things. What are cues – well they should cover:

1. Who you went with,

2. Where you camped – and if you enjoyed it,

3. Your fellow climbers and people you met aong the way with contact details if possible,

4. The geography

5. The weather – of course

6. Any unusual things that happened on the trip.

7. The routes you took up the mountain and alternatives.

8. Any useful local knowledge that you picked up along the way

At the end of your trip, hopefully, you will get some useful information and memories from your journal such as

1. Contact information for fellow climbers,

2. Enough detail to provide you or a friend with a guide if you climb the location a second time.

3. Memories to reflect upon years later, and

4. Something to pass on to your friends, children and grandchildren.

In order to get the most out of your journal, I reckon that you should write in it just before you begin your climb, continue when you reach the summit and then complete the task when you get back to base. Dont, ever, try and write your journal while in the act of climbing – for obvious reasons – its really not THAT important!

Mountain climbing is a great way to commune with nature so make sure that you preserve the experience as best you can.

Rock Climbing Tips For Beginners

These days there are, of course, loads of activities and exercise programs that you can enjoy to keep in shape and also have some fun but one of the best, and certainly one of the healthiest and most exciting activities is rock climbing. This pastime can be enjoyed both indoors and out – although you definitely get the best out of the sport when you head to the great outdoors – and, its both an engaging solo sport as well as one that can be enjoyed with friends. In fact, it really does offer everything. Hopefully, we have whetted your appetite for this great sport so, here are some simple beginners tips if you are considering taking it up as a hobby.

All the gear and no idea(r) -Rock climbing can be cheap to get started with but if you want to take things seriously you will, unfortunately have to spend some money getting the right equipment – and the right equipment doesn’t come cheap! A good way to get round this problem is, of course, to join a climbing club and use their equipment. There are loads of clubs situated all over the world – we have a great directory of them right here – and they will almost always welcome beginners. If you are determined to get your own equipment though,  we cant stress how important it is not to skimp on the quality – your life might, quite literally , depend on it. Any rock climb is fraught with potential danger from slips to rock falls and having adequate safety equipment is paramount.

Buddy Up – Yes, rock climbing is can be a great solo hobby but, initially, we recommend that you get a partner to help you climb. You need to, literally, learn the ropes and an experienced climbers knowledge, skill and dexterity will go a long way to making you a better climber and helping you to develop and enjoy the sport more. Again, look for a local climbing club or mountaineering school – we recommend Mountain Motion – and you will get a great introduction to the sport that will set you up for a lifetime of enjoyment.

Know when to quit – now we don’t mean throwing your gear away and heading for the pub – but its important to know your limits, especially when you are starting out. Bad weather, altitude, lack of fitness and experience can all contribute to dangerous situations and you need to be able to recognize the signs that you are getting into difficulty long before the situation descends into a dangerous one. Learn about the locations you are going to be climbing in, find out the best routes in and out, and make sure you have the right equipment, and enough of it. Planning to be out for a few days? Make sure your camping and sleeping gear are up to the job! You don’t want the embarrassment of being pulled off the hills by the mountain rescue lads – believe me – and , in some cases, lack of equipment and knowledge can lead to tragic circumstances.

Have fun – above all, rock climbing should be enjoyable. Its healthy, you get to see the great views and enjoy immense satisfaction. Its always challenging and character building and you will learn a lot, make a few mistakes and push yourself up to, and beyond, the boundaries of what you though you could achieve.

Now, get off the internet and get onto the hills – enjoy your climbing.