Skiing and ice climbing in the UK can be a hit or miss affair but when conditions are good, there’s no place many of us would rather be. Whether you’re in the Lakeland Fells or the Highlands of Scotland, the window for fun can often be a very short one so if you’re going to make the most out of it, you need to be prepared.
It’s all about having a strategy – an idea of where you want to go and what you want to achieve, the right partner and equipment to enable you to achieve your objective and most importantly – a strategy that keeps you safe out in the mountains. If you’re heading out for a day’s ski touring or winter climbing in the UK, you should ‘Be Avalanche Aware’ which means having a strategy that not only will help you to avoid getting caught in a slide but one that will enable you to deal with the consequences should the worst occur.
From a winter mountain users point of view an avalanche is the result of the interaction between the three components of Terrain, Snow and People. All three key elements are required to involve you in an avalanche. On the People side of things there’s a lot you can do before leaving your doorstep to ensure a safe journey into the mountains.
Remember: ‘The mountains will always be there, the trick is to make sure you are too.’
Mike Austin runs Avalanche Geeks, who are a partner of Haglofs and provide internationally recognised certficated avalanche courses both in the Scotland and the Alps. They train approx 100 people a year from keen backcountry skiers and climbers to Mountain Rescue Teams and climbing instructors. A lot of the above advice is expanded upon in a leaflet created by the Scottish Avalanche Information Service called ‘Be Avalanche Aware’ that is widely available with more information online: http://beaware.sais.gov.uk/
18 March 2016 by Haglöfs UK
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Podiatrist Andrew Stanley will be in the George Fisher store offering 1:1 help and advice for your feet.