Mountain Safety
You should carry sufficient equipment for the length of the expedition and the worst weather conditions possible. Below is the minimum required:
  • Clothes: Clothing should be of several layers, the base layer of wicking materials to distribute moisture. One or more mid layer of lightweight fleece materials for warmth. An outer layer, which is windproof and waterproof (preferably breathable), including over-trousers.

  • Boots: Suitable sturdy walking boots, appropriate for the season in which you are walking.

  • Backpack: A sturdy pack with good comfortable harness and external straps for compression and attachment of additional equipment. The size of the pack will depend on the length of the expedition and anticipated weather conditions. A waterproof liner is recommended.

A full checklist of equipment you should consider:

  • Waterproof and Windproof Jacket and Trousers
  • Fleece and spare fleece
  • Hat / Gloves / Scarf
  • Emergency bivouac bag
  • Whistle
  • Head torch (+spare batteries)
  • Map & Compass
  • Food (including extra high energy foods)
  • Water (and warm drink in winter)
  • Gaiters
  • Sun cream
  • First Aid Kit
  • Sunglasses
  • Walking poles (your knees will last longer if you use these)

In winter conditions the following are required:

  • Ice axe
  • Crampons
  • Snow goggles
N.B. It is important that you know how to use this equipment.
International Distress Signals
If you require help, give 6 blasts on whistle / flash of torch / shouts, followed by one minute gap, then repeated. If someone has spotted you or if you see this respond with 3 blasts on whistle / flash of torch / shouts.
Weather
Always check the forecast. Be prepared for wind-chill that can decrease temperatures significantly. Also be aware of the drop in temperature with the increase in altitude, 1°C for every 100m. Weather can change rapidly in the Scottish Mountains, and in the worst conditions you may have to shelter overnight or until found. Finally, the decision on whether to climb must be made once you reach the start of your route. If conditions have unexpectedly worsened, turn back and live to climb another day.
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