Plan before setting out!
Consider the equipment, experience, capabilities and enthusiasm of the party members.
Check the weather forecast and local conditions; Mountains can be major undertakings. Night encroaches earlier in the winter the further north you go!
Learn first aid
Many accidents occur towards the latter part of the day when both your energy levels and those of your phone battery will be run down. Did you remember to charge your battery before setting out?
Footwear and Clothing
Wear suitable boots with a treaded sole, which provide support for ankles.
Clothing should be colourful, warm, windproof and waterproof.
Take spare warm clothing and perhaps a hat and gloves; it is always colder on the tops.
Food and Drink
In addition to the usual sandwiches take chocolate, dates, or similar sweet things, which restore energy quickly. You may not need them yourself, but someone else might.
Streams on hills are usually drinkable, in an emergency, if fast-
Equipment and its Use
A map, compass (and the ability to use them), and at least one reliable watch should always be carried in the party.
If you carry a GPS, at least know how to read your current position. It could save a lot of hassle in an emergency when speaking to the Mountain Rescue Team.
In all conditions, it is wise to carry a whistle, torch, spare batteries and bulbs; but in winter conditions, an ice-
Climbers and mountain bikers are all urged to wear helmets at all times.
If in groups, make sure party leaders are experienced; do not let the party become separated.
Take special care of the youngest and weakest in dangerous places.
If you prefer to go alone, be aware of the additional risk. Let people know your route before you start, stick to it as far as you can and notify them of any changes.
Be prepared to turn back if conditions are against you; even if this upsets your plan.
If you have a serious problem, get a message to the Police (999) for help as soon as possible and keep injured/exhausted people safe and warm until help reaches you. If you cannot contact anyone, use six whistle blasts or torch flashes, repeated at one minute intervals, to signal an emergency.
Report changes of route or timetable to someone who is expecting you.
Do not rely on a mobile phone to get you out of trouble.
Signal coverage in mountainous areas is very unreliable.
Mountain Rescue Teams have many years of experience in calls from mobile telephones and, whilst they are excellent when they work, there are many things that can go wrong. Even moving a few feet in the mountains can mean losing the signal. You will be advised of best practice when contacted.
If you are able to summon help using your mobile phone KEEP IT SWITCHED ON SO YOU CAN BE RE-
Slopes of ice or steep snow
Very steep grass slopes, especially if frozen or wet
Gullies, gorges and stream beds
Streams in spate
Snow cornices on ridges or gully tops
Exceeding your experience and abilities
Loss of concentration, especially toward the end of a long day
Weather changes -
Ice on path (carry an ice-
Excessive cold or heat (dress appropriately)
Incipient exhaustion (know the signs; rest and keep warm)
Accident or illness (don’t panic -
Passage of Time -
It is no disgrace to turn back if you are not certai.n
A party must be governed by the capabilities of the weakest member.