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Battle Life-Threatening Altitude


Battle Life-Threatening Altitude
How to cross the world’s most treacherous terrain
Battle Life-Threatening Altitude, How to cross the world’s most treacherous terrain

Mountains are the ultimate test of survival. They’re prone to rapid changes in weather and it’s near impossible to predict. Even if the base is warm and sunny, by the time you reach the summit, low cloud can blind you, rain can make the terrain slippery and the cold can freeze you.

Good preparation is essential and you’ll need a lot of kit. Pack a rucksack with a map, compass and a flashlight or headtorch, along with a brightly coloured emergency blanket, and dress in thermals and waterproof and windproof clothing. You’ll also need to keep well hydrated. A lack of fluid at high altitude will result in dizziness, intense headaches and even frostbite. If you don’t have any water to hand, try to find a stream or melt some snow or ice to drink.
The altitude is a real issue for many mountaineers. As you climb higher, the air pressure reduces, meaning there is less oxygen for you to breathe. This lack of oxygen will cause your brain to reduce activity in all but the most important organs, making your limbs heavy and head dizzy. The most important thing to do is rest and re-oxygenate your body.



If you are trying to escape the mountain, the best way is to head downward, but this isn’t always possible. Mountains have complicated structures and often there isn’t an easy path down. If possible, put markers along your route to show where you have already been, to avoid walking in circles. As well as being potentially confusing, mountains also hide dangerous crevices. Keep your eyes peeled for breaks in the snow or ice and if you are ever unsure, try to find rocks or stones to throw in front of you that could give away a hidden abyss.
If the visibility does become too poor, the safest thing might be to bed down. Find a spot out of the wind and protected from any snow or rainfall, like a cave or overhanging cliff. Even though it might sound strange, pack your surroundings with snow, because it does have insulating properties. Pile yourself with as many layers as possible and this should provide the warmth so you can make it through the night and try to find your way out in the light.