Russia reports success for extreme sports event on Mount Elbrus

The event, which included a high-speed run to the top of Europe's highest peak, the 5,642m Mount Elbrus, a snowshoe race and ski-mountaineering competitions (vertical race and rally), took place from May 15-18. Red Fox Asia team members Andrey Puchinin (Kazakhstan), Sergey Seliverstov (Kyrgyzstan) and Semen Dvornichenko (Kyrgyzstan) took the three top spots in the men's snowshoe event. The surprise in this race was Russian Roman Gubanov who had the bad luck of breaking his bindings...

UIAA training standards take on increased importance

Participants from 13 countries have met in Wales to discuss the importance of international training standards and exchanged experiences on developing training programmes. The UIAA Training Standards Seminar took place from May 5-7 and was hosted by Mountain Leader Training UK and Mountain Centre at Plas y Brenin in Wales. The seminar focused on the benefits of having  international standards for training schemes and the importance of local knowledge. When a mountain leader or instructor chooses to work in...

New treatment for frostbite saves limbs

An American medical study has tested new successful techniques and drugs to treat frostbite. In the future, this treatment could mean that fewer mountaineers suffering from severe frostbite will have to have arms, legs, fingers or toes amputated. For mountaineers who enjoy winter climbing and take part in high altitude expeditions, frostbite can be very dangerous and lead to gangrene and amputation of limbs. The standard treatments, to re-warm the patient and amputation in severe cases,...

Eco friendly Everest summit

The members of the Eco Everest expedition 2008 have reached the summit. The purpose of the expedition was to field test an environmentally friendly approach to climbing and draw attention to climate change. You can read more about the Eco Everest expedition in our previous article. One of the expedition members, Apa Sherpa, broke his own world record on the morning of May 22, when he summited the mountain for the 18th time. Apa has the most climbs...

Early warning for glacial lake outburst floods

In the Khumbu region of the Himalayas, a pilot early warning system for glacial lake outbursts is being developed. Glacial lake outbursts can be caused by global warming and is a major threath to people in the region. The work is done by scientists from the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development, ICIMOD, in cooperation with the Nepal Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation and the Keio University of Japan. Glacial lakes are formed by melting...

Spurs banned at Ice Climbing competitions

The UIAA Ice Climbing Commission (ICICC) has decided to ban the use of spurs, effective from the 2009 competition season. The decision was made after a new survey of competition competitors showed that the majority of the athletes prefer not to use spurs. The commission notes that the use of spurs is becoming increasingly rare not just in competitions, but also in the opening of new routes. Following this natural trend, spurs will therefore not be allowed...

Everest Closure

Statement: At the General Assembly of the UIAA in October 2007, the member federations applauded the promise of the Chinese Mountaineering Association (CMA) to take the UIAA flag to the summit of Mt Everest, as part of the Olympic torch relay. The logic was simple. The torch relay was part of the Olympics, the UIAA is a member of the Olympic family and the Chinese and Nepalese mountaineering federations are members of the UIAA. At this time...

Press release: Mount Everest

UIAA regrets Mount Everest access decision by China Statement by Mike Mortimer, President of UIAA (International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation) The UIAA regrets the recent decision by the government of China to close the north side of Mount Everest to mountaineering expeditions for several weeks during May of this year. This restriction will effectively curtail all expeditions attempting to climb the mountain during the spring of 2008. The only exception appears to be the Chinese expedition that...

Youth ascent of Mt Kazbek

If you have never before climbed a 5000 meter peak, here is your chance. This summer young mountaineers aged 18-30 years will ascend Mt Kazbek in Georgia. This international ascent is organised by the the Club Mountain Traveller (CMT) on behalf of the Mountaineering & Climbing Association of Georgia from 12th – 19th July. Young members from all UIAA associations are welcome. The event has been offered since 2003 and you can read a report by...

Climbing meet in South Africa

Are you living in the northern hemisphere and can't get enough of snow and ice? Then why not take the chance to try out ice climbing in Africa in the middle of July? The KwaZulu-Natal Section of the Mountain Club of South Africa is inviting you to a Winter meet, taking place in Drakensberg, South Africa from the 5 to 13 July 2008. The objective is to introduce the participants to Africa and its premier ice climbing...