INTERNATIONAL YOUTH EVENT: MOUNTAIN FESTIVAL AND INTERNATIONAL ROCK CLIMBING IN FYR MACEDONIA

Held from 24-31 August in Demir Kapija, FYR Macedonia, the UIAA Youth Commission, in partnership with the Russian Mountaineering Federation, Macedonian Mountain Sport Federation and Macedonian Sport Climbing Federation is organising a youth mountain festival and international rock climbing class. The event is open to youngsters from 13-25+ years old. Activities include rock climbing, training, hiking, competitions, mountaineering, ecological and cultural activities and throughout opportunities to develop friendships. Details on logistics, accommodation, pricing and equipment...

MOUNTAIN SKILLS: How to quickly protect a belay station

Always protect your belay station with a redirect point in order to limit the consequences of a lead fall. Ideally this should be a high anchor that is separate to the belay station, however this is not always possible. If the belay station is bomber, the lead climber can clip one of the anchor points as his redirect. There should always be a minimum of 1.5 meters between this redirect and the belayer’s hands, which may require the belayer to lengthen his tether/tie-in...

SAFETY CONCERNS: ACCESS RESTRICTED TO MONT BLANC

As reported in several international news outlets over the past few days, including the BBC, French authorities have issued a decree restricting access to the summit of Mont Blanc. The reasons are related to overcrowding and 'safety and public order' risks. As the BBC reports, the current restrictions, related to the peak's 'Royal Route' will be imposed for eight days from 14 July. The restrictions mean that only climbers who can prove that they already have a...

MOUNTAIN SKILLS: How to provide assistance to a partner stuck mid-rappel

Your partner is in trouble (e.g., knot stuck in his rappel device, friction hitch has jammed, etc.)—he is stuck mid-rappel! The following steps will let you free him either from above or below. Freeing your partner from above 1 — Reach your stuck partner by rappelling down the rope under tension. 2 — Stop approximately 1 meter above your partner. 3 — Make a safety knot in the slack rope below your partner. This knot will prevent slippage should anything go wrong. 4 — Using a...

ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES OF USING HIKING STICKS IN THE MOUNTAINS

The UIAA Medical Commission has produced a dedicated paper on the use of hiking sticks. It was first published in 2008 and is available in Czech, English, German, Italian, Japanese, Polish, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. Many hikers, mountaineers and climbers use telescopic (hiking) sticks because they may aid walking up/downhill and may also ease the strain on the spine and the lower extremity joints particularly the knees. The reductions during downhill walking with hiking poles are...