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Avoiding Death by Slide Climbing

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  • Avoiding Death by Slide Climbing

    Slide climbing not only can be hazardous to your life, but it can end it completely. Even though there is information available to help you keep out of trouble all the information in the world is no substitute for experience.

    Undertaking any of the slide climbs that you may read about in this internet forum is a potentially hazardous activity and could kill you. Particular phrases and descriptions you read in a trip report may lead you to believe little danger or difficulty is involved. This is NOT TRUE. Mountains are inherently dangerous and slide climbing can be doubly dangerous.

    You are advised to go with caution and select a route within your level of ability and experience. If you are not sure what your abilities are maybe you donít have any ability. Those without proper skills and experience should enrol in an appropriate course given by a recognized climbing school or an approved rock climbing guide.

    However, bear this in mind: many course teach the basic moves for moderate rock climbs but few, if any teach you how to avoid technical rock climbing. Avoidance of technical rock climbing could actually define slide climbing and scrambling. Climbing basics are useful but finding a safe route up a slide is more important. This skill cannot be taught but develops over time.

    The nature of wilderness is change. Slide characteristics can change suddenly, seasonally or over years (algae, rock shearing, Irene!) Surface conditions may change in moments during rain/sleet/snow etc. Dry areas with traction may lose traction when wet. Trip reports on this forum (or any) represent a snapshot in time and as such may be out of date in a very short time. They are also subjective in nature based on a personís experience which may be minimal or substantial.

    Do not put unbridled faith in the information you find in this internet forum. Develop and use your own judgment. Persons using the information contained in this web resource do so entirely at their own risk. The risk in slide climbing is dying. Be careful.

    (Modified by permission from Scrambling in the Canadian Rockies by Alan Kane)
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