Beyond the Ten Essentials

January 6th, 2017 in High Camp Happenings

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Oh I am hoping this article does not get “preachy”. We in the back country community cannot be attentive enough to our decision-making as we play hard at what we love to do. It is difficult to pull back, reflect, question as we ski, snowshoe, snowboard with the beauty of nature all around us where we feel the most at peace, happy and fulfilled!

We have organized a check out system in the lodge at High Camp. We ask our guests to sign out when they leave camp. There is a place for names, destination and time of return. We would really like for our guests to check with the staff about  conditions and suggested routes. Our staff will do their best to match skier ability to the right route and will send you to places they love and enjoy. They will take the time to give you complete directions.

Many back country travelers are relying on cell phones for navigation. That works great if the user has experience using the apps and devise.  It is not a great idea to try to learn to navigate using your cell phone when you find yourself confused about your location. Here is the link on our website to maps of the High Camp area and an app to load if you wish to use your cell phone for navigation. Carrying the map we provide with you is also good. And your compass should always be handy if you should get turned around.

High Camp Navigation Tools

The Ten Essentials are of course a good beginning! I will reference the list at the end of this article. We can’t let the fact that we are carrying these important items lull us into a sense of security. There are other things to consider beyond these ten essentials.

  1. let others know where you are intending to recreate
  2. turn around if you are confused about the route
  3. be aware of the terrain around you…watch for changes
  4. be aware of impending darkness, days are short in the middle of winter
  5. be aware of the weather, probably not a good idea to go out in the teeth of a storm
  6. traveling alone compounds your risk
  7. in the winter bring a shovel
  8. in winter you need more extra clothing than you think

There is more of course that we can add to this list. Common Sense is a good one! This is just a gentle reminder that we are keeping ourselves safe and being considerate of those who care about us who are at home.

The WTA has a great page on the Ten Essentials. Definitely worth the read:

Washington Trails Association Ten Essentials

It is a glorious winter with lots of snow!  So embrace your love of the great outdoors with a dash of caution.

Christine