Mountaineering Scotland have launched their 2020 #ThinkWINTER campaign, helping people to stay safer in the outdoors during the winter months. The campaign is in its third year running and growing momentum and support across Scotland. They are keen to highlight that Scotland’s winter mountains are a bit more than just summer with dusting of icing sugar.
“This summer saw a noticeable increase in the number of people heading for the outdoors,”said Mountaineering Scotland in their press release. “With foreign travel opportunities still limited due to coronavirus, it’s likely that many will carry on their new hobby through the winter, domestic COVID restrictions permitting.”
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Working with partner organisations such as Scottish Mountain Rescue, Mountain Training, Glenmore Lodge, Snowsport Scotland and Developing Mountain Biking in Scotland, the campaign will offer free expert advice – aiming to reach as many people as possible. The advice will cover activities such as hill walking and mountaineering, back country skiing, hill-running and mountain biking.
As a starting point for winter novices and veterans alike, Mountaineering Scotland have put together a seven point checklist for those venturing into the mountains:
- Check the COVID protection measures where you live and where you plan to go
- Plan your route and check the mountain weather and avalanche forecasts
- Pack appropriate winter clothing, footwear and equipment and have plenty to eat and drink
- Make sure you have the necessary winter skills and experience for what you are planning to do
- Know your limits and be prepared to alter your plans if the weather or conditions change
- Let someone know where you are going and what time you will be back
- In an emergency call 999 or 112 and ask for Police and then Mountain Rescue
They are also encouraging people to use the #ThinkWINTER hashtag on social media to help spread the campaign.
There is, of course, plenty more free information on the Mountaineering Scotland website covering everything from planning to rescue, avalanches to winter camping.
Shaun Roberts, Principal at Glenmore Lodge, sportscotland’s National Outdoor Training Centre, said, “It is critical that you pack the right information as well as the right gear, so make the most of the free resources available as part of your planning.”
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An adventure writer based on Dartmoor, England, Emily is an active member of Mountain Rescue and a summer Mountain Leader, but loves all things adventure – before her third birthday she had lived on three continents. Founder of Intrepid magazine, she works to help break stereotypes about women in the outdoors. Her expeditions have included walking all Dartmoor’s 119 tors in a single two-week outing, cycling to Switzerland and back, and riding the Rhine from source to sea.