No matter what they say about us, many Itinerants love active rest and sports. Most often it’s running, biking, rollerblading. Sometimes something individual and extreme: skydiving, diving, parkour. But there is one more way to unload and at the same time to get useful skills for work is climbing.
The charm of the mountains
It’s hard to go to the mountains and not fall in love with them. This type of rest is very capacious: in just a week you can switch completely, experience “positive stress”, cleanse your head and test yourself.
Those who were able to climb to the real top will have a very different view of the working difficulties, work in a group and approach the problem solving. Mountains teach us responsibility. At the same time, no extraordinary abilities are required to engage in mountaineering.
There are two types of ascents: commercial and sports. The first, as a rule, do not require much effort: a person is almost to the top of the ride on the ropes and ratchets, not loaded with equipment and supplies, instructors follow each step.
Sports climbing is another matter. It will require stamina, wit and teamwork skills. But the impressions are much stronger.
It seems that hiking in the mountains – it’s long, expensive, hard, requires special equipment and constant training. In fact, everything is not so complicated.
How do I evaluate my powers?
Climbing into the mountains is a certain physical activity, so it is worth testing yourself. Walking up the stairs to the top floor of a multi-storey building, running a 10-kilometre cross – if it’s on the shoulder, then hiking in the mountains is likely to be a pleasant walk.
Where can I find time to go to the mountains?
If everything is well planned, you can climb a couple of peaks in a week of vacation, and even conquer Elbrus in two weeks. How can a beginner’s route look like?
On New Year’s holidays you can go to Ingushetia and climb Table Mountain, it is considered an ideal option for the first ascent, then try something harder. In March and May, take a short vacation and take a week to the heights, conquering a couple of peaks.
It is also useful to devote some time to climbing in order to learn not to be afraid of heights and get basic climbing skills. This is ideal for low rocks, such as in the Crimea. And for a summer vacation you can plan a serious ascent, for example, the conquest of the highest mountain in Europe – Elbrus.
Is it dangerous to climb Elbrus?
Elbrus seems very accessible and not scary at all, especially from the south. The streams flow, the slope is even and convenient for climbing. On this side of the mountain are organized commercial climbing. You can climb the rope to a height of 3600 meters, then up to 5 km – on the ratraki.
But it is on Mount Elbrus that more people die than on all other Russian mountains combined. The fact is that the flow of willing people is huge, and not everyone understands what dangers hide the height and extremely friable slopes. High-altitude acclimatization is vital, otherwise it is easy to catch a mountain disease.
Optimal is considered an option when it takes 2 weeks to acclimatize, and it is carried out “teeth”. During this time it is possible to conquer some low peaks, to spend the night at the height of several thousand meters.
After that, you can go to the assault of the five-thousand meter. If there is no time for acclimatization, it is necessary to lay down at least a week for everything to be in order.
The popular sports route is called the “Elbrus traverse from north to south”. The climbing group comes from the north, climbing to the eastern summit, descending to the saddle. There, at an altitude of 5300 meters, it sleeps there and climbes to the western summit. After that he descends to the south. This way really passes in 3 days.
What kind of equipment do you need?
Nothing particularly large and extremely expensive to go to the mountains is required. For example, going to Elbrus, except for suitable clothes you need to take: cats, ice pick, icebreakers, strapping, insurance. And the usual tourist accessories: backpack, sleeping bag, water, first-aid kit, supplies.
Why go to such trials?
Indeed, motivation is very important, it is necessary to set a clear goal at once. It is necessary to fill the ascent with meaning as much as possible. Warn everyone that you are going to conquer the top. Create a group in a messenger and sign colleagues on their travel notes and photos. Finally, take the flag of your favorite company to be photographed with it at height. If you make a promise to someone, you have an extra incentive to get things done.
What can an IT guy learn in the mountains?
Mountaineering is an extreme, teamwork and contemplative sport at the same time. The skills that you get in the mountains are very similar to those that are highly valued in Agile teams. For example, a lot of time is spent on building internal communications in the team, so that there is no such thing: I mean one thing, the developer does another, and the tester does not understand what it is about.
In the mountains, the bunch of partners must clearly and correctly understand what they want from each other. At the same time, they may not see or hear each other at all. For example, when insuring using natural relief, it is quite possible that the partner is on the other side of the ridge, the rope is thrown over the relief.
He is not visible, the wind tears down the words, and only the tension of the rope and intuition are used. After a few hours of such joint work the team becomes a single whole.
It is especially difficult to walk in a triple binder in the center, here it is necessary to take into account the behavior of the one who is in front and the one who is behind. You have to fill up a lot of bumps before you can go in sync and feel each other.
The process of ascent itself is similar to the work on the project: there is also a distant goal, a lot of difficulties and surprises, overcoming yourself, constant self-study and steady movement to the result.
There is one more irreplaceable skill which educates alpinism. It is an undisputed, deep sense of responsibility. When you insure your partner, you literally have his life and health in your hands. No matter how much the instructor drives you, you can’t give in to panic and do something in haste. This skill is very helpful in the work afterwards.