Everything You’ll Need to Know About Climbing, Mountains and Mountaineering
There are many guides about mountain climbing for beginners out there. This can make it overwhelming because you do not know where to start. I decided to write this guide from my experience to help those understand what it means to climb as a beginner.
It can be simple, but caution is the word to remember.
While the rewards from mountain climbing can even feel spiritual; it does mean you’re going to have to do a lot more preparation.
Mountain climbing for beginners catches new climbers off guard. They do not realize the large diversity of preparation that needs to be done. Climbing mountains can take hours or sometimes weeks. You have to learn the gadgets and techniques involved.
Mountaineering for Beginners
Mountain climbing for beginners always involves two important tips. You have to prepare yourself mentally and physically.
You’ll need physical training because you will need to carry a lot of equipment and be active for a long time. Cardio training is important for training. These are some perfect beginner exercises.
- Running for Cardio.
- Cycling for Cardio.
- Swimming for Cardio.
- Weight Lifting for Upper Body Strength.
- Indoor Stair Climbing for Leg Strength.
- Climb with a Pack or Weight on Your Back.
You will also need to train yourself mentally. Mountain climbing, for beginners or experts, will wear you out; everyone experiences discomfort and risks at every mountain climb they do.
To prepare, you need to research before your pick which mountains to climb. Do your research and you will not be caught off guard by anything.
In many ways, you are reading this because you are doing mental preparation so that is a good first step.
Hiking, Trekking and Mountaineering
One of the big omissions climbing for beginner instructions fail to provide is the difference between hiking, trekking and mountaineering. They all have different difficulty levels and you should consider this when you pick the activity you think is best for you.
They all can be difficult though so don’t be fooled by the activity I call the easiest.
- Hiking (Easiest) – You will take walks on well-marked trails. They usually take about half a day to complete
- Trekking (Intermediate) – This is similar to hiking except it can take more than one day.
- Mountaineering (Hardest) – It is more technical then trekking and you are likely taking trails that will take you to higher peaks.
Preparation Involved in Mountain Climbing for Beginners
Here, we get into the details of preparation. Every mountain requires different things to consider so make sure you do your research after choosing which mountains to climb.
Since mountaineering is becoming more and more popular, a lot of mountains need permits to control crowds. Try to find out if the mountain you plan to climb has an agency or a land manager.
When you are picking which mountains to climb, you will find out a lot of mountains have different difficulty levels. These levels are based on the mountain’s topography. This means depending on the features and surface of the mountain, a climb will be ranked differently.
You should search for a difficulty level that is appropriate for you current level (mentally and physically).
Each season has different pros and cons for climbing. Some pros may not include you especially if you are doing mountaineering as a beginner.
When it comes to mountain climbing for beginners, Spring, early-Autumn and Summer are the recommended seasons for climbing. It lets you avoid unstable weather such as strong winds or random snowstorms.
Another great thing about these seasons is that many mountain agencies treat these seasons as peak seasons. All the facilities on the mountain are functioning so it is a lot safer when accidents happen. You can get great food and lodging.
Winter season is considered the most advanced type of mountaineering. If you are part of a beginner’s groups, please avoid trying to mountaineer during the winter at all cost.
- Stable Weather.
- Great Nature Scenery.
- Leftover Effects from Winter.
- Stable Weather.
- Great Nature Scenery.
- Most Popular Season May Mean Crowds.
- Great Nature Scenery – Changing Colors.
- Random Strong Winds.
- Winter Nature Scenery.
- Very Quiet.
- Dangerous; Not for Mountain Climbing Beginners.
- Extremely Cold.
- Unstable Weather Conditions.
Every mountain is different but there is some basic gear that you bring with you no matter what.
- Mountaineering rope.
- Harness designed for mountaineering.
- Belay device.
- Crevasse rescue equipment.
- Mountaineering boots and crampons.
- Camping necessities.
Mountain Climbing for Beginners – Do I Want a Guide?
You should definitely consider the pros and cons of having a guide. There are many guides whose job is to teach beginners for mountain climbinging. Naturally, it is recommended beginner climbers should start with a guide but everyone is different. I definitely think the pros outweigh the cons.
- They can help you pick the perfect mountains to climb.
- They are there for your safety.
- They can hone your skills.
- They are specialized to help mountaineering beginners.
- They cost more money.
- You risk personality clashes with them; you are going to be with them for a long time.
Climbing for Beginner’s Hazard Guide
There is no way to be perfectly safe on your mountain climbs. To reduce risk, you should pay attention to different potential hazards.
Most mountains will tell you what you have to be careful of. If you are aware of them before you start, it will go a long way in keeping you safe. Here are three (3) common mountain climbing for beginner hazards you should be aware of.
- Falling rocks
Common Mountain Climbing for Beginner Mistakes
- Not cutting your toenails.
- Climbing into high altitude too fast.
- Forgetting suncream.
- Not drinking enough water.
- Bad communication.
- Forgetting to double check your knots and belays.
Make sure you never become arrogant. All mistakes can lead to fatal accidents and even the most professional mountain climbers have had accidents because of common mistakes.
Mountain climbing for beginners could be, in most cases, an overwhelming aspect if your mind and body are not properly trained and most importantly, interconnected.
As long as you keep all of this in mind; your mountain climbing for beginner experience will be wonderful!
As part of your mountaineering training, in the below section, you will discover what are the mountain climbing essentials that need to be considered before, during and after climbing a mountain. Get prepared to have a great climbing experience when climbing towards the mountain summits.