Mountain Safety


Whilst being a wonderful environment in which to walk, climb and explore, the mountains of the UK coupled with our changeable weather can create hazards and dangers, which can usually be avoided once armed with the right knowledge.

Mountain Sense is passionate about mountain safety - this is reflected in our range of courses. We have also initiated a Mountain Safety Awareness Campaign here in Keswick, where we have funded the manufacture and distribution of waterproof Mountain Safety Information Cards. These are available to walkers and climbers free of charge through a growing number of shops, pubs and hotels in Keswick. 

Please take the time to read the following guidelines and please contact Mountain Sense if you would like any further information.


General Precautions


•  Always leave details of your intended route with a responsible person.

•  Always carry a map & compass and know how to use them.

•  Ensure you are carrying enough suitable clothing and equipment to remain comfortable should you have
   a problem. (Winter conditions can occur at any time of year in the UK Mountains).

•  Mobile phones and GPSs have their limitations. Do not rely on either for safety whilst in the mountains.

•  Be aware of your own limitations (and those of all group members).  If in any doubt turn back.

•  The mountains will always be there tomorrow!  Make sure you are too! 


Clothing & Equipment


•  Protective clothing starts below the surface.  Technical base layers are relatively inexpensive and unlike
   cotton they will wick moisture away from the body.

•  Mid layers should again be made of high wicking fibres that move moisture to a breathable outer shell.
   In temperatures above 0°c down will become damp and lose nearly all of its insulating properties.

•  A good mountain jacket will be waterproof and breathable, have a fixed hood large enough to protect the face in gale force
   winds and cuffs large enough to pull over thick gloves, it should also have a convenient pocket large enough for a full size map.

•  As well as adequate clothing always carry high calorific food and plenty of water, a head torch, spare batteries, whistle,
   first aid kit and a light weight emergency shelter (large enough for you & your group).

•  When snow & ice may be encountered under foot carry an ice axe and crampons and know how to use them.


Emergency Procedures



•  Don’t make the situation worse by risking further casualties. The priority must be you, the rest of the party then the casualty.

•  Keep the casualty and the rest of the group warm and reassured. 

•  Is the casualty conscious? If not ensure their airway remains open and unobstructed.

•  Remember: Airway Breathing Circulation (if this means nothing, you should consider doing a basic first aid course- it could be a life saver)

•  Stop any serious bleeding by applying direct pressure to the wound with either a clean dressing or spare clothing.

•  If you have a mobile phone dial 999 and ask for the police. The police will ask you for basic details to alert the nearest Mountain Rescue Team (MRT)

•  Remain in mobile phone reception as the MRT will call you back for further information including:

•  Exact location of incident, including grid reference - number of casualties and their injuries - any other relevant information
   eg. medication and medical history of casualty prior to incident.

•  If you don’t have a phone signal and you are alone use your whistle and torch to send a distress signal: 6 whistle
   blasts or torch flashes in quick succession repeated every minute until help arrives.

•  Remember 70٪ of accidents happen during descent.  Your mountain adventure ends back at the car not on the summit.


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